Landowners Lose Negligence Battle in Texas

by Elizabeth Alford on December 14, 2016

The Texas Supreme Court sides favors oil company over landowners in a three year old negligence case.

Related: Texas Mineral Owners Sue Marathon Oil

Michal and Myra Cerny from Karnes County, TX have been fighting for years to gain compensation for the suffering they claim from the oil and gas activity on their property. The couple alleges damages to their home adn health have caused a significantly seriously reduced quality of life.

Their battle made its way to the Texas’ highest court last year, and earlier this month, the justices denied the Cerny’s petition to hear the case. They upheld the lower court’s ruling that the couple couldn’t prove their issues were tied to oil and gas activity.

“In 2013, the Cernys filed suit against Marathon and Plains alleging that their negligent oilfield operations subjected them to toxic chemicals and noxious odors that worsened their existing health problems, caused new health problems, and damaged their property by creating sinkholes and damaging the home’s pier and beam foundation.”- TX 4th Court of Appeals

The original case was dismissed and their first appeal failed when the courts ruled that family didn’t meet the legal standards for nuisance and negligence claims. Now that the Supreme Court is refusing to review the case, the Cherny’s have no other recourse to gain financial restitution.

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Some are concerned that the decision may have a broader impact on pending and future litigation where landowners claim health-related personal injury claims.

Read more about Cherny v Marathon Oil Corp

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