City of Beverly Hills v. Guevara

In City of Beverly Hills v. Guevara, 904 S.W.2d 655 (Tex. 1995), the Supreme Court permitted a governmental entity to appeal under section 51.014(a)(5) of the Texas Civil Practice and Remedies Code, the denial of a summary judgment motion grounded on official immunity when the alleged tortfeasor, a police officer, was not sued in his individual capacity. Id. at 656. The court of appeals had dismissed the appeal for lack of jurisdiction, reasoning that because the governmental entity could not rely on the employee's official immunity, an appeal brought pursuant to section 51.014(a)(5) did not confer appellate jurisdiction over the interlocutory order. Id. Reversing the court of appeals, the Supreme Court ruled as follows: Section 51.014(a)(5) authorizes interlocutory appeals for claims 'based on an assertion of immunity by an individual. . . .' The City's motion for summary judgment was clearly 'based on' official immunity within the meaning of section 51.014(a)(5). Whether the claim of official immunity was valid should have been decided on the merits. Id.