Coping With Anxious Thoughts as a Lawyer


Authored By: Candace Whitman


Stressed manEvery profession has stress that comes along with it and the law profession is no exception.  Unpredictable cases, heavy workloads, and other stressors can all lead to high anxiety levels for lawyers.


An article by Jeena Cho, a Legal Mindfulness Strategist, provides a few ways to deal with “anxious lawyer brain.”


One way to cope with your anxiety is to pay attention to the way you’re feeling. Instead of pushing away your anxiety and ignoring it, take time to acknowledge your anxiety and what is causing it.


When you have feelings of self-doubt, do not let those thoughts become destructive. According to Jeena Cho, with time and practice, you can learn to utilize the process of metacognition to observe your thoughts and realize your anxious thoughts are just thoughts and not always facts.


Another way to deal with anxiety is to create and stick to a regular exercise routine.  Even regularly carving out a small section of your day to exercise can improve your mental health.


To read the full article from, click here



Photo Credit: Elliot Burlingham

A Company Core Value, Continuous Improvement


Here at Advocate Capital, Inc. we believe in five core values: Professionalism, Integrity, Continuous Improvement, Teamwork and Service.  There is no greater example of Continuous Improvement than our propriety software, AdvoTrac ®. AdvoTrac® is our system that tracks interest on a case-by-case basis.  We listen to our clients and employees about ways we can improve AdvoTrac®.


Here are the Summer 2017  AdvoTrac® improvements:


Online Payments – Our clients can now choose which confirmation report(s) to run after a payment is processed. The confirmation report options are print detail, print summary, print receipt, and print all.


Case Balances Screen – Principal Balance Only, Unpaid Finance Charges and Borrowing Cost columns were added to the Case Balances Screen. This information is now also visible when exporting the screen data into PDF or Excel files.


Reports – A Reopened Cases Report has been added as a new option on the Reports tab.


Payoff Quotes – The total amount due and payable to Advocate Capital, Inc. has been added to the top of the first page of the payoff quote so clients can easily see the grand total without scrolling to the end of a long, multi-case payoff.


Case Payoffs – Our clients can now upload an Excel file containing a list of cases for payoff.  AdvoTrac® then automatically locates each case and pays it off electronically.


We want to hear from you!  If you have ideas for additional improvements, contact the Accounting department at or 615.577.5448 to share your suggestions.



Tina Burns


Vice President


How to Market to Millennial Legal Consumers



Authored By: Iris Garrett


Millennials on smartphoneIf you think you can reach millennial legal consumers using the same methods as those applied to Baby Boomers and Generation X, you may be in for some bad news. According to an article on FindLaw, the distinctions between today’s millennial generation and most other age groups couldn’t be more stark, especially when it comes to how they search for an attorney. Where Gen X reached for the phone book and land line when they needed legal help, young people now reach for their lifeline: a smartphone. If you can’t tailor your digital marketing efforts accordingly, you may want to forget reaching anyone under the age of 36.


FindLaw says today’s generation makes their legal decisions differently because they were raised on the internet. They adopted quickly to social media, started reading blogs at a young age, and prefer texts over phone calls no matter the time of day. Because of this, traditional marketing approaches do not appeal or attract this age group, but fortunately a few tech-savvy approaches may do the trick.


FindLaw says today’s generation trusts blogs to do their legal research at twice the rate as the average legal consumer. By maintaining a law firm blog, not only will you be reaching millennials, but it will give you a platform to demonstrate your expertise and give introductory advice. FindLaw also suggests using your social media presence to target millennials. It says more than 40 percent of young people find tweets and Facebooks posts from attorneys to be important. It also says they like when attorneys post candid photos of volunteering events or office outings because it allows them to see your firm in a more personal way (rather than just as a faceless logo).


FindLaw says the things that many law firms undervalue or ignore are what millennials are looking for. The good news is that you can easily change this by connecting with these potential clients in the same way they want to connect with you.


To read the full article, click here.



Photo Credit: marctran

Attorney Fee Deferrals



Wallet with money.I often coach plaintiff lawyers on financial topics during my webinars and in-person presentations.  One of my favorite bits of advice is for the partners at contingent-fee law firms to pay themselves sufficiently in order to build net worth outside of their law firm.  There are far too many dedicated, hard-working and brilliant trial lawyers who, frankly, are broke.


One of the tactics I have seen many lawyers use to help build net worth, smooth-out income and manage tax liabilities is to structure legal fees over time.  My friend, John Bair, is very knowledgeable on this topic.  Click here to learn more from John.


Michael J. Swanson

President and Chief Executive Officer



Photo Credit: novintito

Historic Eclipse in Nashville


Authored By: Rachel Markin


Employees looking at eclipse with glasses.For the first time in nearly 100 years, a total solar eclipse was visible in the United States. This rare event garnered thousands of spectators from across the globe who wanted to experience the once in a lifetime celestial occurrence.


Nashville, also home of Advocate Capital, Inc.’s headquarters, was the largest U.S. city in the eclipse’s path! The eclipse was also visible in other areas, but the event could only be experienced on a relatively small strip on the Earth’s surface.


Our Advocate Capital, Inc. team has been looking forward to the spectacular event. Thanks to the planning of Mary K. Berst, our Vice President of Operations and Accounting, everyone was able to fully enjoy the eclipse.


The partial eclipse began around 11:58 am in Nashville. Around 1:00 pm many members of our team excitedly gathered outside our offices to watch the changing sky. Each team member had NASA approved viewing glasses.


Credit Compliance Manager, David Alford brought in his telescope and hooked it up with his phone to record excellent photos and videos of the event.



At 1:27 the Nashville scenery began to change, the sky darkened, streetlights came on and insects piped up. Some team members described the drastic change to sunset as “eerie”.


The crowd outside our offices cheered during the total eclipse, which lasted for roughly 2 minutes. Advocate Capital, Inc. was fortunate to be located in an area where the viewing was not covered by clouds (not everyone was that fortunate!).


Click here to view David Alford’s spectacular photos and video.


Special thanks to Mary K. Berst and David Alford for their work to make the historic day special for Advocate Capital, Inc. team members.


The CAALA Vegas 2017 Convention is Coming Up!


Authored By: Iris Garrett


CAALA LogoAre you headed out west next week for the Consumer Attorneys Association of Los Angeles 35th Annual Las Vegas Convention? The event is taking place Labor Day weekend (August 31st-September 3rd) at the Wynn|Encore Las Vegas Resort. It is expected to be the “largest convention of trial attorneys in the nation” with more than 2,800 attendees and 140+ exhibitors, including Advocate Capital, Inc.!


In addition to the large attendance and exhibition area, the CAALA Vegas convention will feature several networking events, as well as 20 hours of MCLE credit courses presented by top trial lawyers, experts, and jurists. If you’ll be attending one or all of the convention’s offerings, be sure to stop by booth #139 in between sessions. Lynne Cushing, Buffy Escue, and Donna Jones will be there representing Advocate Capital, Inc. and can talk to you about case expense funding and products like The Advocate Flexline®.


By visiting the Advocate Capital, Inc. booth (#139) next week, you will also be entered to win a Limited Edition Led Zeppelin Gold 45 Record Plaque signed by the band! Don’t miss out, stop by and say hello!


We’ll see you in Las Vegas!


Employment Litigation Leaving Plaintiffs at Odds


Authored By: Iris Garrett


courtroomIt’s not looking good for plaintiffs involved in employment lawsuits. According to new data by Lex Machina, a research company that provides legal analytics to law firms, this type of litigation is mostly only working out well for employers.


In an article in the ABA Journal, Lex Machina is said to have reviewed nearly 72,000 cases over the last few months, covering lawsuits on employer retaliation, hostile work environments, race bias, and discrimination, and almost three-fourths of those cases ended in settlements. Lex Machina also found that employers prevailed 13 percent of the time when it came to summary judgement in these cases.


Lex Machina says the high settlement rate in employment litigation cases stems from the median time to termination, which is less than a year. It also says the median time to summary judgement is 19 months and two years to trial.


In the ABA Journal article, Lex Machina general counsel, Owen Byrd, says that though the findings should help plaintiff lawyers address employment discrimination and retaliation claims, the information also may add some reassurance to employers facing them, as well as their big law defense. However, Lex Machina says with more software advances, solos and small firms representing claimants can have a more level playing field, tailor their arguments to include these cases, and go head-to-head with larger firms.


To read the full article in the ABA Journal, click here.



Photo Credit: Wavebreak Media Ltd.



Excel Tips & Tricks – Maximize the Find & Replace Feature


Authored By: Billie Hardison


Man on ComputerIn our continuing series of Microsoft Excel tips and tricks that I have gathered over the years, today we consider the “find & replace” functions in Excel.   Many people use the “Find” feature in Excel to find a word or phrase that they are looking for. Do you ever use the “Replace” feature? This tool can come in handy when manipulating data.


To use the “Find” feature in Excel, simply hold down the control button on your keyboard and hit “F”. Here you can type in a word, any part of a word, or a phrase to find data. There is an additional tab in this window called “Replace”. Click on this tab and enter the word or phrase you would like to replace in the “Find what:” box. Then type the phrase you want to replace it with in the “Replace with:” box. You can replace every occurrence or you can replace the word one instance at a time.


What most people don’t realize is that this tool can be used to remove unwanted data from your spreadsheet.


Let’s say you export a list of names from your accounting software, but all of the names have some sort of appendix on them, like “xx”. Use the find and replace function to find “xx” and replace it with……nothing! Now, you have just removed the unwanted data from your file!


Be Careful: If you are replacing data, make sure you don’t replace anything that should be kept. In the example above, a person named Alexxa in the list would have the xx’s removed from the name.


If you are an Advocate Capital customer and need help preparing or manipulating data in the Excel application, feel free to contact me at


Here at Advocate Capital, Inc., we are not your everyday  lender.  We offer unlimited training to all our customers in a variety of applications.  This is just one of the many reasons you should become an Advocate Capital client today!



Billie Hardison

Training Specialist



Photo Credit: Dmitriy Shironosov

Attorney John Fisher Hosts “The Mastermind Experience”


Authored By: Iris Garrett


Advocate Capital, Inc. client and friend, Attorney John Fisher, is hosting a special event on Thursday, September 7th called “The Mastermind Experience”.


This one-day meeting in Washington, D.C. will bring together some of the top lawyers in the country to discuss strategic action and ideas for taking your injury practice to the next level. If you’re hoping to improve your firm’s management and marketing techniques, this Mastermind can help you do it!


Attendance for “The Mastermind Experience” is limited to 15 lawyers, but these members are also given a lifetime of advice from alumni, including weekly and monthly newsletters, tips, video conference calls and forums to keep them immersed in the Mastermind even after the one-day meeting comes to an end.


Attorney John Fisher says there are only a few spots left to sign up for this valuable event, so if you would like to join in “The Mastermind Experience,” register today!


You can also find more information about the event by clicking here.


Ron Netemeyer and Jill Harper Secure a $45 Million Judgment for Client



Ron Netemeyer and Jill HarperCongratulations to Mr. Ron Netemeyer, Ms. Jill Harper, and their client on receiving an outstanding bench award!


Mr. Netemeyer’s and Ms. Harper’s client, a 25-year old man, obtained justice after suffering a severe injury while playing in a large inflatable ball in a local Missouri mall.  The man went to the mall with his family and visited the Knockerball establishment with his nephew. While in the “Knockerball,” the man suffered a spinal fracture and spinal cord injury resulting in paralysis.


A “Knockerball” is a large inflatable clear rubber ball with a built-in shoulder strap harness. Participants are fitted and strapped in the ball and can play soccer, perform stunts, and crash into other participants.


Netemeyer and Harper claimed the employee at the establishment failed to fit, harness, and instruct their client on the use of the Knockerball. The complaint filed against the company included negligence, strict products liability and premise liability.  The defense failed to timely answer the claim although given an extension by Netemeyer and Harper. After reviewing the young man’s life care plan, medical bills, and economist’s report, the judge awarded the man approximately $45 million.


Mr. Netemeyer firmly believes in the utmost service to his clients, his community, and his country. He is a member of many civic organizations and contributes to a great number of charitable causes. Ron was a non-commissioned officer and served nine years in the Missouri and South Carolina Army National Guard. Ron earned both his B.S. and J.D. from the University of Missouri. He is a member of the American Association of Trial Attorneys, the Missouri Association of Trial Attorneys, and the Boone County Bar Association.


Ms. Harper continues to provide great results and customer service for her clients. She focuses her practice primarily on personal injury, wrongful death, medical malpractice and worker’s compensation cases. She is a graduate of the University Of Missouri Columbia School Of Law, is a member of the Boone County Bar Association, the Missouri Association of Trial Attorneys, the Missouri Bar Association, and is an approved Missouri Fraternal Order of Police attorney.

Harper, Evans, Wade, Netemeyer, is Located in Columbia, Missouri, and serves clients throughout the state in personal injury claims, family law matters, and criminal defense. The firm’s lawyers have more than 100 years of combined experience and have a team of skilled legal professionals that stand ready to help you.


Advocate Capital, Inc. is proud to support the firm Harper, Evans, Wade, Netemeyer, and all plaintiff attorneys as they pursue justice on behalf of those injured through the fault of others.


Michelle Rigsby

Executive Client Manager


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

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