Chesapeake Operating wants slip & fall dismissed after PU law firm backs out

David Yates Mar. 18, 2015, 1:22pm


Chesapeake Operating recently filed a motion to dismiss for want of prosecution in a slip and fall lawsuit, arguing the plaintiff has yet to hire new counsel six months after the Provost Umphrey Law Firm withdrew.

George Jones filed suit against Chesapeake and Precision Drilling Halliburton Exploration on Jan. 8, 2014, in the Jefferson County District Court.

According to the complaint, on Jan. 8, 2012, Jones was seriously injured while working for Precision Drilling on a job site managed by the defendants when he slipped and fell.

PU attorneys Zona Jones and Cody Dishon originally represented Jones.

However, court records show that on Oct. 15 Judge Milton Shuffield, 136th District Court, agreed to allow the PU attorneys to withdraw, giving Jones two months to locate additional counsel.

Chesapeake filed its motion to dismiss on March 2, asserting “plaintiff has failed to retain additional counsel in compliance with the court’s order.”

A week earlier, the suit’s other defendant, Halliburton, had its motion for summary judgment granted on Feb. 25, court records show.

Halliburton filed the motion on Feb. 2, arguing that enough time for discovery had passed and “there is simply no evidence that Halliburton controlled the premises in question or was aware of the dangerous condition.”

The complaint alleges the injury occurred because the companies were negligent by failing to properly inspect and maintain the area, failing to give adequate warnings of the unsafe condition and failing to use the care of a reasonably prudent person.

Chesapeake is represented by Houston attorney Jeffrey Davis of the Gardere Wynne Sewell law firm.

Halliburton was represented by M.C. Carrington, attorney for the Beaumont law firm Mehaffy Weber.

Case No. D195-117

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