Advocate Capital Presents: “Law Firm Finance 101 Webinar”


Authored By: Rachel Markin


Copyright : Andriy PopovWant to make 2017 your healthiest financial year yet? Join Advocate Capital’s CEO and President Michael J. Swanson in our free “Law Firm Finance 101” webinar.


The December live event will feature tips to help you quickly understand financial basics, as well as tools to identify your firm’s challenges and how to overcome those challenges.


When you register for the webinar, you will instantly receive a free “12 Most Common Financial Mistakes” guide. We look forward to seeing you there!


Space is limited. Please reserve your spot.



A Cowboy’s Last Fight


Advocate Capital, Inc. client Scott HoyAdvocate Capital, Inc. congratulates our friend and client, Scott Hoy, and family of Ron Jensen, on their $2 million jury verdict!


Ron Jensen was a true cowboy. At 71 years young, his future was bright and he had big plans. Ron grew up riding horses and was passionate about sharing his love of horses with others. He spent the last years of his life converting the stables on his property into a cowboy church for rodeo workers. His dream for the future was to provide equestrian therapy for people with special needs. Ron was working on his “Dream Riders” project when he was tragically injured. Ron was watching a store clerk load lumber into his truck when a gust of wind blew the lumber into Ron, causing him to lose his balance and fall, striking his head on the truck’s tailgate. Ron suffered a cervical fracture resulting in quadriplegia, and he had to use a ventilator to breathe. Sadly, Ron passed away six months after the accident.


Scott Hoy of Hoy Trial Lawyers along with Co-counsel Mike Strain of Strain Morman Law Firm represented Ron in a personal injury claim against the store. Sadly, the store denied liability and claimed the wind and Ron’s past spinal injury, caused Ron to lose his balance. Mr. Hoy and Mr. Strain presented Ron’s case to the jury highlighting Ron’s accomplishments – despite his limitations from his previous spinal injury- and his plans for the future. The jury found in favor of Ron’s wife, Bonnie, and awarded her close to $2 million! The award was comprised of $1.02 million for medical expenses, $425,000 for pain and anguish, and $425,000 for catastrophic care and the change in relationship with her spouse.


Mr. Hoy said of the verdict, “You always kind of hold your breath. We felt like the jurors were in agreement with what we presented, but what happens in the jury room is something for them to decide. In the end, the strength of the story made a difference.”


For more about Ron’s life and his Dream Riders project, click here.


Advocate Capital Inc. is proud to support Plaintiff Trial Lawyers, like Scott Hoy, as they fight for justice for those injured through the negligence of others. Scott Hoy has over 30 years’ experience trying cases in state and federal courts. He is a member of various bar associations and is a graduate of the Trial Lawyers College.


Michelle D. Rigsby

Executive Client Manager


Thanksgiving Schedule


Copyright : Carl ErikssonSo that we can all spend time with our families and give thanks for our blessings, please note that Advocate Capital, Inc.’s office will be closed on Thursday, Nov. 24th and Friday, Nov. 25th.


We will return to the office on Monday, Nov. 28th.


All funding requests received before 4:00 p.m. CST on Wednesday, Nov. 23 will be processed with a Friday, Nov. 25 date.


All payment requests received by 3:00 p.m. CST on Wednesday, Nov. 23 will be processed with a Monday, Nov. 28 date.


All funding and payment requests received after the above Wednesday times and through Sunday, Nov. 27 will be processed promptly on Monday, Nov. 28.


Should you have any questions regarding the processing of any transaction, please feel free to contact our Accounting Team at 615.577.5448 or by email:


Wishing you, your families and your teams a very Happy Thanksgiving.


Paul Myers

Chief Credit Officer


Photo Credit: Carl Eriksson

Gladiators Became Grillmasters


cold-weather-cookoutIt was awesome to attend the Rocky McElhaney Law Firm Cold Weather Cookout last week! The “Gladiators in Suits” donned their aprons and grabbed spatulas. Rocky himself and attorney Justin Hight manned the grill. The team had burgers, dogs, BBQ, S’mores and more.


The pre-Thanksgiving celebration included music on the porch, sing-a-long and of course a corn hole tournament. Check out the McElhaney Gladiators:




For those of us privileged to work with the McElhaney firm, we know that they live and breathe the motto “We Fight For You” each and every day. Thus, these super attorneys are known around Nashville as the Gladiators in Suits.


While we all consider what we are thankful for this week, please remember to add trial lawyers to the list. We should all be grateful for the relentless pursuit of justice that these amazing gladiators seek every day to insure accountability and access to the courthouse for all of us.


Donna A. Jones

Senior Vice President


Advocate Capital Celebrates Early Thanksgiving


Authored By: Iris Garrett


group-blog1Thanksgiving is just around the corner. Though you may be only now starting to prepare your holiday favorites, we here at Advocate Capital, Inc. have welcomed Thanksgiving with open arms. Earlier this month, our team gave thanks with a luncheon provided by Monell’s! The meal included everything from turkey and gravy to mashed potatoes and green bean casserole and was only heightened with the addition of dessert staples: banana pudding, pecan and sweet potato pie!


Advocate Capital wants to make sure others in our community are able to enjoy a delicious Thanksgiving meal this season. We have partnered with Second Harvest Food Bank, a nonprofit in Nashville that works to feed hungry people and solve hunger issues in Middle and West Tennessee, to host a food drive over the next several weeks. We will be collecting canned meat, vegetables, fruit and other needed items here in our office, as well as virtually. If you would like to donate to our virtual drive, please click here!


turkeyUnlike other holidays, Thanksgiving is a time where we can all gather with friends and family for no other purpose than to celebrate what we already have. Whether they are tangible items we’ve collected, opportunities that have come our way, or relationships we’ve built, Thanksgiving serves as a reminder that nothing in life should be taken for granted. Our team at Advocate Capital, Inc. knows this to be true, and we are so very thankful for the daily support we receive from our employees, clients and friends. Without you, our company would not be where it is today.


Happy Thanksgiving!


Advocate Wellness: Zombie Challenge Survivors


Authored By: Tiffany Orth




As a member of the Advocate Wellness committee, I had the privilege of organizing the Zombie Walking Challenge. Starting Oct. 1, employees were given individual daily step goals (10% their previous month average) which they had to meet or exceed for 31 days straight to survive the zombies.


Below are some of the Zombie Walking Challenge statistics:


  • 32 employees participated.
  • 47% survived at least 10 days in a row.
  • 25% survived all 31 days!


milestone-prizes-blogMilestone prizes were awarded to participants who survived 10 and 20 days straight. For 10 days, survivors received a “Keep Calm and Kill Zombies” koozie and for 20 days, survivors received a deck of zombie playing cards (pictured right).


The winners, surviving 31 consecutive days, received a personalized Zombie Walk medal. I was proud to survive this challenge alongside these brave women:


Ashley Harrison
Billie Hardison
Cindy Sharp
Claire Wood
Donna Jones
Lisa Larkin
Shirley Johnson


During the award presentation, we acknowledged two survivors who went above and beyond the challenge goals:


  • Top Survivor: Shirley Johnson with 16,434 average steps per day.
  • Most Improved Survivor: Ashley Harrison who increased her average steps by 32%.


Congratulations to all the survivors and THANK YOU to everyone who signed up. Your participation helped make the challenge fun and successful!


Shout out to the Advocate Wellness committee chair Jeff Glueck and my fellow members, Billie Hardison and Michelle Rigsby, for all your support and enthusiasm.


Stay tuned for our next walking challenge starting Dec. 1!


How Long Will My Personal Injury Case Last?


In Mr. Swanson’s latest interview, Attorneys Bob and Brad Simon of The Simon Law Group share some of the factors that determine how long it will take to prosecute your personal injury case to conclusion.



Tina Burns

Vice President


Ways to Minimize Your 2016 Tax Liability


Copyright : lucadpThe IRS stands firm on the ruling that client case costs are considered a receivable for accounting and tax purposes and are not a tax deductible expense. However, the Advocate Capital, Inc. Case Expense Funding product provides a solution to help contingent fee lawyers to minimize their annual tax liability.


As we quickly approach year-end, Advocate Capital, Inc. clients may choose to fund client case costs, using the proceeds generated from the funding request to make tax deductible payments before year-end, minimizing the Firm’s current year tax liability.


Below are just a few examples of potential tax deductible expenditures a firm can make using the cash they have access to by funding their client case costs before year end:


  1. Year End Bonuses
  2. Charitable Contributions
  3. Maximize 2017 Retirement Account Contributions (Click for 2017 limits)
  4. State & Local Tax Payments (including Property Taxes)
  5. Unpaid Medical Bills
  6. Purchases for certain Section 179 Property (Maximum section 179 deduction for 2017 is $500,000)


Make the time to ask your tax adviser about other tax deductible expenditures you can make before year end to minimize your individual 2016 tax liability. The dollars you save may be your own!


The Advocate Capital, Inc. Case Expense Funding product provides countless strategic financial solutions for Plaintiff Lawyers; minimizing the annual tax liability, is just one of many solutions. To learn more about how the Case Expense Funding product can benefit your clients and your practice, contact your Account Manager or click here for contact information.


Important: Advocate Capital, Inc. and it’s staff do not provide tax, legal or accounting advice. This blog has been prepared for informational purposes only, and is not intended to provide, and should not be relied on for, tax, legal or accounting advice. You should consult your own tax, legal and accounting advisers before taking any action.


Michael J. Swanson

President and CEO


Photo Credit: lucadp


Yelp for Law Firms


Authored By: Tiffany Orth


Yelp for Law FirmsWhether you are looking for a dentist or searching for a new restaurant to try, you probably have used Yelp reviews to help make your decision. With an estimated 72 million unique visitors and over 115 million reviews, Yelp is becoming one to the top sources for consumers. Just this year, Google launched an update which highlights local reviews that includes Yelp reviews displayed on search results.


So, what does this mean for your law firm?


In a recent article, Gyi Tsakalakis of shares how this popular review source may “play a role in the initial impressions formed by potential clients.” Below are a few of his tips to monitor and manage your law firm listing:


  • Claim Your Law Firm’s Page: “Be particularly careful to list your name (firm name), address, and local phone number. The consistency of these is critical to ranking in local search results. If your firm has multiple office locations, be sure to claim each additional location page.”
  • Yelp Business Owners Dashboard: Yelp business dashboard is “one way to measure the impact your Yelp listing is having on your client development efforts.” This dashboard will allows you to see user views, activity feed and customer leads. You can also track your referral traffic from Yelp in Google Analytics.
  • Review Yelp Guidelines: “Yelp has a variety of guidelines for contributing content. Perhaps most notably, Yelp strongly discourages businesses from soliciting Yelp reviews. However you may feel about this policy, you shouldn’t publicly request reviews for your Yelp page. If you do, you put yourself at risk of Yelp taking action on your page, including filtering your reviews.”


(Read the full article, “Yelp for Lawyers”)


“For better and worse, Yelp is likely to play some role in how potential clients form an opinion about you and your practice,” says Tsakalakis. Being proactive and monitoring your law firm listing will help prospective clients get the best first impression.


Photo Credit: dennizn

Reflecting on Veterans Day


Authored By: Iris Garrett


Copyright : Aleksandrs BondarsVeterans Day means different things to different people. For some, the day symbolizes the end of a bitter World War filled with service and sacrifice; but to others, it is a day to reflect, celebrate, and pay tribute to not only the fighters of WWI, but to all American veterans, living or dead, for their patriotism both during battle and peace.


Veterans Day began back in 1919, a year after the end of the First World War. It was originally dubbed “Armistice Day” in light of the temporary cease in hostilities that took place between Germany and the Allied Nations in 1918 on the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month. However, it wasn’t until several years later that November 11th became a national holiday that is observed regardless of what day of the week it falls on.


Advocate Capital, Inc. is thankful to all of America’s veterans for their willingness to serve our country for the greater good. These brave men and women have protected the freedoms and rights we hold dear, and we hope that you will join us in celebrating them not just on Veterans Day, but every day of the year.


Here are a few facts about the current U.S. veteran population as listed on


  • 1 million living veterans served during at least one war.
  • 2 million veterans served in peacetime.
  • 2 million veterans are women.
  • 7 million veterans served during the Vietnam War era (1964-1975).
  • 5 million veterans served during the Gulf War (representing service from Aug. 2, 1990, to present).
  • Of the 16 million Americans who served during World War II (1941-1945), about 620,000 are still alive.
  • 2 million veterans served during the Korean War (1950-1953).
  • 6 million veterans served in peacetime.
  • As of 2014, 2.9 million veterans received compensation for service-connected disabilities.
  • As of 2014, 3 states have more than 1 million veterans in among their population: California (1.8 million), Florida (1.6 million), Texas (1.7 million).
  • The VA health care system had 54 hospitals in 1930, since then it has expanded to include 171 medical centers; more than 350 outpatient, community, and outreach clinics; 126 nursing home care units; and 35 live-in care facilities for injured or disabled vets.


Photo Credit: Aleksandrs Bondars

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