2 recent opinions state basic principles about stare decisis in Texas:

  • The Texas Supreme Court expressly adopted the “rule of orderliness” concept in Mitschke v. Faiva, No. 21-0326 (May 13, 2022), observing: “If one appellate panel decides a case, and another panel of the same court differently resolves a materially indistinguishable question in contravention of a holding in the prior decision, the second panel has violated the foundational rule of stare decisis. Affording stare decisis authority to the second case would be tantamount to eliminating stare decisis altogether, as nothing would stop a third panel from returning to the initial outcome, or going yet another way.”
  • A recent concurrence by Justice Schenck reminded: “I will … simply note that under the doctrine of stare decisis courts are bound only by the holding and discussion necessary to the resolution of the case. Newman v. Minyard Food Stores, Inc., 601 S.W.2d 754, 756 (Tex. App.—Dallas 1980, writ ref’d n.r.e.).”

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