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Sued by Cavalry - Update: Texas Justice Court - Lost, Appealed to County - Lost, Further Appeal?


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2 hours ago, bartos said:

I'm not sure if I should file the Notice of Appeal now, or wait for the "Requests for Findings of Facts and Conclusions of Law" to come back, since filing the Notice of Appeal starts the timer on when I have to file my brief.

I'm also not at all familiar with texas procedure, but I'm wondering why they filed a notice of nonsuit (at the post-judgment status of the case), rather than some sort of release or satisfaction of judgment.

They probably have a reason for doing so, such as it might protect their interests or exposure in some way. Or, if there was more than one named defendant.

In their notice, they ask the court to sign an order acknowledging the nonsuit. The date of the signing of that order seems to effect at least some appellate deadlines, as noted here:

Quote

However, the signing of an order dismissing a case, not the filing of a notice of nonsuit, is the starting point for determining when a trial court’s plenary power expires. Appellate timetables do not run from the date a nonsuit is filed, but rather from the date the trial court signs an order of dismissal.

An order is necessary in order to establish appellate deadlines.  In addition, a deadline needs to be established for the court’s plenary powers in light of the balance of Rule 162, which specifically allows the trial court to assess sanctions, attorneys’ fees, and costs after the nonsuit is taken.

You should also research if a post-judgment notice of nonsuit is proper, or at least what its effect is when filed at the post judgment stage. See here:

Quote

A plaintiff generally has an absolute right to nonsuit his case, and thus obtain a dismissal without prejudice, at any time before he has introduced all of his evidence other than rebuttal evidence.

The supreme court held that a plaintiff's right to nonsuit is subject to a further limitation: "Once a judge announces a decision that adjudicates a claim, that claim
is no longer subject to the plaintiff's right to nonsuit." Hyundai Motor Co., 892 S.W.2d at 855

 

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On 7/18/2022 at 12:06 PM, bartos said:

I wonder if it's worth it to make a motion to vacate the judgment?

There isn't anything you can do about it now. Res judicata bars any further suit on the subject matter of the original law suit.  You lost the appeal, the plaintiffs been paid. There isn't any vacating the judgment or anything else. I would stop poking the bear while I was ahead. If you continue at this you could potentially end up being sued for malicious prosecution as well as their costs to defend the suit and have it dismissed. You should have gotten an attorney when it was appealed de novo to CCL.

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