Attorney Tessa King Named 2014 Rising Star by Super Lawyers


Advocate Capital Inc. client Tessa KingCongratulations to Tessa King, of Reisner & King LLP, for her recent selection as a 2014 Rising Star by Super Lawyers®.


Super Lawyers® rates lawyers from more than 70 practice areas through an extensive selection process including peer nomination, evaluations and third party research. The Rising Stars list recognizes the top up-and-coming attorneys under 40 years of age who have practiced 10 years or more. Super Lawyers® website states that “while up to 5 percent of the lawyers in a state are named to Super Lawyers, no more than 2.5 percent are named to Rising Stars.”


Ms. King is a firm partner at Reisner & King, LLP, and practices employment and personal injury law. Her experience includes representing clients in cases involving wage, break, and overtime violations, and has developed niche expertise in the area of pregnancy discrimination and matters involving pregnancy disability leave (PDL). Ms. King and the team at Reisner & King, LLP, are dedicated to achieving optimal results based on their clients’ needs and goals. Learn more about Reisner & King, LLP, visit their website at


Congratulations again from your friends at Advocate Capital, Inc.!


Tina Burns

Vice President


Massachusetts Jury Sends Message with $14M+ Verdict


Massachusetts jury awards $14M in nursing home neglect case, Advocate Capital Inc. reportsOn July 21, 2014, a Middlesex County jury awarded $1.425 million in compensatory damages and $12.5 million in punitive damages to the family of an elderly woman against the nursing home that neglected her for weeks and ultimately caused her death.  The verdict, with statutory interest, is the largest verdict against a nursing home ever reported in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.  The plaintiffs’ team included David Hoey, Kris Sobczak and Bernard Hamill.


While at the nursing home, the plaintiff suffered a fall from her wheelchair and was admitted to the hospital. At the hospital, she was diagnosed with acute renal failure, appendicitis, bed ulcers, fecal impaction, hyperglycemia, urinary tract infection, sepsis, and multiple infections.  Despite the extensive injuries suffered by the plaintiff the nursing home admitted to only “select” breaches of the applicable standard of care a month before trial, but denied negligence in causing the plaintiff any harm. The jury felt otherwise and after several hours of deliberations returned the historical verdict.


David Hoey said of the verdict, “The jury’s verdict reinforces the principle that age doesn’t matter; any and everyone is entitled to the same proper level of care, safety and protections, regardless whether they are young or old.” This historic verdict has received a great deal of media attention and a complete recap can be here.


Our seniors deserve the utmost respect and the best possible medical care available when needed.  It is gratifying to all of us here at Advocate Capital, Inc. to know that attorneys like David Hoey and Bernard Hamill, gladly accept the fight for justice for people of all ages. Congratulations to the attorneys David Hoey, Kris Sobczak, and Bernard Hamill!


Donna A. Jones

Senior Vice President


Strickland Settles Wrongful Death Case Against Trucking Company


Advocate Capital Inc. client Michael StricklandCongratulations to Michael Strickland, the entire team at Strickland & Kendall, L.L.C., and their clients on this recent outstanding settlement of $1.9M in a conservative venue where the largest known verdict was $700,000 for an MVA case.


The plaintiffs, a niece and her uncle, were seriously injured when the defendant driver ran a stop sign and slammed into the plaintiffs’ car.  Unfortunately, the uncle who was a belted passenger later died from a blunt force trauma sustained in the accident.   The niece was placed on life support and was not expected to survive after suffering broken bones, internal organ damage, and a collapsed lung.  The niece did survive but has been unable to return to work due to the permanent injuries sustained in the accident.


Initially, both the defendant driver who was within the course and scope of his employment, and the defendant’s employer denied liability and claimed the Plaintiffs’ automobile did not have its headlights in operation as the wreck occurred at nighttime.  The defense further claimed that the uncle died as a result of medical negligence by the hospital and not the blunt force trauma sustained in the accident.  Because of the excellent work done by Michael Strickland and his team, the defendants were unable to support their theory during discovery and ultimately agreed to settle the case.


Strickland & Kendall are located in Montgomery, Alabama and handle all types of personal injury and wrongful death cases.  A particular practice area of interest is the firm’s emphasis in disaster claims resulting from tornadoes, hurricanes and other natural disasters.   Click here to learn more.


Advocate Capital, Inc. is proud to partner with attorneys like Strickland & Kendall, who fight for justice for those impacted by negligence of others.


Donna A. Jones

Senior Vice President


Missouri High Court Rules Against Caps for Some Punitive Damages


photo credit: david_shane

In a recent article, the Kansas City Star reports that the Missouri Supreme Court “brushed by the legislature’s limits on punitive damages this week, saying they don’t apply to a $1 million verdict a jury awarded to an Excelsior Springs woman.”  Lillian M. Lewellen “received the judgment in 2012 after she was defrauded by car dealer Chad Franklin.”  Lewellen had purchased a used Lincoln Town Car “after being told she would have to make payments of only $49 a month,” but “after several months, she learned she would have to pay $387 a month.”  After a Clay County jury ordered Franklin to pay Lewellen $1 million in punitive damages, “a judge cut the judgment in half, citing a state law that capped some punitive damage awards at $500,000.”  The Supreme Court “restored the judgment because Lewellen had filed her claim as a common law fraud, which has existed in Missouri since the first state constitution was written.”


Although the opinion is limited in striking down caps on punitive damages, it is gratifying to see some movement in that direction.


The full article can be read here.


A summary of the opinion can be read here, and the full opinion is here.


Photo Credit: david_shane via WikiCommons

Reisner & King Awarded Attorneys’ Fees, Increasing Verdict to $1.2 Million


Adam ReisnerAdvocate Capital, Inc. clients Reisner & King, LLP and Tessa King persevered for their client last August with a 13-day trial and a jury verdict of $610,000. However, Judge Timothy L. Fall was not finished with the defendant and recently awarded attorneys’ fees of $659,131.37 to Reisner & King, increasing the total award to $1.2 million!


I previously blogged about this impressive jury trial verdict against the plaintiff’s former employer in Yolo County, California for workplace discrimination here.


Reisner & King’s experience, professionalism and courage allows them to provide the highest level of care and representation for the residents of Los Angeles and surrounding counties in the practice areas of employment law, personal injury and business litigation.


Congratulations Adam and Tessa!


Advocate Capital, Inc. is proud to stand behind plaintiffs’ attorneys, like Reisner & King, for the last 15 years, providing support and capital resources, needed to obtain justice and prevail in the face of discrimination.


Tina Burns

Vice President.


American Association for Justice – Distinguished Service Award


Advocate Capital, Inc. client Tim BaileyPlease join us in congratulating, Tim Bailey, on being honored by American Association for Justice with the Distinguished Service Award.


According to AAJ, “The Distinguished Service Award recognizes members of the AAJ Board of Governors who during the past year have been of special assistance to the President of the Association.  Recipients are honored for going above and beyond their commitment to the principles of the civil justice system and AAJ’s mission.  Through their leadership, these recipients were critical in membership recruitment, fundraising and issue advocacy.”


Tim Bailey has served on AAJ’s Board of Governors since August, 2011.  Attorney Bailey, along with his Partners at Bucci, Bailey & Javins, L.C., fight tirelessly for the rights of workers and consumers throughout West Virginia and all across the U.S.   No fight is too big or too far away for this Firm when it comes to preserving the rights of consumers and workers.    As a descendant of three generations of coal miners Attorney Bailey’s passion for the dignity and safety of workers runs deep.


At Advocate Capital, Inc., we’re honored to support committed, passionate Trial Lawyers like Tim Bailey and Bucci, Bailey & Javins, L.C., who dedicate their careers to protecting and advocating for consumers and workers and go the distance- the extra mile to ensure the civil justice system endures for us all.


Lisa Wagner

Senior Vice President, Client Services


Ron Netemeyer Obtains $1.25 Million Settlement for Client


Advocate Capital Inc. client Ron NetemeyerCongratulations to Ron Netemeyer, the entire team at Harper, Evans, Wade & Netemeyer and their client, who recently obtained a settlement through mediation of $1.25 Million.


The Defendant, who was driving drunk, turned immediately in front of the Plaintiff, causing a collision. The Plaintiff suffered a stroke, numerous fractures, (including a neck fracture), a dislocated right knee, a lesion on her liver, stomach bleeding, severe back pain and jaw problems. She was initially hospitalized for one month, before having to return for additional surgeries.


The Defendant was driving his father’s vehicle at the time of the crash and the owner had moved to Mexico. Mr. Netemeyer moved quickly to file a suit against both father and son in Missouri. The Defendants had the case removed to federal court due to diversity of jurisdiction, following the Defendant’s move to Mexico. The federal judge ordered the parties to mediate the case. The case was settled at the mediation for policy limits on 2 insurance policies held by the father.


Ron Netemeyer is a partner in the firm of Harper, Evans, Wade & Netemeyer based in Columbia, Missouri. Mr. Netemeyer handles product liability cases, railroad crossing accidents, automotive negligence, tractor-trailer accidents, nursing home litigation and medical malpractice matters for his clients. He is a member of the Missouri Association of Trial Attorneys and the American Association of Trial Attorneys. He has been practicing law since 1998.  To learn more about the outstanding work done by the firm, click here.


Congratulations to Ron Netemeyer and the entire team at Harper, Evans, Wade & Netemeyer on this outstanding result for your client. We at Advocate Capital, Inc. are proud to support trial attorneys as they fight for justice on behalf of their clients.


Donna A. Jones

Senior Vice President


Protecting Children & Sending Message in Day Care Abuse Case


Attorney Rasansky files suit against daycare center, Advocate Capital Inc. reportsDallas Attorney Jeff Rasansky is representing the parents in a case alleging that a North Texas daycare center, Heart2Heart Day Montessori Academy in Willow Park, TX, intentionally withheld water from children in order to minimize the number of diaper changes and used duct tape to restrain children.  Luckily, a daycare worker, appalled by the behavior, took appropriate action by taking photos, reporting the abuse and resigning.


Attorney Rasansky points out in a recent news story, “…it’s about sending a message to daycare centers that this type of conduct-this behavior will not be tolerated…”


Click the video below for more on this story:



Thanks to Jeff Rasansky for helping ensure the safety of defenseless children by sending the message that this type of behavior will not be tolerated and for holding this day care accountable.


Lisa Wagner

Senior Vice President, Client Services


1st Annual Pirate Day Luncheon


Advocate Capital Inc. pirate day lunch

Aaarrrggh Mateys!


To celebrate National (Talk Like) Pirate Day, the Advocate Capital, Inc. team enjoyed our first annual festivity on September 17.  We began with a pirate costume contest and had great participants from all departments.  All employees voted and the Best Costume honors went to Matt Sturdivant.


We enjoyed a traditional buccaneer lunch of fish and chips courtesy of Uncle Bud’s.  The team was then treated to fabulous desserts from Sweet 16th Bakery here in Nashville.


The highlight of the day was the Treasure/Scavenger Hunt.  All “hands on deck” was the theme as everyone began the hunt for 26 different items – – one for each letter of the alphabet.  The search continued feverishly inside, outside and all around!  The winner crowned was Buffy Escue who gathered all 26 items in just over 12 minutes.


Thanks to all who participated in their pirate costumes and hunted like scavengers.  Special thanks to the quality assurance team for planning and hosting the event.


Please visit our photo albums on Facebook and Google+ and feel free to tag any of the ACI team you recognize.


Donna A. Jones

Senior Vice President


IRS Telephone Scam Continues


IRS warns telephone scam, Advocate Capital Inc. reportsRecently, the IRS informed taxpayers that a phone scam continues throughout the country.



The IRS published five easy ways to spot suspicious calls:




  • Call you about taxes you owe without first mailing you an official notice.
  • Demand that you pay taxes without giving you the opportunity to question or appeal the amount they say you owe.
  • Require you to use a specific payment method for your taxes, such as a prepaid debit card.
  • Ask for credit or debit card numbers over the phone.
  • Threaten to bring in local police or other law-enforcement groups to have you arrested for not paying.


The IRS’ article also provides tips on what to do should you receive one of these phone calls.  To read the entire publication, please click here.


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

Vice President, Finance and Administration


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