Texas Lawbook: The George Bramblett Dividend

08/21/2016

Forty-eight years ago, George Bramblett picked his first jury and tried his first case.

Out of law school only a little more than a year, Bramblett represented an insurance company refusing to compensate an extraordinarily sympathetic victim of a car crash money, for his injuries.

The facts were simple: A University of Texas football player driving on I-35 near Hillsboro fell asleep at the wheel of his vehicle. His car swerved and hit another car driven by a U.S. soldier.

“When I first saw the facts of the case, I understood why other lawyers didn’t want to defend it,” Bramblett says.

Bramblett developed a legal argument and strategy that many thought was risky. He admitted liability. The facts, after all, were clear. But he challenged the plaintiff’s claims for damages.

“Our theory was to agree that the accident was our fault, but that the plaintiff was not injured nearly as severely as he claimed. In fact, we demonstrated that he clearly exaggerated his injuries.”

The two-day trial ended with the jury finding for the plaintiff, but it awarded zero damages.

Five decades later, Bramblett is one of the most successful and respected commercial trial lawyers in the Southwest, which is quite a compliment when you realize that he practiced in an era when trial lawyers reigned as gods in Texas.

“I enjoyed cases that many considered unwinnable or cases that featured unsympathetic clients,” he says. “Plus, I loved being in court. It was exhilarating.”

Excerpted from Texas Lawbook. To read the full article, see the PDF here.

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