Case study

Texas Supreme Court Removes Jurisdictional Loophole and Clarifies that Property Owner on the Houston Ship Channel has the Right to Appeal

June 25, 2024 Case Study

Harley Channelview Properties, LLC v. Harley Marine Gulf, LLC, No. 23-0078 (Texas Supreme Court May 10, 2024).

On May 10, 2024, the Texas Supreme Court removed a loophole in the caselaw regarding appellate jurisdiction, holding that Beck Redden’s client, Harley Channelview Properties, LLC, has the right to an immediate appeal from a partial summary judgment order that required Harley Channelview to sell certain property in just 30 days—before a final judgment.

Harley Channelview owns property along the Houston Ship Channel. Its lessee, Harley Marine Gulf, LLC, sought to invoke an old option to purchase the property. The lessee persuaded the trial court to grant immediate performance of the now-expired option, prior to appellate review on the merits. Harley Channelview appealed, explaining that the 30-day order is an appealable temporary injunction. The court of appeals, however, held that Harley Channelview had no right to immediate review; it reasoned that the 30-day order is too “permanent” to be an appealable temporary injunction. The court of appeals also denied mandamus relief.

The Texas Supreme Court granted an emergency stay preventing enforcement of the trial court’s 30-day order directing Harley Channelview to hand over its Ship Channel property. On the merits, Harley Channelview argued that trial courts cannot immunize their injunctions from appellate review by granting too much relief. The Supreme Court agreed. It held that Harley Channelview has the right to appeal: “Directing a party to immediately convey real property based on an interim ruling that a claim has merit is a temporary injunction, from which a party may appeal.”

The appeal was argued by Beck Redden appellate partner David M. Gunn and appellate attorney Joshua S. Smith. The team also included Beck Redden appellate attorney John Adcock.

Gunn_David-sml
David M. Gunn 713.951.6290
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Joshua S. Smith 713.951.6273
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John Adcock 713.951.6239
Appellate