TCAA/TML Legal Defense Program: Amicus Briefs and Comments Filed

TCAA, in conjunction with the Texas Municipal League, files amicus briefs and comments in support of cities on many issues. To keep up to date on the status of these issues, go to https://www.tml.org/p/AmicusBriefUpdate_060618.pdf.

ImmunityOrozco v. County of El Paso, No. 17-0381 in the Supreme Court of Texas.

This case revolves around the death of an off-duty sheriff’s deputy. He was killed while driving his marked patrol vehicle home from a “moonlighting” job, and his family claimed that they should be entitled to workers’ compensation benefits. The Texas Association of Counties, Texas Association of Counties Risk Management Pool, Texas Municipal League, TML Intergovernmental Risk Pool, Conference of Urban Counties, and Texas City Attorneys Association, as Amici Curiae, filed a brief acknowledging the tragic death.  However, Amici argued that an off-duty uniformed patrol officer is not necessarily in the course and scope of employment when injured while traveling on public roads in a marked patrol vehicle, and that was the case here. The court of appeals opinion concluding that the situation in this case is not in the course and scope is consistent with well-established law. If the Supreme Court departs from its prudent and balanced approach to course and scope of employment analysis to capture the tragic facts in this case, the decision will undermine decades of precedent that properly interprets the definition of course and scope of employment under the Texas Workers’ Compensation Act. The brief was filed on June 4, 2018.

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