Happy New Year!

Happy New YearIn observance of the New Year’s holiday, our offices will be closed on Tuesday, 12/31/13 and Wednesday, 1/1/14.  All payments, fundings and other transactions received on these days will be processed promptly on Thursday, January 2.

 

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: Accounting@AdvocateCapital.com.

 

 

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

 

Kelly O’Leary, CPA, CGMA, MBA, CITP, CIA

Vice President, Finance and Administration

Share

Florida Supreme Court – Concerns About Florida’s MedMal Law

 

Florida Supreme Court questions MedMal Law, Advocate Capital, Inc. reportsThe Jacksonville (FL) Business Journal reports that Florida’s Supreme Court has indicated that it may have “questions about the constitutionality of a 2011 law that placed new requirements on out-of-state expert witnesses in medical-malpractice cases.” Plaintiff attorneys have argued that the requirements violate the separation of powers in that the legislature established standards for court witnesses, and have also argued that the new rules make it harder to find an expert to testify. The court did not rule on the constitutionality of the law but did decline to approve a procedural rule that would go along with the expert-witness law.

 

While part of the debate centers on separation of powers arguments, the Trial Lawyers Section of the Florida Bar also “thought the requirements were unconstitutional because they pose an ‘access to courts’ issue.  That is because the requirements could affect the ability of parties in malpractice cases to find expert witnesses.”

 

The full article can be read here.

Share

Advocate Capital Inc. Wins Readers’ Poll Award from Connecticut Law Tribune

CT Law Tribune Award 2013In the September “The Best of 2013” issue of the Connecticut Law Tribune, Advocate Capital, Inc. was voted the Best Provider of Goods and Services to the Legal Profession in the Case Funding category.

As stated on their website, the Connecticut Law Tribune is “Connecticut’s only weekly newspaper devoted to covering the legal community, giving the latest developments in Connecticut’s courts, law firms and legislature.” The annual Readers’ Poll allows readers to vote online for the businesses and vendors that provide the best goods and services. Vendor categories include court reports, restaurants, expert witnesses, golf courses and more. The poll is subjective and measures “the loyalty and satisfaction readers have with vendors” rather than who has the most revenue or number of customers.

We want to thank the legal community in Connecticut for your votes and ongoing support.

View “The Best of 2013” Full Digital Issue

 

Tina R. Burns

Vice President

Share

Happy Holidays!

 

Happy Holidays from Advocate Capital Inc.In observance of the holiday season, our offices will be closed on Tuesday, 12/24 and Wednesday, 12/25.  All payments, fundings and other transactions received on these days will be processed promptly on Thursday, December 26. 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: Accounting@AdvocateCapital.com.

 

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

 

Kelly O’Leary, CPA, CGMA, MBA, CITP, CIA

Vice President, Finance and Administration

 

Photo Credit: minercia via Deviant Art
Share

How to Minimize Holiday Stress

 

Copyright: <a href='http://www.123rf.com/profile_maridav'> / 123RF Stock Photo</a>We all know that this is a busy time of year for everyone!  As the days count down, stress levels continue to rise.  According to Jason Sheridan, here are 10 tips to avoid holiday stress:

 

•  Eat healthy.

 

•  Get plenty of sleep.

 

•  Limit your alcohol intake.

  • Stick to a budget.
  • Do your shopping online.
  • Plan ahead.
  • Schedule time for yourself.
  • Delegate tasks.
  • Set priorities.
  • Don’t overstress.

 

These may not all work for you, but they’re worth a try!  Click here to read the full article.

 

Kelly A. O’Leary, CPA, CGMA, MBA, CITP, CIA

Vice President, Finance and Administration

 

Photo Credit:  123RF Stock Photo
Share

The 9 Hidden Cost of Self Funding Your Case Expenses – Part 7 of 10 – Taking a Subordinate Position

 

In Part 7, Michael J. Swanson discusses how taking a subordinate position is one of the hidden costs of self-funding case expenses.  Be sure to check back for new videos as Mr. Swanson explores each of the hidden costs.

 

Share

Christian Mester and Team Secure $3.75M Verdict in Medical Negligence Case

 

Advocate Capital Inc. client Christian Mester

Congratulations to Christian C. Mester, his med mal team of Jean Jones, R.N., J.D. and Maria Dawson, R.N., J.D., and their clients on this verdict returned on November 25, 2013.

 

This case was filed in the Circuit Court for Montgomery County, Maryland by the family of a man who died of lung cancer.   The 74 year old man had a CT scan of his lung that showed a consolidation which was reported to the primary care doctor (PMD).  All the testimony and proof at trial confirmed that a consolidation is abnormal and concerning.  Also, all were in agreement that this condition can be caused by, among other things, pneumonia, scarring, tuberculosis or lung cancer.  Everyone agreed that lung cancer needed to be ruled out, everyone EXCEPT the defendant PMD, who merely assumed that it was not cancer and never repeated the CT scan within an appropriate time period.  Instead, the defendant PMD waited 20 months before he belatedly diagnosed cancer.  By that time, the lung cancer had progressed from Stage I to Stage IV and the plaintiff died 9 months later.

 

The defense focused on the fact that plaintiff did not show any signs of pneumonia, tuberculosis or cancer.  Defense counsel then argued that even if [the jury] thinks the PMD should have diagnosed the cancer 20 months earlier, too bad because the cancer was already advanced to Stage IV even in 2009.

 

In talking with jurors afterwards, the jury was not persuaded by the defense, as it stated that their main focus was on the need to follow-up on an abnormal and concerning CT Scan report, which the defendant completely ignored.  The verdict provided for non-economic damages for the decedent of $1.5M, $1M for his surviving wife and $350,000 for each of his surviving children.

 

Attorney Jones and Attorney Dawson, both of whom are registered-nurse attorneys, were instrumental in prosecuting this case on behalf of this family.  Both lawyers bring their years of nursing experience to every client of Goldberg, Finnegan & Mester, LLC, and their lawyer and nursing skills are invaluable.

 

Attorney Mester, a partner in the firm Goldberg, Finnegan & Mester, LLC, concentrates his practice exclusively to victims of catastrophic injuries in the area of medical negligence.  He is a former chair of the Medical Negligence Section of the Maryland Association for Justice and is a frequent lecturer and published author.   Christian received a preeminent 5.0/5.0 “AV Peer Review Rating” from Martindale Hubbell in Medical Malpractice.  He is also a member of both the MILLION DOLLAR ADVOCATES FORUM and the MULTI-MILLION DOLLAR ADVOCATES FORUM.

 

For detailed information regarding the numerous settlements and verdicts handled by Mr. Mester and his firm, click here or follow the firm’s achievements on Facebook here.

 

Advocate Capital, Inc. is proud to support trial lawyers like Christian Mester, Jean Jones and Maria Dawson, who protect the rights of patients by holding the medical community accountable.

 

Donna A. Jones

Senior Vice President

Share

Advocate Capital, Inc. Celebrates Long-Term Employees

 

Advocate Capital, Inc. honored several long-term employees during the Annual Company Meeting on Wednesday, Dec. 11.  Since 2013 was the first year for the ceremony, CEO Michael J. Swanson presented five-year anniversary awards and gift certificates to all employees with over 5 years of service.

 

Advocate Capital, Inc. 5 Year Honorees

Pictured above with Advocate Capital, Inc. CEO Michael J. Swanson (center), the five-year+ honorees were: Elaine Aniton, Tina Burns, Lynne Cushing, Debbie Ivey, Todd Jackson, Donna Jones, Lynn Malone, Paul Myers, Kelly O’Leary and Lisa Wagner.

 

Advocate Capital Inc. 10 year honorees

Additional engraved globe awards and gift certificates were given to Debbie Ivey, Todd Jackson and Paul Myers for achieving over 10 years of service.

 

Advocate Capital is thankful for the hard work, dedication and enthusiasm of these long-term employees throughout the years. Congratulations on your achievement and we look forward to many more years of your leadership!

 

Please visit our photo albums on Facebook and Google+ to view more photos.

Share

IRS Announces 2014 Retirement Plan Contribution Limits

 

http://www.123rf.com/profile_alexmillosRecently, the IRS released the 2014 contribution limits for various retirement-related items.  Some of the changes include:

 

 

•  The elective deferral (contribution) limit for employees who participate in 401(k), 403(b), most 457 plans, and the federal government’s Thrift Savings Plan remains unchanged at $17,500.

 

  • The catch-up contribution limit for employees aged 50 and over who participate in 401(k), 403(b), most 457 plans, and the federal government’s Thrift Savings Plan remains unchanged at $5,500.
  • The limit on annual contributions to an Individual Retirement Arrangement (IRA) remains unchanged at $5,500.  The additional catch-up contribution limit for individuals aged 50 and over is not subject to an annual cost-of-living adjustment and remains $1,000.
  • The deduction for taxpayers making contributions to a traditional IRA is phased out for singles and heads of household who are covered by a workplace retirement plan and have modified adjusted gross incomes (AGI) between $60,000 and $70,000, up from $59,000 and $69,000 in 2013.  For married couples filing jointly, in which the spouse who makes the IRA contribution is covered by a workplace retirement plan, the income phase-out range is $96,000 to $116,000, up from $95,000 to $115,000.  For an IRA contributor who is not covered by a workplace retirement plan and is married to someone who is covered, the deduction is phased out if the couple’s income is between $181,000 and $191,000, up from $178,000 and $188,000.  For a married individual filing a separate return who is covered by a workplace retirement plan, the phase-out range is not subject to an annual cost-of-living adjustment and remains $0 to $10,000.
  • The AGI phase-out range for taxpayers making contributions to a Roth IRA is $181,000 to $191,000 for married couples filing jointly, up from $178,000 to $188,000 in 2013.  For singles and heads of household, the income phase-out range is $114,000 to $129,000, up from $112,000 to $127,000.  For a married individual filing a separate return, the phase-out range is not subject to an annual cost-of-living adjustment and remains $0 to $10,000.
  • The AGI limit for the saver’s credit (also known as the retirement savings contribution credit) for low- and moderate-income workers is $60,000 for married couples filing jointly, up from $59,000 in 2013; $45,000 for heads of household, up from $44,250; and $30,000 for married individuals filing separately and for singles, up from $29,500.

 

To view the complete IRS Bulletin, click here.

 

Kelly A. O’Leary, CPA, CGMA, MBA, CITP, CIA

Vice President, Finance and Administration

 

Photo Credit: 123RF Stock Photo
Share

The 9 Hidden Costs of Self Funding Your Case Expenses – Part 6 of 10 – Increased Risk

 

In Part 6, Michael J. Swanson discusses the increased risk of self-funding your case expenses.  Be sure to check back for new videos as Mr. Swanson explores each of the hidden costs.

 

Share

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

clove panel