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HOUSTON CASE LAW ON MALPRACTICE CLAIMS

Certificate of Merit [ in suit against provider of professional services ]

Curtis & Windham Architects, Inc. (Tex.App.- Houston [1st Dist.] Feb. 25, 2010)(Jenning)
(
action complaining of overbilling did not arise from provision of professional services; hence no certificate of merit
required to support claim)
AFFIRM TRIAL COURT JUDGMENT: Opinion by
Justice Jennings     
Before Justices Jennings, Higley and Sharp   
01-09-00760-CV  Curtis & Windham Architects, Inc., Russel Windham and William Curtis
v. John E. Williams and Sheridan Williams    
Appeal from 127th District Court of Harris County
Trial Court Judge: Hon.
Ravi K. Sandill
The 2005 version of section 150.002, which is applicable to this case and entitled “Certificate of Merit,” provided,
(a)     In any action or arbitration proceeding for damages arising out of the provision of professional services by a
licensed or registered professional, the plaintiff shall be required to file with the complaint an affidavit of a third-
party licensed architect . . . competent to testify, holding the same professional license as, and practicing in the
same area of practice as the defendant, which affidavit shall set forth specifically at least one negligent act, error,
or omission claimed to exist and the factual basis for each such claim. The third-party . . . licensed architect shall
be licensed in this state and actively engaged in the practice of architecture . . . .
. . . .
(d)     The plaintiff’s failure to file the affidavit . . . shall result in dismissal of the complaint against the defendant.
This dismissal may be with prejudice.


Hughes v. Bay Area Montessori Houston, Inc. (Tex.App. - Houston [14th Dist.] Dec. 31, 2009)(Frost)
(
interlocutory appeal, professional malpractice suit)
This interlocutory appeal arises out of an architecture-malpractice case. An architect and architectural firm sought
dismissal of a school’s claims against them on the basis that the school claimant failed to comply with the certificate-
of-merit statute.  The trial court denied their motion to dismiss without stating the basis for the denial.  In a single
issue, the architect and architectural firm assert that the trial court incorrectly applied section 150.002 of the Texas
Civil Practice and Remedies Code because the affidavit filed by the school allegedly did not contain a mandatory
element.  Because the school’s cause of action accrued before the legislature amended the certificate-of-merit
statute to permit an interlocutory appeal from the denial of a motion to dismiss, this court lacks jurisdiction to
consider this appeal.
DISMISSED: Opinion by
Justice Frost    
Before Justices Brock Yates, Frost and Brown
14-09-00410-CV Brad Hughes and Bay Architects, Inc. ("BAI") v. Bay Area Montessori House, Inc.    
Appeal from 295th District Court of Harris County
Trial Court Judge:
Tracy Kee Christopher





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