No. 13-17-00261-CV.


Court of Appeals of Texas, Thirteenth District, Corpus Christi, Edinburg.

Attorney(s) appearing for the Case

Jaime A. Saenz , Alison W. Colvin , for Bissell Homecare Inc., Appellee.

Charles H. Sierra , for Carlos Gomez Amaya, Appellant.

Before Justices Contreras, Benavides, and Longoria.


Memorandum Opinion by Justice, LONGORIA.

Relators Villalobos & Vaughan, PLLC and Jeffrey R. Vaughan filed a petition for writ of mandamus and a motion for stay in the above cause on May 16, 2017. Through this original proceeding, relators seek to compel the trial court to vacate an order disqualifying relator's counsel. Through their motion for stay, relators seek to stay the underlying trial court proceedings pending resolution of this original proceeding.

Mandamus is an extraordinary remedy. In re H.E.B. Grocery Co., 492 S.W.3d 300, 302 (Tex. 2016) (orig. proceeding) (per curiam). Mandamus relief is proper to correct a clear abuse of discretion when there is no adequate remedy by appeal. In re Christus Santa Rosa Health Sys., 492 S.W.3d 276, 279 (Tex. 2016) (orig. proceeding). The relator bears the burden of proving both of these requirements. In re H.E.B. Grocery Co., 492 S.W.3d at 302; Walker v. Packer, 827 S.W.2d 833, 840 (Tex. 1992) (orig. proceeding). In addition to other requirements, the relator must include a statement of facts supported by citations to "competent evidence included in the appendix or record," and must also provide "a clear and concise argument for the contentions made, with appropriate citations to authorities and to the appendix or record." See generally TEX. R. APP. P. 52.3. In this regard, it is clear that relator must furnish an appendix or record sufficient to support the claim for mandamus relief. See id. R. 52.3(k) (specifying the required contents for the appendix); R. 52.7(a) (specifying the required contents for the record).

An abuse of discretion occurs when a trial court's ruling is arbitrary and unreasonable or is made without regard for guiding legal principles or supporting evidence. In re Nationwide Ins. Co. of Am., 494 S.W.3d 708, 712 (Tex. 2016) (orig. proceeding); Ford Motor Co. v. Garcia, 363 S.W.3d 573, 578 (Tex. 2012). We determine the adequacy of an appellate remedy by balancing the benefits of mandamus review against the detriments. In re Essex Ins. Co., 450 S.W.3d 524, 528 (Tex. 2014) (orig. proceeding); In re Prudential Ins. Co. of Am., 148 S.W.3d 124, 136 (Tex. 2004)) (orig. proceeding). As applicable to this proceeding, it is well established that, if the trial court has abused its discretion in ruling on a motion to disqualify counsel, mandamus is appropriate to correct the trial court's erroneous ruling because there is no adequate remedy by appeal. In re Sanders, 153 S.W.3d 54, 56 (Tex. 2004) (orig. proceeding) (per curiam); In re Epic Holdings, Inc., 985 S.W.2d 41, 52 (Tex. 1998) (orig. proceeding).

The Court, having examined and fully considered the petition for writ of mandamus and the applicable law, is of the opinion that the relators have not shown themselves entitled to the relief sought insofar as their appendix and record are insufficient to establish the right to relief. Accordingly, we deny the petition for writ of mandamus and the motion to stay the trial court proceedings without prejudice. See TEX. R. APP. P. 52.8(a),(d).


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