Houston, TX (713) 681-3070 | Lexington, KY (800) 715-6268 info@marksfirm.com

    Our Results

    Experience You Can Count on

    Our web site describes only some of the cases that the attorneys at Marks Balette Giessel & Young, P.L.L.C. have worked on in the past. In order to provide an understanding of the experience of our attorneys, results obtained prior to joining the firm are also included. 

    The firm’s unparalleled commitment and dedication to excellence has resulted in numerous verdicts and settlements. A few of these are:

    TOP 140 CASES (As of January 28, 2020)

     

    #ResultAgeCase SummaryState
    1$160,000,00081Beaten by another residentTX
    2$83,000,00083Pressure sores and dehydrationTX
    3$71,900,000n/aUnderstaffingAR
    4$47,500,000n/aZurich Insurance Partner w/ NH ChainTX
    5$23,000,00030Product liabilityTX
    6$13,500,00090Pressure soresTX
    7$12,000,00044Improper intubationTX
    8$9,750,00072Pressure sores, dehydration and painTX
    9$8,352,97960Cardiac tamponadeOK
    10$6,970,00066Pressure sores and infectionsTX
    11$6,000,00077Restraint asphyxiationTX
    12$5,700,00070Pressure soresTX
    13$5,400,00046Fournier’s gangrene (penis) and deathWA
    14$5,400,00093Pressure soresTX
    15$5,300,00089Pressure sores, dehydration and painTX
    16$5,000,00099Senior Living Center, AbandonmentAZ
    17$5,000,00088Pressure sores, pain and dehydrationTX
    18$5,000,00074Pressure sores and dehydrationTX
    19$5,000,00079Pressure soresTX
    20$5,000,00072Pressure sores and dehydrationTX
    21$4,750,00092Pressure sores and painTX
    22$4,700,00086Pressure sores and dehydrationTX
    23$4,600,00087Abuse, fracturesTX
    24$4,250,00069Pressure sores and painTX
    25$4,100,00064Pressure sores and dehydrationTX
    26$4,000,00083Fecal ImpactionOK
    27$4,000,00061RapeTX
    28$4,000,00097Pressure sores with maggotsTX
    29$4,000,00066AsphyxiationTX
    30$3,900,00075DehydrationTX
    31$3,850,00082Pressure soresTX
    32$3,825,00091Pressure sores and infectionTX
    33$3,825,00087Pressure sores, malnutrition and painTX
    34$3,750,00062Pressure sore and painAR
    35$3,600,00077Trucking accidentAR
    36$3,600,00073Pressure sores, dehydration and painTX
    37$3,500,000Pressure soresTX
    38$3,500,00073Dehydration and painTX
    39$3,500,00081Dehydration and painTX
    40$3,450,00086Pressure sores and painWA
    41$3,400,00055Pipeline rupture caused hearing lossTX
    42$3,400,00052Workplace injuryTX
    43$3,100,00081Pressure sores and dehydrationTX
    44$3,000,00081Pressure sores and sepsisKY
    45$3,000,00058Pressure sores and painKY
    46$3,000,000Pressure sores and dehydrationTX
    47$3,000,00086Pressure sores, dehydration and painTX
    48$3,000,00058Pressure sores, infection and painKY
    49$2,950,00089Pressure sores and dehydrationOK
    50$2,950,00086Pressure soresTX
    51$2,900,00087Pressure sores and painTX
    52$2,900,00082Pressure soresTX
    53$2,875,00074Pressure sores and infectionTX
    54$2,800,00083Pressure sores, dehydration, and fallsTX
    55$2,800,00080Pressure soresTN
    56$2,776,39676GangreneTN
    57$2,750,00097Pressure sore and infectionKY
    58$2,650,00081Pressure sores and painNC
    59$2,634,40445Pressure sores and infectionTX
    60$2,600,00085Pressure sores, dehydration and painAL
    61$2,600,000Pressure sores and dehydrationTX
    62$2,500,00078Fecal impaction, dehydrationOK
    63$2,500,00078Ventilator deathTX
    64$2,500,00086Pressure sores and painTX
    65$2,500,00088Fecal impaction and dehydrationTX
    66$2,500,00082FallsTX
    67$2,500,00087Pressure soresTX
    68$2,500,00080AsphyxiationTX
    69$2,500,00074Pressure sores and sepsisTX
    70$2,475,00086Cardiac arrestTX
    71$2,400,00085Fall, Subdural hematoma, pneumoniaOK
    72$2,360,00086Falls and subdural hematomaTX
    73$2,325,000Pressure soresTX
    74$2,300,00076AspirationTN
    75$2,300,00074Pressure sores and infectionTX
    76$2,300,00085Pressure soresTX
    77$2,250,10051Lithium toxicity deathTX
    78$2,250,00081Pressure soresTX
    79$2,250,00080Pressure soresTX
    80$2,137,50087Pressure soresTX
    81$2,100,00091Pressure sores and dehydrationTX
    82$2,100,00089Pressure soreTX
    83$2,100,000Misplaced G-TubeTX
    84$2,000,00084Dehydration and fracturesTX
    85$2,000,00070Pressure sores and infectionKY
    86$2,000,00074Respiratory failure and UTI sepsisTX
    87$2,000,000AlivePressure sores and fallsTX
    88$2,000,00077Pressure soreTX
    89$2,000,00074Pressure soreTX
    90$2,000,00077Pressure sores and infectionTX
    91$2,000,00081DehydrationTX
    92$2,000,00082Pressure soresAL
    93$1,975,000Pressure soresTX
    94$1,950,00082Pressure sores and dehydrationTN
    95$1,900,00074DehydrationTN
    96$1,850,00058Pressure sore and sepsisTX
    97$1,850,000Renal failure and dehydrationTX
    98$1,790,00086Pressure soresWA
    99$1,700,00073Pressure sores and painTX
    100$1,650,00081Pressure sores and infectionWA
    101$1,600,00091Pressure soresTX
    102$1,500,000Pressure sores and painTX
    103$1,500,00081Anaphylactic shockTX
    104$1,500,00046Pressure soresTX
    105$1,500,00065Pressure soresNC
    106$1,500,00071Pressure sores and dehydrationTN
    107$1,500,00044Improper intubationTX
    108$1,475,00085Pressure sores and aspirationWI
    109$1,475,000Pressure soresTX
    110$1,400,00073Pressure soresTX
    111$1,350,00093Pressure sores and infectionKY
    112$1,350,00086Pressure soresWI
    113$1,300,00089Dual leg fracturesTX
    114$1,300,00091Pressure soreTX
    115$1,300,00089Pressure sores and fallsTX
    116$1,250,000Infections and painTX
    117$1,200,00066AsphyxiationTN
    118$1,200,00085DehydrationTX
    119$1,200,00073Pressure sores and dehydrationKY
    120$1,200,00079Pressure soresNC
    121$1,200,00069DehydrationTX
    122$1,200,000Pressure sores and contracturesTX
    123$1,100,00084Fall, Subdural hematomaNM
    124$1,100,00057Pressure soresAL
    125$1,100,00080Pressure soresTX
    126$1,035,00088Urosepsis and gangreneTX
    127$1,000,000Pressure soresTX
    128$1,000,00092Subdural hematomaKY
    129$1,000,00095Pressure soresKY
    130$1,000,00075Pressure soresNC
    131$1,000,00087Pressure sores and infectionWI
    132$1,000,00068Pressure sore and dehydrationKY
    133$1,000,00093Pressure soreTX
    134$1,000,00081Pressure soreTX
    135$1,000,00080Pressure soresTX
    136$1,000,00088Malnutrition and pressure soresTX
    137$1,000,00081Renal failure and sepsisTX
    138$1,000,00090Aspiration pneumonia and dehydrationIA
    139$1,000,00085Fall, UTIsOK
    140$1,000,0007218-Wheeler Intersection CollisionTX

    Case Highlights

    Record Setting Settlement Involving a Single Individual Suffering from Quadriplegia

    On August 3, 2009, the 2nd Judicial District Court of Cherokee County, Texas approved a record setting settlement totaling $23,215,206.57 for a 32 year old man who suffered paralysis when a defective air jack exploded while he was performing routine maintenance at the Styryker Creek Power Plant.

    Largest Nursing Home Corporation in US Found Guilty of Gross Neglect and Causing Resident Death

    Ruth Waites, an 83 year old dependent diabetic, was admitted to the Borger Nursing Center in June of 1993. She died on 10/29/94 suffering from a Stage 4 decubitis ulcer. It was alleged the pressure sore was due to neglect in the nursing home. They further claimed intentional fraud caused widespread injury to other similarly situated residents.

    Fourth Largest Nursing Home Chain Found Negligent in Case of Resident Death

    On April 14, 2001, Marie Frances Larson, 77, was found hanged to death in a wheelchair lap restraint at Edgewater Care Center in Kerriville. Mrs. Larson’s daughter, Patricia Marie Schieber, sued Mariner Post-Acute Network, Inc. for negligence asserting that Mrs. Larson was placed in the restraint without consent or physician’s order and was not properly monitored. The plantif was awarded $6,000,000 in this case.

    Our Other Cases

    Rape Leads to Reform

    Dorothy Cooper was a child of the Great Depression, one of eight children who went to work in the West Texas cotton fields after their father lost his railroad job. Her schooling was sporadic, her life difficult. But Ms. Cooper was a survivor. "She viewed her life as...

    Settlements and verdicts in all cases depend on various factors and circumstances which are unique to each case. Therefore, past results in cases are not a guarantee or prediction of similar results in future cases which Marks Balette Giessel & Young may undertake.

    Our Public Advocacy

    Improved Safety Measures

    Requiring Nursing Homes to Adopt

    Dorothy Cooper was a 62 year old nursing home resident who was repeatedly sexually assaulted by a nursing home employee.  She resided at Terrace West nursing home in Midland, Texas.  Because of a stroke and resulting paralysis she was wheelchair bound and dependent on staff for most of her needs.

    Texas Health Enterprises, one of the largest operators of nursing homes in Texas, operated Terrace West nursing home.  Its employee, Johnny Gordon, was a powerful, 6’2″, 200 lb male nurse aide with an extensive criminal history, having served time in the penitentiary for burglary and forgery.  Mr. Gordon also had a history of physically abusing helpless nursing home residents.  Approximately a year before being hired at Terrace West nursing home, he had been terminated from New Horizons nursing home for repeatedly abusing a helpless, wheelchair bound resident.  Terrace West and New Horizons were both owned by Texas Health Enterprises.

    Notwithstanding that its personnel director repeatedly recommended that it do so, Texas Health Enterprises kept no list of former employees who were ineligible for rehire due to abuse of a resident.  He estimated that approximately three times a month, residents in Texas Health’s facilities were harmed by employees who had been rehired after having been previously fired for abuse and neglect of residents.  Despite the known danger this practice created, the company refused to implement a registry system, citing expense as the reason.  Interestingly, the company maintained a “worker’s compensation abuse registry” which had to be checked to determine if a job applicant had filed any medical claims against the company for on-the-job injuries.

    As a consequence of Texas Health’s refusal to implement a system to prevent employment of job applicants who had been previously fired, Johnny Gordon was rehired at Terrace West.  He was given unrestricted access to female residents, including Dorothy Cooper.  As a nurse aide, Gordon’s job duties included cleaning and bathing female residents, usually without the presence of a female employee.  Over a three month period, he repeatedly sexually assaulted Dorothy Cooper.  In order to hide his predatory conduct, Gordon threatened to kill Ms. Cooper if she ever revealed his ongoing assaults.

    Sadly, sexual assaults in nursing homes occur more often than people realize.  The emotional scars that Dorothy Cooper carried with her until her death are testament to the need for more stringent hiring practices by the nursing home industry.  Her story demonstrates the unwillingness of the industry to bear any responsibility for hiring practices beyond the minimum requirements imposed by the State of Texas.  Dorothy Cooper and other nursing home residents like her need to be protected from predators that victimize vulnerable residents.

    As part of the settlement of the lawsuit brought on Dorothy Cooper’s behalf, The Marks Firm required Texas Health Enterprises to implement a system to ensure that unfit and dangerous individuals are denied access to defenseless nursing home residents.  The system was appropriately named the “Dorothy System.”

    Under the Dorothy System, Texas Health Enterprises was required to create and maintain a registry of any person who, within the past five years, was terminated for abuse or neglect of a resident in any of its facilities.  In order to create the database for the registry, Texas Health Enterprises was required to audit all personnel files at approximately 120 nursing homes for a 5 year period.  Any individual who was determined to have abused or neglected a resident had to be entered into the registry.  Thereafter, any employee who was determined to have abused or neglected a resident had to be immediately added to the registry.  No Texas Health Enterprises facility could offer employment to any person listed in the registry.  Prior to extending an offer of employment to any person in one of its facilities, the registry, maintained at central headquarters, must be checked.

    Dorothy Cooper was a victim of the man who violated her and a victim of an industry that failed to protect her.  We hope that through the required implementation of the “Dorothy System”, the tragedy that occurred in Midland Texas will never occur again.

    Read more in “Legislation and Public Policy.”

    Click for Dallas Morning News Article

    Click for Sexual Assault Report

    Legislation & Public Policy

    In an effort to extend the protections of the “Dorothy System” to all nursing home residents in the state of Texas, Marks Balette Giessel & Young worked closely with the Human Services Committee of the Texas House of Representatives, 76th Legislative Session in helping author House Bill 3386.  The bill was an outgrowth of Dorothy Cooper’s tragedy.  Marks Ballette Giessel & Young assisted in drafting legislation to correct a problem in the regulatory system that contributed to the victimization of Dorothy Cooper.

    Under House Bill 3386, the Department of Human Services will be required to check criminal histories by name and by social security number.  In addition, the Department of Human Services will maintain a registry of all known abusers of nursing home residents.  A separate registry of patient abusers has been proposed which maintains abuse and neglect histories for all health providers.  House Bill 3386 also requires that all criminal history checks be submitted in type written form to avoid any legibility questions and typographical errors.

    During the 75th Legislative session, our firm was actively involved in the passage of House Bill 413 and Senate Bill 190.  The bills were sponsored by State Representative Harvey Hilderbran, District 53, during the 75th Legislative session.  Prior to the passage of these bills, there was controversy within the judiciary regarding the admissibility of the results of nursing home investigations and surveys conducted by the Texas Department of Human Services.  Lawyers for injured residents sought to admit the results of these investigations, along with the surveys, to show the nursing home’s knowledge of dangerous conditions identified by the State in its reports.  These bills clarified the intent of the legislature to allow the results of the investigations and surveys into evidence. They also clarified the obligation of nursing homes to comply with state regulations governing the facilities.

    David Marks, our firm’s founder, has been involved in legislative efforts to correct inadequate enforcement of nursing home standards by federal and state regulators for more than 20 years.  In February 1983, he first appeared before the Senate Special Committee on Aging to testify about widespread neglect, abuse and preventable deaths in nursing homes.  He also served as a member of the National Academy of Science, Institute of Medicine, Subcommittee on Nursing Home Regulation and Enforcement.

    Testimony of David Marks: Hearing before Legislative Committee on Health and Human Services,
    August 21, 1996

    Testimony of David Marks: Hearing before Legislative Committee Human Services, April 6, 1999

    At Marks Balette Giessel & Young, our concern for public health and safety and the protection of  the most  vulnerable members of our society means being actively involved in the arenas that shape law and public policy.

    Our Lawyers Teach Other Lawyers

    Because of our reputation and expertise, our attorneys are frequently asked to address legal organizations and to serve as faculty members for continuing education programs across the country.  We have lectured in Boston, New York City, Philadelphia, Washington D.C., Lexington, Memphis, Nashville, Atlanta, Tallahassee, Orlando, St. Petersburg, Tampa, Boca Raton, Miami, Naples, New Orleans, Houston, Austin, San Antonio,  Oklahoma City, Santa Fe, Phoenix, Las Vegas, Lake Tahoe, San Francisco, San Diego, Malibu, Detroit, Chicago and Toronto.  Our lawyers have presented on college campuses, including Harvard University, The United States Military Academy at West Point, Grove City College, Catholic University, Florida State University, University of Florida, Stetson University College of Law, University of Georgia College of Law, University of Houston  College of Law, South Texas College of Law, Texas State University College of Law and Pepperdine University School of Law.

    Jacques Balette Henry Giessel have served as adjunct faculty members at law schools, teaching trial advocacy and litigation skills.  Henry taught at the University of Houston College of Law and Texas Southern University.  Jacques taught at South Texas College of Law.

    In addition to teaching lawyers and law students, our attorneys are frequently invited to teach nurses, physicians and other health professionals about the importance of complying with professional and regulatory standards designed to protect patients.  We believe it is important to share our litigation experiences with attorneys, regulators and health care providers in an effort to improve public safety and prevent neglect and abuse of patients in hospitals and nursing homes.

    Engagement with Advocacy Groups

    Marks, Balette and Giessel is a proud supporter of The National Citizen’s Coalition for Nursing Home Reform, a non-profit advocacy group dedicated to improving the care and quality of life of all nursing home residents.  Since its inception in 1973, the National Citizen’s Coalition for Nursing Home Reform has provided information and analysis on complex legal, legislative and regulatory issues surrounding long-term care issues.  They actively monitor state and federal regulatory developments by intervening on behalf of consumers, whenever necessary.  The National Citizen’s Coalition for Nursing Home Reform publishes the “Quality Care Advocate”, a bi-monthly newsletter with special reports.

    Elma Holder, the founding director of The National Citizen’s Coalition for Nursing Home Reform, has been recognized for her work as an advocate for nursing home residents.  Her motto has been protecting and empowering consumers who need long-term care not only saves the ones we love, but eventually…ourselves”.  Ms. Holder’s role has been instrumental in effectuating more stringent standards for the past three decades.

    For more information on The National Citizen’s Coalition for Nursing Home Reform, please click the image.