Lance Sears – Part Four – Tort Reform Hurts the Elderly


Click on the video to watch part four of Mr. Swanson’s recent interview with Lance Sears of Sears & Swanson, P.C. in Colorado Springs, Colorado, as he talks about the effect of tort reform  on the elderly.



Chalik Firm Battles for Regulation of Tourist Death Trap



heartAdvocate Capital, Inc. friend and colleague, Jason Chalik, whose firm Chalik & Chalik has multiple offices in South Florida is working diligently to foster legislation to regulate the parasailing industry.  Most tourists don’t even realize the danger of this vacation activity and place their confidence in companies with little or no safety training.



In 2007, Amber May White age 15 was killed during a parasailing accident in Pompano Beach.  Mr. Chalik and his firm joined the efforts of her family in pursuing changes to the laws (or lack thereof) with this petition to the Florida legislature.  To join their efforts, please visit their “Amber May Law” website.

Mr. Chalik, and his wife, Debi Chalik, provide representation in all areas of personal injury on behalf of the citizens of Florida.  Their motto “Let our family fight for your family” is evidenced is in every aspect of the firm including the outstanding results they have achieved for their clients.  Click here to review a sampling of their success stories.


Advocate Capital, Inc. is proud to support the efforts of trial lawyers like Jason and Debi Chalik who not only work hard to represent injured persons but lobby for changes in the law to make the world a safer place for all of us.


Donna A. Jones

Senior Vice President


Labor Day Schedule


labor-day_webIn observance of the Labor Day holiday, our offices will be closed on Monday, September 2nd.  All payments, fundings and other transactions received on this day will be processed promptly on Tuesday, September 3rd. Should you have any questions regarding the processing of any transaction, please feel free to contact our Accounting Team at 1-615-577-5448 or by email to this address:


Thank you for being our valued customer. The entire ACI Team wishes a safe holiday to all of our customers, staff and their families.


Kelly O’Leary, CPA, CGMA, MBA, CITP

Vice President, Finance and Administration


Supreme Court Victory for John Steward & The Meyerkord Firm


stewartMeyerkord & Meyerkord extends hearty congratulations to John Steward on this fantastic ruling from the Missouri Supreme Court in the case of Columbia Casualty Company v. HIAR Holding LLC and HMA Riverport LLC, and Karen S. Little LLC.  To review the ruling in its entirety, click here.


In the original action, HIAR Holding LLC, a hotel proprietor insured by Columbia Casualty, settled a class action lawsuit that alleged HIAR violated the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) when they sent unsolicited advertisements.   The trial court in St. Louis County ruled that Columbia Casualty owed HIAR a duty to defend and that the insurance company acted in bad faith when it refused to defend. The court further ruled that Columbia Casualty held an obligation to indemnify parties in the class action for the full settlement amount plus interest.


Following the judgment, Columbia Casualty appealed but the trial court’s decision was upheld.  The affirmation of the circuit court’s ruling reiterates the ideal that insurance companies have a legal duty to act in good faith when processing their clients’ claims, defending their policy holders, and remunerating legitimate claims.  The case has received significant media coverage including press releases on PRLOG and FindLaw.


Mr. Steward is of counsel with the Meyerkord Firm. His vast experience in consumer and privacy protection cases was no doubt a key factor in this tremendous victory for both the client and the firm.


Advocate Capital, Inc. applauds this outstanding judgment and appellate affirmation that once again should remind the insurance industry of its good faith responsibilities to its customers.


Donna A. Jones

Senior Vice President


What Amazing Leaders Do Differently


Copyright: <a href=''> / 123RF Stock Photo</a>In a world focused on productivity, we often measure success by our professional accolades and financial status. Although these accomplishments improve your resume and quality of life, do they make you a great leader? An article from journalist Shane Snow describes seven patterns observed in amazing leaders. A few from that list are:


1.  They change their minds. – One of the most courageous things a leader can do is admit when he or she is wrong, and admit it often.
2.  They absorb shock. – They absorb risk unto themselves, so others can do their best work.
3.  They over communicate. – The best leaders confide in their followers. Whereas they shield people from danger, they also aren’t afraid to trust people with all the information.
4.  They think before answering. – The best leaders take the time to pause, make eye contact and give people their full attention even when they are incredibly busy.


These are just a few patterns listed in the article – to read all seven click here.



Photo Credit: 123RF Stock Photo

Federal Budget Cuts Continue to Impact Court System


houston-courthouseI have already blogged a couple of times about the impact that the sequestration/federal budget cuts are having on the court system.  The cuts are now starting to impact public defenders and probation services according to many published reports.  USA Today reports that, “The federal judiciary for the first time is cutting the fees of court appointed defense lawyers, including those representing death penalty defendants, to deal with the ‘dire consequences’ of required government budget reductions known as sequestration.”


The New York Times had reported on this issue a few weeks ago, lamenting the fact that only 3 Democrats and 1 Republican showed up to a Senate Judiciary Subcommittee hearing to “examine the wreckage”.   Michael Nachmanoff, who heads the federal defender office for the Eastern District of Virginia, warned that absent relief from Congress, even more severe budget buts forecast for the next fiscal year will force federal defender offices to terminate “as many as one-third to one-half of their employees”.


The article in the Times closes with the following question, which I think is a good one – “What will it take to get lawmakers to stop treating the courts – an independent branch of government created by the Constitution – as an unaffordable frill?”


The USA Today article can be read here.


The New York Times article can be read here.


Photo Credit: accent on eclectic via Flickr

Ken Shigley – Part 4 – Community Involvement


Click on the video to watch part four of Mr. Swanson’s recent interview with Ken Shigley, former President of The Georgia State Bar, as he talks about community involvement.  Mr. Shigley is currently practicing in Atlanta, Georgia.



Susan Saladoff’s Next Film – The Oliver Diaz Story


Oliver&Jenoutsidecourthouse copy

There is another great film project in the works by renowned producer and 7th amendment champion Susan Saladoff.  Fresh off of her great success with Hot Coffee the Movie, Susan is already working hard on her next film, The Oliver Diaz Story.


I recently chatted with Susan in San Francisco and she explained to me how she is presently raising funds to get the film started.  We can all help Susan get this feature length film made by making a tax-deductible donation to help get the project started.


Anyone who cares about large corporations corrupting our justice system should make a contribution to this project.  Wouldn’t you like to be able to say you had a role in getting Hot Coffee the Movie produced?  Here’s your chance to participate in the next great film from Susan.  I encourage you to make your donation today.  I did!


To donate, click here and at the bottom of that page click on the “Make a secure online donation” link.


Michael J. Swanson

President and Chief Executive Officer


Steve Glickman Concludes Confidential Medical Malpractice Settlement in Unbelievable Case


Congratsteveulations to Steve, the Glickman Firm and their client on the outstanding resolution of this mindboggling medical negligence case.


Plaintiff was suffering from low back problems and was recommended for an XLIF (eXtreme Lateral Interbody Fusion) procedure whereby the spine is approached from the side of the body as opposed to a “midline” incision.  The physician gave the plaintiff a detailed explanation, a brochure on the XLIF procedure and even showed him the device that would be implanted.  On the date of surgery, plaintiff signed a consent form for this procedure ONLY.  However, the physician performed a substantially different procedure.  Instead of using the implant that was demonstrated, the surgeon used a “soft bag” implant called the “OptiMesh” bag which is NOT approved by the US Federal Drug Administration.  Not only was the OptiMesh bag not approved but the FDA required a black box warning (strongest required) that the device/procedure carried significant risks and even life-threatening adverse effects.  In addition to not using the implant represented to plaintiff and for which he consented, the physician also deviated from the surgical plan by making a midline incision in plaintiff’s spine in addition to the side-entry incision.


Almost immediately, plaintiff reported that the surgery did not go well and he was still in a lot of pain.  As a result of this physician’s negligence, the plaintiff now requires a total facetectomy at the L3-L4 area.  He basically has no stability in his spine but this recommended surgical procedure is extremely risky and could result in paralysis.  Further, the plaintiff has also now developed complex regional pain syndrome, is completely unable to work and requires assistance for many activities of daily living.


Discovery in the case revealed that there were many concerns about this physician’s practice early in his tenure with the hospital.   In fact, before the client’s surgery, there were at least nineteen patients who were injured by the surgeon and who subsequently filed actions against the surgeon; this information was known or reasonably available to the hospital.


Glickman & Glickman specialize in civil litigation representing plaintiffs in substantial personal injury and wrongful death cases, employment and business litigation.  This medical malpractice case is one of many handled by Steve Glickman.  Mr. Glickman will be installed as President of the California Chapter of the prestigious American Board of Trial Advocates (ABOTA) for 2014. He has also served in many leadership roles including an officer for the Board of Governors of the Consumer Attorneys Association of Los Angeles (CAALA) and served as president in 2006.


All of us here at Advocate Capital, Inc. are so thankful there are trial lawyers like Steve Glickman holding medical providers accountable for this kind of gross negligence.


Donna A. Jones

Senior Vice President



CAALA Las Vegas Convention


CAALA 2013

Will you be attending CAALA’s Las Vegas annual convention on August 29 – September 1, 2013?


Donna Jones and Michael J. Swanson will be representing Advocate Capital, Inc. at booth #322. Stop by and discover how our case expense funding product can make a difference for your clients.


CAALA’s Annual Las Vegas Convention is the largest convention of plaintiff trial attorneys in the nation. It features three days of educational sessions presented by the nation’s most accomplished trial lawyers, jurists and legal consultants. The convention is an excellent opportunity to network with 2,000 attendees and over 100 legal service exhibitors all in one location. Plus attorneys can earn up to 20 hours of MCLE credit during one exciting weekend in Las Vegas!


Don’t forget to enter our raffle for a change to win a Mini iPad!


We hope to see you there.


Case Expense Financing at a Net Cost of Less Than 1%*

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