Articles Tagged with Guest and Gray Law Firm

Published on:

Real-estate-law-imageKaufman County is in the midst of a historic residential construction boom. Anyone driving through Forney, Terrell, Kaufman or Crandall will attest to this fact. Neighborhoods are popping up, seemingly, overnight. With that, developers, builders and individual home buyers and sellers are seeing an equal rise in the number of real estate disputes.

In our office, the main issues seem to be with individual home builders performing substandard work or failing to complete the construction of new homes. This can create quite the mess for home buyers who took out construction loans and are now paying their current mortgage, on top of the interest on their construction loan. On top of that, due to shoddy construction practices, they are having to pay additional amounts out of pocket, or reworking loans, in order to have their homes completed. With that, Texas provides certain protections under the RCLA (Residential Construction Liability Act) which protects homeowners in the event that a home builder performs defective or substandard work on a new home. Homeowners are also having issues with eminent domain. Eminent domain/condemnation proceedings have been instituted against several landowners in the last few years for rights of way and easements for utility companies and roadways through TxDot. If you face condemnation for all or part of your property, you need to consult with the attorneys at Guest and Gray. We have successfully negotiated and tried condemnation cases for families and businesses across Kaufman County and East Texas.

For developers, we are seeing issues related to re-zoning and zoning variances, land-purchase disputes, disclosure issues and right of way and easement issues. Many of these issues may be addressed in Court through specific performance, declaratory judgment or a breach of contract case.

Published on:

EastTexasOilFieldOver the last several years, residents of more rural parts of northeast Texas have been victimized by TxDot, water districts, electric companies and co-ops, and the very cities and counties in which they live, all in the name of progress and purported “necessity”.

Eminent Domain is a real threat to landowners in Texas. Every single day, somewhere in this great state, someone is receiving a letter for the first time letting them know that their property is located within a region being taken for a public use and that they should “contact ____” for more information.

For the landowner, it can be heartbreaking. For someone who has built their dream home, having to give up part or all of that property for a new highway, or transmission towers, or a pipeline, is devastating. In most cases, we have rural landowners, ranchers and farmers, who are being burdened by the advancement of the population. We need pipelines, transmission towers and roadways, but that does not make it any easier for the landowner who’s property is being taken for the “greater good”.

Published on:

Most people that I have talked to about the proposed border wall along the U.S.-Mexico Border have been surprised to hear that the federal government does not already own the land necessary to build the wall. The next question that I receive is: well, does that mean that they have to take private landowners’ property away from them?

Well, yes, under the guise of eminent domain.

Eminent domain is the method by which the federal government will be required to pay the local borderlands property owners “just compensation” for the land they plan to use for the proposed border wall. “Just compensation” is measured by the fair market value of the land at the time of the taking. Exxon Pipeline Co. v. Zwahr, 88 S.W.3d 623, 627 (Tex. 2002).  Market value is the price the property will bring when offered for sale by one who desires to sell, but is not obliged to sell, and is bought by one who desires to buy, but is under no necessity of buying. City of Harlingen v. Estate of Sharboneau, 48 S.W.3d 177, 182 (Tex. 2001). The owner of the property can testify to its market value, even if he could not qualify to testify about the value of the property belonging to someone else. Porras v. Craig, 675 S.W.2d 503, 504 (Tex. 1984); see also Redman Homes, Inc. v. Ivy, 920 S.W.2d 664, 669 (Tex. 1996).

Published on:

ForneyPicForney is a town on the move. Literally. Even those of us who live in the city have to drive to get anywhere we want to go. Nothing is in walking distance. That is okay. As residents of Dallas-Fort Worth we are well accustomed to driving every where we go.

Guest and Gray Law Firm, P.C. has called Forney, Texas home for decades. Scott Gray and his father, Don Gray, served Forney for decades before joining forces with Robert Guest to become Guest and Gray in 2011. Most of our staff and several of our attorneys, including the author of this article, grew up in the Forney and Kaufman county areas (the author is from Crandall. Don’t hold that against me) and we have seen the exponential growth that is happening in our city and our county. Here is looking at you Terrell and Crandall.

What I have notice, just in the past year, is that if I fail to drive on one side of town for a while, when I finally do, there is a new neighborhood where a piece of land once stood. For instance, that I-20 corridor near FM 1641. There is a new neighborhood over there that I didn’t notice for about 6 months. I came back from court that way one day and BAM, there is a neighborhood off to the left. An entire neighborhood. Well, howdy new neighbors.

Published on:

Personal-Injury-Law-300x149In Texas, when a loved one is tragically killed as a result of someone else’s negligence, certain family members such as a surviving spouse, child and even parents may bring a wrongful death claim. The estate may also bring a survival claim for damages the deceased suffered prior to their death, such as pain and suffering and mental anguish.

Mesquite is a city that has a high number of automobile, motorcycle and trucking accidents due to the major highways and interstate that pass through its borders. Highway 635, Interstates 20 and 30 and numerous others allows hundreds of thousands of people to drive in and around Mesquite every single day. In 2017 alone, Mesquite 15 fatality accidents resulting in 16 deaths with an overall number of over 1,600 accidents.

Each family that is made to suffer the loss of a family member deserves the right to go after the person that caused the death of their loved one. At Guest and Gray, the goal of our experienced wrongful death attorneys is to right the wrongs by pursuing the family and the estate’s claims to the fullest extent of the law to obtain the only type of remedy the civil law provides: compensation.

Published on:

m-cc-ups-and-fedex-300x202This time of year, it is not uncommon to see UPS drivers dashing from stop to stop delivering packages, like Santa trying to make it to every child before Christmas morning. Just last week I was driving on Highway 175 towards Kemp and I saw a UPS delivery truck driving faster than I was on the highway and HE WAS ON THE SERVICE ROAD.

That kind of dangerous driving leads to accidents. UPS puts a lot of pressure on these drivers to deliver an almost impossible amount of packages during the Christmas season. That is why you hear about so many drivers simply dumping out packages on the side of the road because they simply couldn’t make their delivery times and were desperate.

By the way, those UPS trucks are big, commercial vehicles, so if that driver doing 75+ mph on the service road had struck another vehicle at that speed, its pretty much guaranteed that there would be significant injuries, and possibly fatal.

Published on:

personalinjury3-300x201Guest and Gray Law Firm is Kaufman and Rockwall county’s trusted, local personal injury law firm. We are a client driven and results oriented personal injury law firm. Our personal injury team is dedicated to serving the needs of the injured. Our personal injury practice is diverse, spanning from automobile accidents and 18-wheeler wrecks to dog attacks and beyond. No matter the case, our experienced attorneys and knowledgeable staff are prepared to take on the at-fault party and their insurance company.

We are a Local Firm, Dedicated to our Local Community.

We are not a big name Dallas law firm. We like it that way. We don’t have call centers full of assistants. We don’t have claims specialists running your case. We have lawyers dedicated to each matter who personally reviews your case and handles the negotiations with the at-fault party and their insurer. If you call our office, you can speak to your attorney, not their assistant or a claims specialist. Our staff is trained to handle the needs of each case. We do it this way not because we can’t do what those guys in Dallas do. We do it this way because we want to provide the best possible service to our local community. Our main office is in Forney, Texas. We also have an office in Rockwall to serve Rockwall county clients. This is where we are from. Scott Gray, one of our founding partners, graduated from Forney High School. David HagEstad, our personal injury associate graduated from Crandall High School. Most of our staff and assistants are local and grew up in the Kaufman county area. We believe in staying local and serving the community where we grew up. We believe this makes us uniquely capable of serving this area because, well, we know the area. We know what areas are particularly dangerous for drivers and where the majority of accidents occur. We know why. We know that Kaufman county and Rockwall county are experiencing unprecedented growth and that the increased traffic in areas like Rockwall, Forney and Terrell are leading to more accidents. We know that Terrell’s commercial growth will lead to more truck accidents and Forney’s residential growth will lead to more injury accidents involving passenger vehicles.

Published on:

Truckaccidents-300x132Guest and Gray prides itself in being the largest and highest rated law firm in Kaufman county. We are number one because we care about our clients and their situation. Personal injury cases are just that: personal. They happen to real people and it causes REAL problems in their lives. No accident situation can bring more drama to a family’s life than an 18-wheeler accident. These are simply the most destructive types of accidents that can occur on Kaufman county roads. Every year, Kaufman county residents and passers-through die on our local highways due to negligent truck drivers and as our roads become more congested and traveled as a result of development, the numbers will only go up.

Kaufman county is one of the fastest growing counties in Texas. Growth in cities like Forney, Terrell and Crandall will lead the way over the next few years. All three of those cities are corridors in and through Kaufman county with interstate highways and state highways leading right through them. Forney and Terrell have the highly traveled highway 80 and interstate 20 passing right through them and Crandall, as sort of the gateway to East Texas has highway 175. All three cities are gearing up for exponential growth over the next few years as pastureland is converted to shopping, retail and most of all, homes. Crandall has the Wildcat Ranch Development that plans to bring nearly 3,100 unites, which would effectively more than double the population of Crandall alone. Travel anywhere in Forney and you will see new community development and shopping and retail going in, and Terrell leads the way in commercial development. The result of this population increase will be an economic boom. Increased economic out put means an increase in commercial traffic. Commercial traffic means 18-wheelers and other commercial vehicles traveling on our roadways will only increase to meet demand.

At Guest and Gray, our personal injury lawyers see this as being a potential problem for our local citizenry and those who travel our major highways to get to and from home and work. The greater the number of commercial vehicles means that our current and future citizens will be at a greater risk of being injured due to negligent commercial truck drivers as they come into our area. A semi truck, without the tractor-trailer, weighs around 80 thousand pounds, without a tractor-trailer attached. In comparison, the average passenger vehicle weighs about 5,000 pounds. When the two meet at high speeds, the results can be absolutely devastating.

Published on:

ThanksgivingMost people travel on Thanksgiving, whether it be to a family gathering or to a restaurant or for black Friday shopping deals. It is a time to give thanks for the blessings we have in life. A time to relax (or stress out completely) and eat way too much food. For most, the holiday goes without a hiccup and life returns to normal after the holiday. For some, they wake up to the horrors of a dirty kitchen and some family member sleeping on the couch.

For others still, it can be a nightmare. Thanksgiving is one of the most dangerous travel holidays in America. More people travel for the Thanksgiving holiday than for Christmas. This means that roadways are busier than normal, which inevitably leads to accidents. For restaurants and bars there is something known as “black Wednesday” which is the Wednesday before Thanksgiving and may just be the busiest night of the year. This means that a lot of people who have been out drinking may also be on the roadways with you and your family. To help you get around some of this craziness, here are a few safety tips from your friendly personal injury lawyers at Guest and Gray Law Firm:

  1. Don’t Drink and Drive– If you do drink and have to drive, get a designated driver. Uber can literally be a lifesaver. Pay the money, its cheaper than dying. Trust me. You are far more likely to be involved in an accident after drinking. Alcohol slows your ability to respond to stimuli while driving. This includes other drivers, animals and even things in your car.
Published on:

gavel1-300x169Guest and Gray Law Firm is the firm to turn to when you have a legal problem. Our practice is quickly growing and we are the trusted Rockwall criminal and civil litigation firm. We are proud to own the title of being the largest and most highly rated local Rockwall law firm.

Sure, you can call a Dallas firm for help, but why? Guest and Gray, P.C. offers the same excellent service but we have convenient office locations for our Rockwall clients. Live in Rockwall or north of Rockwall? Our Rockwall office is located off of TL Townsend just passed the Rockwall county courthouse. Live south of Rockwall towards Heath? It may be better for you to meet us in our Forney location in downtown Forney just off the old townsquare near the city offices. Wherever you may be in Rockwall county, Guest and Gray, P.C. is the local choice.

We are skilled in all different practice areas that you may need, whether it be criminal defense, family law, civil litigation or personal injury, we have a lawyer (or two) just for you. Our attorneys are aggressive and fight hard for each client. No case is too big. We have the resources to take your case the distance. Period.