Flooded Cars: What to do if you bought a submarine instead of a subcompact?

Hurricane Harvey has dumped tons of rain on the Greater Houston Area and those floodwaters have swallowed up thousands upon thousands of cars. The news coverage will, for good reason, focus on the damage to personal property and homes, but the sale of flooded vehicles is another serious casualty of these kinds of storms.

Not all dealers are up front when a car has flood damage, and it can cost you. Even if a car looks good and seems to run fine, expensive problems can appear later as corrosion continues to creep inside critical components. This article talks about how to protect yourself from this and what to do if you purchase a flood damaged car.

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5 Things You Need to Know About Flood Damage & Insurance

Right now the roads in Houston are impassable and there are a lot of people who are in need of help. I want to do what I can to provide whatever assistance I can to as many people as possible. Please let us know how we can help! I’m writing a series of articles to provide you with some information that might be helpful as you try to recover and rebuild in the weeks and months ahead.

It’s safe to say that most of the Houston area damage related to Hurricane Harvey is flood related. The rains just continue to batter this area and many are sleeping in makeshift shelters and relying upon the kindness of neighbors and strangers to stay safe and dry tonight. There are several things you need to know from a legal standpoint to help you recover after the flooding.

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Can I Recover Attorney's Fees For A Breach of Contact Case?

Contracts can be as complicated as a multi-million dollar business merger or as simple as an agreement to cut your grass. When all parties uphold their ends of the agreement, everything goes along fine. However, when one party fails to deliver upon their promise, you might be damaged financially as a result.

People who have been damaged by another individual’s breach of a contract want to be made whole.  However, if a party to the agreement refuses to abide by its terms, the other party or parties might have to hire an attorney and file suit, which can be expensive. However, under Texas Law, a party suing to recover for a breach of a contract may be able to recover their own attorney’s fees as well.

The general rule in Texas is that each party pays its own attorney’s fees.  Turner v. Turner, 385 S.W.2d 230, 233 (Tex. 1964).  However, attorney’s fees are recoverable under Tex. Civ. Prac. & Rem. Code § 38.001 in lawsuits for (1) rendered services; performed labor; (3) furnished material; (4) freight or express overcharges; (5) lost or damaged freight or express; (6) killed or injured stock; (7) a sworn account; or (8) an oral or written contract.  The most common lawsuits where this section is invoked by litigators are suits on sworn accounts, oral or written contracts and lawsuits for rendered services or performed labor. Tex. Civ. Prac. & Rem. Code § 38.001.

One thing to note is that this statute is not left to the judge’s discretion. This means that, the judge (provided that proof and pleading and other requirements are met) does not have discretion in awarding fees to the prevailing party.  D. F. W. Christian Television, Inc. v. Thorton, 933 S.W.2d 488, 490 (Tex. 1996).  Attorney’s fees are recoverable for work before and during trial. 

Additionally, attorney’s fees may be recoverable past trial and through the appellate process.  Neal v. SMC Corp., 99 S.W.3d 813, 818 (Tex. App. — Dallas, 2003, no pet).  Attorney’s fees can also be recovered in cases where the attorney is working on a contingent fee (e.g. 33% of the recovery).

People who have been wronged in a breach of contract case should be able to be made whole and recovering attorney’s fees spent to make a person whole is a vital part of that process.

Basics of Contracts in Texas

A contract is a legally binding agreement between parties to do or not do something. Businesses owners enter into contracts for a multitude of reasons. It is essential for business owners to have a good understanding of the basics of contract law. The first consideration when examining any contract is to determine whether a contract has been made. Once a contract has been created, it must be determined if there are any issues that call into question its validity. Lastly, if there has been a breach of the contract, there is a question of whether damages have occurred.

Contract Components

Offer, acceptance, and consideration are the three basic elements for a contractual relationship to be created.

Offer

The first step to a contract is an offer. An offer is a written or spoken statement by a party of his or her intention to be held to a commitment upon acceptance of the offer. Many business owners have become involved in legal disputes because, during negotiations, a customer believed an offer had been made when the businessperson believed the parties only were discussing possible options. A businessperson should carefully consider whether his or her statements or the statements of other parties constitute offers. There are a number of factors to look at to determine whether a statement constitutes an offer.

Is the person making the offer serious? A business executive who jokingly suggests the sale of a successful business in exchange for a good bottle of scotch is not making an offer. On the other hand, a business executive who writes up an offer on a bar napkin may be perfectly serious. A court will look at the context in which the statement was made to determine whether it was a valid offer.

Does the statement show a willingness of the party to be held to its contents? A person requesting a price quote or opening negotiations is not making an offer. An advertisement usually is viewed as an invitation to an offer rather than an offer itself.

Does the statement contain definite terms? If the subject matter is identified, the parties are identified, the price is set, quantities are determined, and a time is set for performance, an offer very likely has been made. There should be enough information contained in the statement that, if needed, a court would be able to enforce the contract or determine the damages.

Acceptance

The second requirement for a valid contract is acceptance of the offer. In order for an acceptance of an offer to be effective, it must be made while the offer is still open. In some situations, the company making the offer gives a definite time frame:

"My company will sell you this computer software for $2000, but you must decide whether to buy it within two days."

Other ways an offer may end include: the person making the offer withdraws the offer, the person who receives the offer rejects it, a reasonable amount of time passes after the offer is made, or the subject matter of the offer is destroyed before acceptance.

Unless an offer specifies otherwise, an offer can be accepted though the mail. An important rule known as the "mailbox rule" says that an acceptance is effective once it is put in the mailbox. If the offeror attempts to withdraw the offer after the acceptance is mailed but before it is received, the person accepting the offer can hold the offeror to the contract. For this reason, anyone making an offer should be aware that it might be accepted, by means of the mailbox rule, before the offeror knows of the acceptance. This can cause problems for the offeror if he or she assumed the offer was rejected and found another buyer. To avoid possible confusion, some businesses will specify in an offer that acceptance of the offer is only effective upon receipt of the acceptance.

If a person changes the conditions of an offer in responding to the offer, the offer is rejected and the changed conditions constitute a counter-offer:

"I want to buy the software, but I will pay only $1500 for it."

In this scenario, the person who made the original offer can respond to the counter-offer by accepting or rejecting it, or proposing yet another offer.

There are two ways a person can accept an offer: by promising to do something, or by performing the desired act. In the first type, known as a bilateral contract, a customer accepts an offer to sell computer software by promising to pay $2000 for the software. In the second type, known as a unilateral contract, a business owner offers a contractor $1000 to replace ceiling tiles and the contractor replaces the tiles; the contractor accepted the offer by performing the act requested.

Consideration

Consideration is a legal concept that describes something of value given in exchange for a performance or a promise of performance. The presence of consideration distinguishes contracts from gifts. Consideration can be a promise to do something there is no legal obligation to do, or a promise to not do something there is a legal right to do.

Promises to exchange money, goods, or services are forms of consideration. All parties in an agreement must give consideration in order to create a contract, but courts typically do not make a determination about the adequacy of the consideration unless there is evidence of some type of wrongdoing by the party benefiting most from the contract.

Defenses to Contract

Once it is determined that the basic elements of a contract exist, it must be determined whether there are any defenses that call into question the validity of the contract. There are some defenses that make the contract automatically unenforceable (void) and other defenses that give the parties the option not to enforce the contract (voidable).

Legality of the Contract

Although two persons may exchange an offer, acceptance, and consideration, if the subject matter of the contract is illegal, a valid, enforceable contract does not exist. For example, if a person offers to pay another person money for illegal drugs, and an acceptance is made by the promise to deliver the illegal drugs, this is nevertheless a void contract.

Capacity of the Parties

In order to be bound to a contract, the parties must be competent to enter into the legal arrangement. Underage persons, persons who are mentally ill, and intoxicated persons usually are not bound by the contracts they enter. However, a minor may have the option of enforcing a contract under some circumstances.

Agency

A business may challenge the validity of a contract by alleging that the person who signed the contract for the company was not an agent of the company and therefore had no authority to act on the company's behalf. Agency is a legal status—one party, the agent, has authority to conduct business for another party, the principal. Unless they have very small businesses, most business owners must rely on other people to conduct business and enter into contracts on behalf of their businesses. Thus, agency is a common aspect of doing business. Because principals are bound by contracts entered into by their agents, business operators should be familiar with the laws of agency.

An agent's authority to enter into contracts on behalf of the business can be actual, implied, or apparent. Actual authority is authority that the principal has intentionally given to an agent who has accepted it. The clearest example of creating actual authority is when a business owner hires someone to negotiate purchases for the company. Implied authority may result from the agent's relationship with the principal or the principal's business, from custom, or by acquiescence. For example, a principal might not intentionally authorize an employee to make credit purchases for the business, but if the principal repeatedly pays debts incurred by the employee, he or she may inadvertently create implied authority in that employee. Apparent authority results when the principal acts in a way that causes third parties reasonably to assume that the agent has authority. For example, if a business owner is aware that an employee is claiming authority to act on behalf of the business, the principal should clarify that the employee is not authorized to enter into a contract on behalf of the business, or the employee's apparent authority may bind the business.

Mistake, Duress, and Fraud

A mutual mistake—a mistake by both parties to a contract on an important issue—makes the contract unenforceable. However, a mistake by only one party does not necessarily make the contract void. A contract is not necessarily unenforceable because one party has made a miscalculation or wrong assumption.

Duress is the use of force or pressure by one party to make the other party agree to the contract. The force does not have to be physical—it may be mental pressure. The use of duress makes the contract voidable by the party under duress. Fraud is the intentional misrepresentation of an important issue of the contract. The presence of fraud in a contractual proceeding makes the contract voidable by the party upon whom the fraud was perpetrated.

Statute of Frauds

Contracts, in many instances, do not have to be in writing to be legally binding. However, a rule known as the Statute of Frauds requires that some contracts must be written to be valid. Under Texas law, contracts involving the sale of real estate, contracts concerning the sale of goods worth more than $500, contracts that cannot be performed within one year, contracts to pay off someone else's debts, and marriage contracts must be in writing.

Parol Evidence Rule

Although it is not a defense to a contract, the parol evidence rule may affect the contents of a contract and how a contract is enforced. The parol evidence rule applies once parties have come to a final, written contract. Once there is a final, written contract between the parties, the parol evidence rule forbids the introduction in a court proceeding of any previous agreements between the parties on the subject matter of the contract. The parol evidence rule permits the judge or jury in a contract dispute to look only at the written contract and not at any previous discussions between the parties. The reasoning behind the parol evidence rule is that all factors that are important to the agreement and that have been decided by the parties should be stated in the final, written contract. The parol evidence rule does not, however, forbid the introduction of subsequent agreements between the parties.

Contract Termination

Once there is a valid contract between parties, it can end in several ways. A contract with a stated, limited time span simply expires at the end of the stated time. If a person is hired to work for two weeks, the contract concludes at the end of two weeks. In many instances in which there is a specific time frame stated in the contract, parties to the contract might have the option to extend the contract for a longer period of time.

Contracts also may be project specific. A contract may be made for the provision of goods for a project, and upon the completion of the project the contract for these goods or services ends. Parties to a contract may mutually agree to rescind the contract. In that case, the parties may agree on the duties and responsibilities of each party after the rescission.

A contract also may end because of a breach. A breach occurs when a party does not fulfill his or her responsibilities under the contract. A breach may be minor or major. A minor breach is one that affects small, minor details of the agreement and may not affect the outcome of the contract. However, a major breach is one that does affect the subject matter of the contract and may affect the outcome of the contract. This is also known as a material breach. When there has been a breach of a contract, the question of damages is raised.

Damages

The type and amount of damages due to a party when there is a contract breach depend on many factors, including which party breached the contract, what damages were incurred, what the contract states with regard to damages, whether the breach was material, and the subject matter of the contract.

When a person is harmed by a breach, courts usually award only foreseeable damages. Foreseeable damages are those damages that the parties anticipated or should have anticipated at the time the contract was formed.

Money Damages

In most cases of an injury resulting from a breach of contract, the injured party receives money damages. The court awards the amount of money needed to place the person in the position he or she would have been in if the contract had not been breached. For example, suppose a business owner contracts with a roofer to put a new roof on a warehouse but the roofer stops in the middle of the job and refuses to finish the new roof. If the business owner finds another roofer to finish the job at an additional cost of $15,000, the damages are $15,000.

Although a person normally is entitled to the money difference between what was promised and what it costs to complete the promise, the injured party must try to "mitigate" the damages.

Mitigation means the injured party takes reasonable steps to limit the extent of the injury and finish the job. In the previous example, the business owner must make reasonable efforts to find another party to finish the roof and must take reasonable steps to protect inventory in the warehouse from exposure due to the lack of a roof. If the business owner refuses to look for another roofer and consequently inventory in the warehouse is ruined, the breaching roofer will probably be able to successfully defend against paying for the cost of the ruined goods.

Specific Performance

There are some situations in which money damages are inadequate. Typically, awarding money damages for a breach of contract involving the sale of land does not put the injured party in the same position he or she would have been in if the contract had been fulfilled. Because real estate is unique, one cannot simply go out and buy different property to replace the property for which one originally contracted. In a case such as this, the court may order the breaching party to perform the duties required by the contract. This remedy is called specific performance. Specific performance is ordered by courts only in rare cases in which the subject matter of the contract is unique, making it difficult to put a monetary amount on the damage incurred as a result of the breach. Specific performance is not awarded in personal service contracts. In the previous example, the court would not order the original roofer to complete the job.

Liquidated Damages

In an attempt to set a monetary damage amount in a case in which it may be difficult, the parties may include a provision that specifies the amount of damages in event of a breach.

Such predetermined damages are called liquidated damages. For example, a company may put down "earnest money" for space in a mall and agree in the real estate contract to forfeit the earnest money to the mall owners as a damage award in the event of a breach. If the business owner decides not to open the store, the earnest money will be awarded as liquidated damages.

Rescission

In most contract disputes, a court puts the nonbreaching party in the position he or she would have been in if the contract had not been breached. However, there are times when the court may place the party in the position he or she was in before the contract was executed. This remedy is known as rescission. Rescission may be selected in cases in which one party intentionally misrepresents a material fact, for example. If a party has delivered goods or money to another party who fails to perform his or her duties under the contract, the court may decide simply to order that the goods or money be returned. The nonbreaching party then is in a position to contract with someone else.

Conclusion

In conclusion, contracts in Texas can be a complex and difficult matter to deal with as a business owner. On the surface it seems straightforward. Offer, acceptance, and consideration. However, often times, the details of the offer, the terms of acceptance and the type of consideration put additional matters into the equation. As always, my recommendation is to contact a legal professional with any and all your legal needs. This article is intended to be general information so that you can better understand the issues pertaining to contract in Texas, but each situation is unique and should be discussed with your attorney. 

 

 

 

Landlord/Tenant - Security Deposits

Most of us have had the experience of renting residential property. Very few of us are fortunate enough to have gone from our parents’ home to our own right off the bat. This means leases, landlords, and security deposits. 

The focus of this article is to answer some very common questions for both landlords and tenants regarding security deposits. Please keep in mind that The Moon Law Firm handles any and all landlord/tenant issues both in and out of court. If there’s any questions you have please contact us at 713-999-9398 or at JMoon@MoonLawFirm.com.

“What exactly is a security deposit?”
A security deposit is any advance of money, other than a rental application deposit or an advance payment of rent that is intended primarily to secure performance under a lease of a dwelling that has been entered into by a landlord and a tenant. According to the Texas Property Code, anything given to a landlord primarily to secure performance under a lease agreement is a Security Deposit. Usually a deposit is a sum of money given to a landlord by a tenant to be used to repair damages to the property caused by the tenant’s residency in the property.  

“When does a landlord have to refund a deposit?"
Once the lease term has expired, a tenant must give the landlord a written statement of the tenant's forwarding address for the purpose of refunding the security deposit. If the tenant does not provide this WRITTEN notice the landlord does not have to follow the usual rules regarding the refund of the deposit. However, if the tenant does not provide the landlord with this written notice of forwarding address, the tenant HAS NOT forfeited the right to a deposit! This simply means that the landlord cannot be held liable if he/she doesn’t provide the tenant with the deposit and statement of damages in a timely manner.  

Assuming the tenant has sent the landlord a timely notice of the forwarding address, the landlord must refund your security deposit on or before the 30th day the tenant leaves the premises.  

“When can a landlord keep a security deposit?"
A landlord can withhold amounts to repair damages for which the tenant is legally responsible under the lease or as a result of breaching the lease agreement. This means that, if the tenant damages the premises, the landlord can withhold from the security deposit amounts for repairing that damage.  

“What about normal wear and tear?"
A landlord may not withhold amounts from the security deposit for wear and tear. 

"What the heck is normal wear and tear anyways?"
"Normal wear and tear" means deterioration that results from the intended use of a dwelling, including, breakage or malfunction due to age or deteriorated condition, but the term does not include deterioration that results from negligence, carelessness, accident, or abuse of the premises, equipment, or property by the tenant, by a member of the tenant's household, or by a guest or invitee of the tenant.

"Doesn’t a landlord have to give a statement of the damages?"
Yes. If the landlord retains any portion of a security deposit, the landlord must give the tenant any remaining portion of the deposit and a written description and itemized list of all deductions. The landlord is not required to give the tenant a description and itemized list of deductions if the tenant owes rent when he surrenders possession of the premises and there is no controversy concerning the amount of rent owed. 

This means that unless all parties involved do not dispute that there is rent owed, a landlord must provide an accounting. A landlord is presumed to have refunded a security deposit or made an accounting of security deposit deductions if, on or before the date required under this subchapter, the refund or accounting is placed in the United States mail and postmarked on or before the required date. Furthermore, the landlord must maintain accurate records for security deposits.  

"What happens if a landlord withholds a deposit?"
A landlord who doesn’t refund the security deposit or provide a detailed accounting within the 30-day deadline is presumed to be acting in bad faith. This means that the landlord may be subject to triple the amount of the withheld portion of the security deposit as well as the tenant’s attorney’s fees. Furthermore, the landlord forfeits the right to withhold any portion of the security deposit or to bring suit against the tenant for damages to the premises. 

"Is a security deposit last month’s rent?"
No. A security deposit with the landlord does not mean that the tenant does not need to pay the last month’s rent. A tenant who withholds the last month’s rent on the basis of the security deposit is presumed to have acted in bad faith and may be liable for triple the usual amount of damages. 

If you have any questions about landlord/tenant issues, The Moon Law Firm can help! Please contact us at 713-999-9398 or at JMoon@MoonLawFirm.com

Duties of Insurance Agents to Their Customers

I.          Duties Of An Insurance Agent

            There is a lot of confusion regarding what an insurance agent does and their responsibilities to their clients. This blog post will outline the basic responsibilities that insurance agents have to their customers.

            A.        Duty To Procure

            Perhaps the oldest and most discussed duty on the part of an agent is the duty to procure a policy for an insured. In Burroughs v. Bunch,[1] suit was brought by the insured against the agent for failing to obtain an insurance policy on a house which was under construction. The court of appeals then stated the controlling law as follows:

An insurance broker agreeing to obtain insurance has a legal duty to obtain same and if he cannot do so to notify his principal of failure.[2]

            The rule was later emphasized by the Beaumont Court of Appeals in Scott v. Conner.[3] The court stated the law as follows:

It may be laid down as a general rule that a broker or agent who, with a view to compensation for his services, undertakes to procure insurance on the property of another, and who fails to do so, will be held liable for his failure to do so.[4]

            Additionally, in Rainey-Mapes v. Queen Charters, Inc.,[5] the jury found that the agents had agreed to procure a policy free of a particular type of exclusion and were negligent in failing to do so.[6] Therefore, negligence in failing to procure insurance applies not only in failing to procure a policy all together, but in failing to procure a policy of the type requested by the insured.[7]

            The fact that the agent or broker may exercise reasonable diligence in attempting to procure the insurance will not relieve the agent or broker of liability where he has failed to notify the insured of his inability to obtain insurance.[8] In the Powell case, the court of appeals held that:

The rule seems to be settled that if an insurance agent or broker, with a view toward being compensated, undertakes to procure insurance for another and, through fault and neglect, fails to do so, he will be held liable for any damage that results thereby. The failure of an agent or broker, even after the exercise of reasonable diligence to procure insurance, to notify the insured of the agent’s inability to obtain insurance, will likewise impose liability upon him. [Citations omitted.] Obviously, then, an insurance agent has a duty to his client, not to advise the client that he is covered by insurance if he is, in fact, not so covered. The suit is not upon any oral contract of insurance. It is a negligence action. The mere fact that workmen’s compensation coverage on only part of Narried’s business could not be obtained was no defense to the theory of this action. If it could not be obtained after the agent had undertaken to procure the insurance, the failure of the agent to notify the insured of his inability was actionable.[9]

            The basis for imposing liability in this situation is that the agent induced the insured to rely upon his/her promise to procure insurance. As a result the plaintiff reasonably assumed he was insured, when he was not, against the cause which caused his loss.[10]

An agent must also keep clients informed as to progress of application, particularly where client could have avoided risk until coverage was secured.[11] There is also a duty to inform the client if an agent is unable to place the requested insurance.[12]

            Lastly, in order to establish causation of damages, a plaintiff must establish the availability of an insurance policy that would have provided the requested coverage.[13] If no policy would have provided the requested coverage, then a failure to procure insurance cannot be proven.[14]

            B.        Duty To Keep Insured Informed

            Texas courts have held that an agent has a duty to keep his or her clients fully informed so that they can remain safely insured.[15] The Texas Supreme Court, in May v. USAA, recognized a duty on the part of an agent “to keep his or her clients fully informed so that they can remain safely insured.”[16] Additionally, in Trinity Universal Ins. Co. v. Burnette, the court held that an agent has a duty to renew policy, replace it, or notify client of non-renewal.[17] Most commonly, an agent will satisfy this duty by informing an insured of a non-renewal, lapse or cancelation of insurance.

            This issue typically arises in the context of policy expiration dates. In Kitching v. Zamora,[18] the issue before the court was whether an insurance agent could be held liable for failing to keep a customer informed about the expiration date of the customer’s insurance policy. The Texas Supreme Court held that:

An insurance agent, who receives commissions from a customer’s payment of insurance policy premiums, has a duty of reasonably attempting to keep that customer informed about the customer’s insurance policy expiration date when the agent receives information pertaining to the expiration date that is intended for the customer.[19]

            Additionally, this duty to keep an insured informed has been extended to other parties as well. In the Corn case, a mortgage company was a named insured under the policy and also paid the premiums. The holding in the Kitching case was extended when the court held that:

An insurance agent who receives a commission from the payment of the insurance policy premium by the named mortgagee in the policy, knowing that the mortgagee pays for the coverage and whose servicing of the policy includes notification to the insured of the expiration and nonrenewal of the policy, has a duty of reasonably attempting to keep the mortgagee informed about the policy expiration date and nonrenewal.[20]

            C.        Duty In Selection Of Company

            The duty to exercise care in the selection of company has been recognized by Texas courts, particularly in the context of the solvency of the insurers. In Higginbotham & Associates, Inc. v. Greer, the court held that an agent could not be held liable for losses resulting from an insurer's insolvency if the insurer was solvent at the time that the policy was procured, unless the agent or broker subsequently learned or should have learned of facts or circumstances adversely affecting the security of the coverage and failed to take reasonable steps to protect the insured at a time when such steps could have been taken.[21] More specifically, an agent should check the insurer's rating with services such as the National Association of Insurance Commissioners' Report, or Best's Insurance Report, and to avoid placing coverage with an insurer that has received an unfavorable rating.          

            D.        Duty To Acquaint Oneself With Insured’s Business

            At least one court has held there is a duty on the part of the agent to acquaint him or herself with the insured’s business. In Frank B. Hall & Co. v. Beach, Inc.,[22] the insured was a trucking company primarily engaged in the business of hauling and rigging oilfield equipment. The insured’s agent procured a policy with an exclusion for “lifting and rigging” and a definition for the term “in transit” which placed damage suffered by the insured outside of coverage. In addressing the duty owed by the agent, the court of appeals held that an agent’s admitted ignorance of the insured’s business was sufficient factual basis to support a jury’s finding of negligence.[23]

[1] Burroughs v. Bunch, 210 S.W.2d 211 (Tex.Civ.App.—El Paso 1948, writ ref'd).

[2] Id. at 214.

[3] Scott v. Conner, 403 S.W.2d 453 (Tex.Civ.App.—Beaumont 1966, no writ).

[4] Id. at 457.

[5] Rainey-Mapes v. Queen Charters, Inc., 729 S.W.2d 907 (Tex.App.—San Antonio 1987writ dism'd by agr.).

[6] Id. at 913.

[7] See May v. United Services Association of America, 844 S.W.2d 666 (Tex. 1992); Critchfield v. Smith, 151 S.W.3d 225 (Tex.App.—Tyler 2004, pet. denied); Talamantez v. State, 790 S.W.2d 33 (Tex.App.—San Antonio 1990, pet ref’d).

[8] Powell v. Narried, 463 S.W.2d 43, 45 (Tex. Civ. App.--El Paso 1971, writ ref'd n.r.e.)

[9] Id. at 45.

[10] May, at 669.

[11] Gulf-Tex Brokerage v. McDade and Associates, 433 F. Supp. 1015 (S.D. Tex. 1977).

[12] Sonic Systems Intern., Inc. v. Croix, 278 S.W.3d 377 (Tex. App. Houston 14th Dist. 2008), reh'g overruled, (Mar .5, 2009) and review denied, (May 28, 2010) (duty to inform the client promptly if unable to place requested insurance); Zuniga v. Allstate Ins. Co., 693 S.W.2d 735 (Tex. App. San Antonio 1985) (same).

[13] Metro Allied Ins. Agency, Inc. v. Lin, 304 S.W.3d 830 (Tex. 2009).

[14] Trinity Universal Ins. Co. v. Burnette, 560 S.W.2d 440 (Tex. Civ. App. Beaumont 1977, no writ).

[15] Id.

[16] May v. United Services Ass'n of America, 844 S.W.2d 666 (Tex.1992).

[17] Trinity Universal Ins. Co. v. Burnette, 560 S.W.2d 440 (Tex. Civ. App. Beaumont 1977, no writ).

[18] Kitching v. Zamora, 695 S.W.2d 553 (Tex.1985).

[19] Id. at 554.

[20] Horn v. Hedgecoke Ins. Agency, 836 S.W.2d 296, 299 (Tex. App.--Amarillo 1992, writ denied)

[21] Higginbotham & Associates, Inc. v. Greer, 738 S.W.2d 45 (Tex. App. Texarkana 1987, writ denied).

[22] Frank B. Hall & Co. v. Beach, Inc.,733 S.W.2d 251 (Tex.App.—Corpus Christi 1987, writ ref’d n.r.e.).

[23] Id. at 261.