Handbook Disclaimer Again Proves Its Value

Posted on Jun 13, 2019

Most employers are aware of the importance of containing language in employee handbooks that disclaim any intent for the handbook to establish a contract of employment for any particular period of time, and retain an employee’s “at-will” employment status.  Recently, in the case of McAllen Hospitals, L.P. d/b/a McAllen Medical Center and South Texas Health […]

2019 Legislature Narrows Texas Citizens Participation Act to Clean Up Eight-Year Mess

Posted on Jun 12, 2019

On June 2, 2019, Governor Abbott signed a bill amending the Texas Citizens Participation Act (“TCPA” or “Act”) to clarify and narrow its scope. The changes will help slow a years-long torrent of litigation over the meaning and reach of the legislation.   In 2011, the 82nd Legislature passed the TCPA to protect citizens’ rights […]

Wire Transfer Fraud

Posted on Jun 5, 2019

If your business sends or receives wire transfers, beware of business email compromise (“BEC”) schemes. In a typical BEC scheme, hackers gain access to an employee’s email account.  They monitor the account until they see email traffic that mentions a wire transfer.  The hackers then impersonate or “spoof” the person sending the wire transfer instructions […]

Texas Supreme Court: You Can’t Claim Fraud If It’s in Writing and You Signed It

Posted on Mar 21, 2019

The Texas Supreme Court recently reaffirmed a contracting party’s ability to protect itself from liability for fraudulent inducement by bargaining for specific disclaimers of reliance on any extra-contractual statements. This decision serves as an important reminder of the power of such disclaimers, which can even bar actions based on post-signing misrepresentations if the parties later […]

Applications for Open-Space Agricultural Use Appraisal—What You Need to Know to Protect Your Ag Use Valuation

Posted on Mar 12, 2019

If you own land and have claimed an agricultural exemption, you may be familiar with the Texas Comptroller’s Application for 1-d-1 (Open-Space) Agricultural Use Appraisal. Certain landowners have recently received notices—surprisingly, in some cases—from their appraisal districts requesting that they file a new application, despite having previously received the appraisal. The precise reasons for reapplication […]

As Employers, Ranch Owners Should Consider Workers Compensation Coverage

Posted on Sep 24, 2018

In Texas, it is common for large landowners to engage in ranching as a business. The reasons may vary from providing the sole or major source of income for the owners to retaining certain tax exemptions for the property. Regardless of the reason for engaging in ranching operations, there are certain risks and liabilities to […]

Best Lawyers in America® 2019 Recognizes 13 Branscomb | PC Attorneys

Posted on Aug 15, 2018

Branscomb | PC congratulates its lawyers included on the list: Austin Jeff Dickerson (2010) Corporate Law Jim Robichaux (2007) Commercial Litigation, Mass Tort Litigation / Class Actions – Defendants Craig Williams (2008) Real Estate Law Corpus Christi Jim Clancy (2012) Commercial Litigation Omar Leal (2013) Trusts and Estates Scott Sherman (2008) Trusts and Estates, Litigation – Trusts and Estates Mike Stukenberg (1997) […]

Texas Bar Journal Recognizes Branscomb | PC Partner’s Passion for Yoga

Posted on Jul 24, 2018

Traditionally, exercise has been valued primarily for its physical benefits, such as heart health, lower blood pressure, and an overall healthier physique. However, in the past decade, social scientists have compiled evidence suggesting additional benefits of regular exercise: cognitive improvements such as increased mental stamina, improved concentration, sharper memory, and reduced stress. The July 2018 […]

Not Responding to Unemployment Claims– A Missed Opportunity

Posted on Feb 14, 2018

All businesses deal with the unemployment compensation system at some level.  Employers subject to the Texas Unemployment Compensation Act (“TUCA”) are required to pay unemployment insurance taxes to the Texas Workforce Commission (“TWC”).   When employees cease employment, they may file a claim with the TWC to receive unemployment benefits.  However, the unemployment process—particularly representations made […]

Need Training …. #MeToo

Posted on Jan 31, 2018

The “#MeToo” movement has created a heightened awareness of sexual harassment issues. However, the reports concerning allegations of “inappropriate conduct” have tended to blur the distinction between conduct that constitutes actionable sexual harassment and discrimination in employment and conduct that does not. Also, missing from the discussion is practical information on what employers should and […]