Lee v. Hunter
Dallas Court of Appeals, No. 05-16-00325-CV (October 27, 2016)
Justices Fillmore, Brown (Opinion), and O’Neill
Under the Texas Tort Claims Act, an “employee” is a person who is in the paid service of a governmental unit, but does not include a person “who performs tasks the details of which the governmental unit does not have the legal right to control.” Lee provided evidence that UT Southwestern controlled the schedule she worked, the facility where she worked, the type of patients she saw, the type of medical services she was authorized to render, and the billing for her services. The Dallas Court of Appeals found that evidence sufficient to establish Lee’s immunity under the statute, even though she was required to exercise independent medical judgment—which UT Southwestern did not control—in the treatment of her patients. The Court therefore reversed the trial court’s denial of Lee’s motion for summary judgment and rendered judgment in Lee’s favor.