|Trial Lawyer Frank Branson Featured and Quoted in Texas Lawbook article |
Battered Personal Injury Bar Branches Out to Business Clients
|October 30, 2012 11:58 pm|
Trial lawyer Frank Branson has long been public enemy number one to doctors throughout Texas, as he has won dozens of huge court judgments against them in medical malpractice lawsuits.
But a curious development has occurred in recent months: Branson has been showing up in court in multimillion-dollar business disputes representing physicians and other executives who used to be his prey.
Branson hasn't switched sides, but he is among a growing number of highly successful personal injury trial lawyers who are increasingly representing companies and executives in litigation against other businesses in legal fights ranging from contracts disputes to allegations of fraud. Legal insiders say the trend is being witnessed across the state and is likely to grow.
Why? It's an issue of necessity, say legal analysts, who point to decades of political victories by the state's business community that limited damages in cases involving injured workers and medical malpractice.
At another level, it is a recognition, particularly by small and medium-sized businesses, that lawyers who spend a lot of time in the courtroom may be a better value and more successful at resolving their problems than big-firm attorneys.
The Law Offices of Frank L. Branson, an eight-lawyer Dallas firm, still earns most of its fees representing people who have been seriously injured, often by impaired truck drivers, dangerous products or industrial accidents.
But it has seen a major drop in medical negligence cases since the Legislature in 2003 limited the amount of noneconomic damages that an individual could recover. Prior to those changes, Branson says he accepted about one case a month out of 70 to 80 referrals. He still gets many referrals but only takes a few cases a year, mainly involving workers who can prove a large amount of lost wages.
"I think it's a real tragedy for the people of Texas," says Branson.
© 2012 The Texas Lawbook.
Send this page to a friend