by JoAnn Storey

A “writ refused” opinion in cases decided after June 14, 1927, have the same precedential value of a Texas Supreme Court opinion. Mark E. Steiner, Not Fade Away: The Continuing Relevance of “Writ Refused” Opinions, The Appellate Advocate, Vol. XI, No. 2, p. 3 (February 1999); see also Hyundai Motor Co. v. Vasquez, 189 S.W.3d 743, 754 n. 52 (Tex. 2006) (noting that case decided after 1927 “carries the imprimatur of Texas Supreme Court precedent.”).

Vasquez relied on the Green Book as authority. The most recent version of the Green Book says the writ refused designation had that effect starting in 1892. See also State v. Clear Channel Outdoor, Inc., 2012 WL 4465338, *4 n. 3 (Tex.App.—Houston [1st Dist.] 2012, pet. filed).

Point is: if you are feeling a bit insecure about citing some really old court of appeals’ case, you may find that it has the precedential value of a Texas Supreme Court opinion if the writ/petition was refused.