Dallas Court of Appeals cases for the week of October 17, 2011

For the week of October 17, 2011, the Dallas Court of Appeals issued twelve opinions in civil cases.  Four of these dispose of a case without a detailed discussion of the merits (e.g., dismissing a case for want of prosecution, dismissing a case for mootness, dismissing a case pursuant to settlement).  The remaining eight cases are as follows:

City of Dallas v. Brown (05-11-00165-CV) – Recites well-established (1) standard for reviewing whether a trial court has subject matter jurisdiction; (2) rule that, under the common-law doctrine of sovereign immunity, the state cannot be sued without its consent; and (3) rule that, for the Legislature to waive the State’s sovereign immunity, a statute or resolution must contain a clear and unambiguous expression of the Legislature’s waiver of immunity.

In re A.L.V.Z. (05-11-00784-CV) – Recites well-established standard for reviewing trial court’s sustaining of contest to affidavit of indigence.

In re M.C. (05-11-00042-CV) – Recites well-established (1) rule that proceedings to involuntarily terminate parental rights are strictly scrutinized on appeal; and (2) rule that statutes governing involuntary termination of parental rights are strictly construed in favor of the parent.

La Providencia Food Prods. Co. v. Super Plaza Stores, LLC (05-10-00709-CV) – Recites well-established (1) standard for reviewing traditional summary judgment; (2) elements of common-law fraud cause of action; and (3) rule that intent and credibility of witnesses are issues for the trier of fact.

Lucky Dawg Movers, Inc. v. Wee Haul, Inc. (05-10-00222-CV) – Recites well-established rule that a trial court’s failure to respond to a request for required findings of fact is error and presumed harmful unless the record before the appellate court affirmatively shows that the complaining party suffered no harm.

Margetis v. Peterson (05-10-01281-CV) – Recites well-established rule that, to property present an issue on appeal, a party’s brief must contain argument with citations to authorities and to the record.

McIntyre v. Lexis Nexis (05-11-00809-CV) – Recites well-established rule that (1) appellate jurisdiction cannot be invoked without a signed judgment or order; and (2) a record of the court’s ruling by the court reporter is not an acceptable substitute for a written order.

Transcontinental Realty Investors, Inc. v. Orix Capital Mkts., LLC (05-10-00655-CV) – Recites well-established (1) rule that Declaratory Judgments Act cannot be used to obtain an advisory opinion; (2) rule that declaratory judgment is appropriate only when a real controversy exists between the parties and the entire controversy may be determined by the judicial declaration; and (3) rule that a case is not ripe if its resolution depends on contingent facts or events that have yet to come to pass.