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Texas Legal Blog

$2.7 Million awarded to property owners for pipeline damages

In Blanco County a court appointed panel awarded 4 property owners $2.7 Million in damages caused by condemnation proceedings with Kinder Morgan and the Permian Highway Pipeline. This was considerably different than the amount Kinder Morgan proposed for their damages. In fact, no award for damages exceeded $21,000. The bar has now been set in the Hill Country for those landowners opposing Kinder Morgan's low ball offers.

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TXDOT announces it plans to move forward with improvements to SH 36

As TXDOT continues to work on the Highway 36A corridor they will also begin projects to improve the existing SH 36 in Fort Bend and Brazoria counties. There are three key segments to these projects which include widening SH 36 to 4 lanes and reconstruction. The first segment is from FM 2218 to south of Needville. The second segment runs south of Needville to the Brazoria county line. The third segment runs from the fort bend county line to north of CR 467/Hogg Ranch Rd. All of which are letting October 2019 for construction.

How do you prove a loved one was the victim of undue influence?

One of the most common reasons that family members contest a loved one's estate plan after they die is that they believe they were subject to undue influence by someone who convinced, cajoled or tricked them into changing the terms of their will or other documents. Often the alleged influencer is a boyfriend or girlfriend, a caretaker, a business manager or someone who only recently came into that person's life.

Proving to a court that there was an undue influence isn't a simple process. All states require different elements, so you need to know what the law says in the state where your loved one resided at the time of their death. However, typically the party contesting the estate plan has to show that the alleged influencer got the decedent to change their intended asset distributions by exerting undue influence.

What you should know if you're receiving an inheritance

You've learned that you are inheriting money from a family member or someone else you were close to who passed away. This often brings a mixture of emotions. You're sorry that they're gone, but you're pleased that they included you in their estate plan.

Whether you were expecting the inheritance or it's a complete surprise, it's essential to fully understand any terms that come with it. It's also important -- particularly if it's a substantial amount -- to get some professional financial, investment and/or tax advice in addition to any legal advice you might need.

Do you have a succession plan in place for your Texas business?

If you have spent a lifetime building up a successful business in Texas, you probably have an idea of what you expect to happen to that business when you die. Many people want their loved ones to continue to profit from the company they created without taking any concrete steps to ensure that happens.

Business owners who don't plan for their death as part of their business strategy could wind up doing their company, their staff and their family a great disservice. Without an actionable succession plan, your business could close before the probate court ever handles your estate.

Update on IPL Project First Phase

A milestone in the creation of the 150 mile 2.3 billion dollar Integrated Pipeline Project (IPL) is about to be reached. After nearly four years of construction and 12 years since its initial proposal, the first 50 miles of this giant pipeline will begin operation. This is a huge initial step for the pipeline; which isn't expected to be completed in its entirety until 2035. The project was built in partnership with the city of Dallas, and will bring 150 million gallons of water the city. Getting to this point was neither easy nor inexpensive.

Don't let copyright issues on your blog damage your business

Nearly every business has a blog these days. Consumers are hungry for information, and Google's algorithms pretty much demand that websites keep producing new information if they want to stay on top of the search pile.

Unfortunately, it's easy for bloggers to make mistakes with copyrighted material. Whether you're producing your blogs in-house or hiring an outside writer, it's important that you know what can get your business hit with a copyright infringement lawsuit.

Trans-Pecos Pipeline

A year has passed and the Trans-Pecos Pipeline is affecting property owners, but isn't doing what it was designed for. The controversial pipeline has caused countless property disputes since its creation at hands of a Mexico backed plan to send gas from the Permian Basin south of the border. The fact that Mexico is not using any of the gas is only adding to their frustrations.

Case of he said/she said - landlocked property case ruling in Amarillo County

Landlocked property is property that does not have its own means to enter or exit without crossing someone else's property. This was the case for the Gordon's. When the Gordon's purchased the land in 1971 from the Bremser's they had a verbal agreement. They had access to their property from 2 separate roads. However, Mr. Bremser died and the new owner Mr. Demmon wasn't as neighborly. In fact, Mr. Demmon put up a locked gate denying Mr. Gordon access and forcing him to take him to court. The court did grant Mr. Gordon partial easement but not what he wanted. The bottom line is you have to put things in writing. In the old days, if you gave your word it was a binding contract. People die and take that contract with them to their grave. So, it is always best to have it in writing.

TXDOT WANTS THE PUBLIC'S INPUT

The Fredericksburg Relief Route Study is analyzing a proposed route to allow drivers to drive around the town instead of going through town to alleviate traffic congestion. They are having an open house to gather input from the public. If you are unable to attend you can also submit your input by phone: (512) 517-7251 - Email: [email protected] or mail

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