Resolved Winters,Yonker,&Rousselle,psclied to many times

L Review updated:

My complaint is against Matthew Kannady .
He works in the office of Winters, Yonkers, $Rousselle.I have many complaints. They were called Saturday
after My boyfriend contacted them. I was in a bad car wreck on June 14th, I woke up Saturday and was sent to Hospital because I didn't even realize I had been in a car wreck. A Grey Caudeel I believe came to my house Sunday to discuss. I was really still confusedas I told him, yet I signed papers and realized they charged 35% . Most charge 33%. I have been trhough rehab, where they sent me and it was doing no good yet they kept on sending me there knowing it wasn't helping me. Then they sent me to Flordia to have surgery, I didn't understand why Flordia. I liked the Dr. however my neck is worse now than it was before, My head stopped hurting but I have other nerves I guess messed. I then was and still am having Lower back problems. Dr Gomes made to times and dates for me to go back to Florida, Dec, and Jan. yet they would not send me . They wanted me to just settle. Then Feb they were going to send me and I was scared by this time to go. There is something shady about this whole deal. I was told the cost of everything was one figure, then it cahnged to another . The Lawyer made more then me and I am still unable to ever work again. They don't care about that at all . I called today and as always I was told something different bt jaylynn. I then looked Winters and Yonkers up on the computer and they are beiung sued for 3 Million Dollars in Tampa. I knew and know they need to be looked into . This is some kind of strange deal going on here . I needed to see Dr.Gomes however he only comes to Ky. oonce or twice a Month! So I then asked what do I do I am in severe pain. no answers. Please contact me. There is an Lawyer that also is leaving the firm due to this I am sure he don't want to be disbard. I callled today and ask to speak to Rousselle of course that didn't happen. This is a money making deal for the atty's and Doctor. Yet the person who is hurt OH WELL.

My name is Sharon R Langford
[protected]
[protected]

Please also see Tampa Lawsuite against the other Lawyers Winters & Yonkers. If I had seen that I would have never called or used them as My Lawyer.

I plan on getting another Lawyer to investigate this matter .I have many records, But not one time is Dr. Gomes on any Kentucky pamplets, or on my billing ???????? Is he not suppose to be here, or is he making them more money under the table and putting in another account ??????? I and many others have a great deal of questions about this Law firm.
Thank You

They owe me 2% of 200, 000 and they double charged me from state farm's PIP then again on my settlement. I have the records.They are dirty, underhanded, and I have a feeling not legal. somehow they are getting away with this.

Responses

  • Li
    lisa Feb 18, 2009

    please stop Lawyers such as Winters, Yonkers, & Rousselle from cheating people out of there money. Since when does a Lawyer make 35% to start a case.?

    3 Votes
  • Ca
    Cat Mar 30, 2009

    No one is supposed to sign legal papers while under the influence of drugs or alcohol. Have you contacted the KY Bar Associations? I'm curious why a FL doctor and they have a FL office. You may want to call the state agency in charge of insurance regulation and address the issues on insurance billing.

    3 Votes
  • Bo
    boo Apr 25, 2009

    I am sooooo glad I read this, I was looking for a good Atty, NOW IT WON'T be WYR. I almost called them. Thank God for websites.I agree with cat, I would check these guys out .

    Thanks

    Boo

    2 Votes
  • Bo
    boo Apr 25, 2009

    see what I mean !!!

    2 Votes
  • Bo
    boo Apr 25, 2009

    you go WYR lol. straight to Hello9111111111111111111111111111111111111111111111


    I hope people check this out like I did before they call you all, that is for sure, go back to Florida. You even have Ky, atty's in with you . They should be smarter then that I would think, but then again there is GREED. They want to grow up and be just like you 2.

    2 Votes
  • Bo
    boo Apr 25, 2009

    you guys ask if people are aware of what insurance companies will do to take your money, that is 2 funny, people should be aware of what you guys will do.
    Insurance companies are great compaired to you guys iyt appears that way . so change you tv ads, they are bullsh#### wow, what a great law suite he had against Winters and Yonkers in Tampa see, any one can do that I guess If you treat your clients, like your partners.It sure seems like you might .

    -1 Votes
  • Bo
    boo Apr 25, 2009

    call hughs, coleman, heavy hitter, any one but WYR .OMG READ <

    1 Votes
  • Bo
    boo Apr 29, 2009

    xBicceyx better question, you have not a clue what ur talking about
    so why do you even comment on this? so you need to go to a chat room or something .
    you are clueless I guess to laws. I believe you are an internet person that spends a great deal of time reading, as I said and making comments you know NOTHING about, so grow up go play in your chat rooms or something and learn what don't involve you STAY OUT OF IT!!!
    you have not a CLUE do you ?Don't make comments about this, It don't concern you . Are you that much of an airhead that you don't understand that? I guess so .

    1 Votes
  • Bo
    boo Apr 29, 2009

    yes by the way, This website is working, I have had many calls on the same issues with the atty's listed. So xbicceyx, your so wrong, Try Sharon has had 27 calls so far, might I add, I was one of them and all very unhappy with WYR in Kentucky, so I guess you know nothing about this problem, or you must be someone who knows one of them lolol. You are just I guess making yourself look, well not to up to date with realith . Please save your comments, no one cares about what you have to say, We all have had the problems, not you . Have you been in a car wreck ? If not stay out of this.

    1 Votes
  • Bo
    boo Apr 29, 2009

    AGREE

    1 Votes
  • Bo
    boo Apr 29, 2009

    by the way xBicceyx, whom ever did your surgery on your so fake boobs, did a bad job they look like rocks lolol. that would turn a man off If I had to touch something that looked like hard rocks, I guess along with your bleach lololol. what a Fake you are.but I guess thats why you get involved in something such as this that has nothing to do with you, unless, as I said your their friend. People know that or, maybe they paid for your boobs !!! you think ?lolol. stop making yourself look stupid in this area.well if you ever get in a wreck, which I hope not there is a bright side they will replace your implants lololol...maybe they will do a better job the second time around.when a guy tells you this .you should listen.

    1 Votes
  • Ro
    Robin Jun 04, 2009

    I was involved in an auto accident August 26, 2008. I hired Winters, Yonkers and Rouselle actually Peter Kuhn in which I am in the process of firing due to not being able to contact him either via us mail or phone. I have called numerous times and if I was extremely lucky I would get to a lady named Megan which works along side of Peter. I was sent to 1st Physicians Rehab on reccomendation of Mr. Kuhn, there they done physical therapy, massage, "electro" therapy and traction. I have neck and shoulder injuries which were confirmed by an MRI which has resulted in me having severe "pressure" headaches and very limited movement of my right arm. Liver issues were also found from the MRI and an CT scan with contrast was ordered and YES I listed all allergies which were IVP/Contrast Dye, PCN, adn Phenergan and they told me to take 4 days of benedryl, and 4 days of Prednisone and low and behold it didn't work, I ended up in the unit with anaphylactoid shock and couldn't tell anything for 9 days. The PIP ran out and I haven't seen the doctor at 1st physicians since April 1, 2009. I called and I need to pay for the next visit which they are going to close me out at that time. Come on now I don't have a job to pay for the visit and why not use the other persons auto insurance since the wreck was her fault anyway. Why close me out now? I am worse but again it all revolves around the old high and mighty $$ which I don't have anyway and the $10, 000. is gone. These attorneys are dirty, underhanded and just greedy. I has been almost a year and never has a settlement been discussed, I asked Mr. Kuhn and he said that he was waiting for medical records and it could take a year or two. NO WAY!! The lady that hit me was in her late 80's get with it before she dies. Please people read all of this and contact us, WYR aren't even in Louisville, neither are the doctors. They are all from Florida.

    1 Votes
  • Bo
    boo Jun 05, 2009

    I am so glad you did this Robin, More people need to make others aware of how BAD WYR are.

    2 Votes
  • Bo
    boo Jun 09, 2009

    no it is the TRUTH. I take it your friends with one of these dishonest, people?Sounds like it.Suck up lolol. troll? No just someone who was screwed by them sorry, I have another name for boo,
    You have no clue

    0 Votes
  • Bo
    boo Jun 09, 2009

    GORDAN
    MIND UR OWN BUSINESS !!!

    0 Votes
  • Bo
    boo Jul 26, 2009

    robyn please call me sherry, or Carl Samuel
    502-583-3898

    0 Votes
  • Bo
    boo Jul 26, 2009

    Wednesday, July 02, 2008
    Mulholland wins verdict against Winters & Yonker
    TAMPA -- Personal injury lawyer Richard Mulholland has won damages that could add up to about $3-million from Winters & Yonker, a firm he said hacked into his computer and copied files to take business from him.

    William Winters and Marc Yonker worked for Mulholland until 2001. So did a legal assistant Mulholland said gained remote access to the computer on behalf of Winters & Yonker. Mulholland did not sue the legal assistant, also a former employee, but sued the two lawyers in Hillsborough Circuit Court.

    Late Monday, after a weeklong trial, a jury awarded damages of about $189, 000 against Yonker and about $748, 500 against Winters. But Florida law requires a judge to triple the jury award when attorneys are found to have violated a civil theft statute.

    Circuit Judge Richard Nielsen has not entered a final order.

    In a brief telephone interview Wednesday, Yonker said he has filed motions for a mistrial as well as a new trial, and if those fail, he plans to appeal. He declined to comment about the case until a judge rules on the motions.

    -- Colleen Jenkins and Thomas Kaplan, Times staff writers

    Posted by tampabaycom at 05:29:17 PM on July 2, 2008
    in Hillsborough | Permalink | ShareThis


    another way to prove how WYR really are READ THIS Louisville Ky, and anyone else for that matter.

    2 Votes
  • Bo
    boo Aug 02, 2009

    oh guess what Not only are they from Florida, so is ASK GARY, they 2 are working with Now Winters and Yonkers!!!. in Kentucky however, they live in Tampa!!! I just hope the nice Doctor they use isn't like them

    Sherry

    1 Votes
  • Bo
    boo Aug 07, 2009

    www.sunbiz.org - Department of State

    0 Votes
  • Bo
    boo Aug 21, 2009

    Updated: 07/12/2008 12:14 am

    TAMPA - Lawyers William Winters and Marc Yonker - famous locally for ads on billboards, phone books and Web sites - must pay their former employer more than $1.7 million for stealing his clients, a judge ruled Friday.

    The ruling backs up, but reduces, a jury's verdict last month.

    On June 30, a jury determined that Winters and Yonker removed client files from Mulholland & Associates without permission, had a former secretary copy them, then returned the files. The two men also had the former secretary hack into the law office computer and change phone numbers and addresses of clients so firm owner Richard Mulholland could not contact the clients and ask them to stay with his firm.

    The jury awarded Mulholland nearly $1 million in damages. Because the allegations involved civil theft, the damages were to be tripled to $3 million.
    Winters and Yonker asked Circuit Judge Richard Nielsen to declare a mistrial or set aside the jury's verdict. Nielsen declined to do so but did reduce the jury's verdict from $1 million to about $575, 000. Then, per the law, he tripled those damages to $1.7 million.

    "The main thing about this case, " Mulholland said Friday, "it has never been primarily a matter of money. It is about principle. These two employees were my most trusted employees of many years. I trusted them with everything, otherwise it could not have happened."
    Winters and Yonker did not return a call seeking comment.

    Mulholland's lawsuit said that Winters started working for him in 1985; Yonker in 1995.

    Secretary Testified Against Duo

    In 1996, Mulholland hired Elizabeth Chapa. During her employment, she worked as a legal secretary for Winters and a paralegal for Yonker.

    Chapa, who helped Winters and Yonker copy files, agreed to testify against the two in exchange for immunity from liability.

    In court documents, Chapa said she had an extramarital affair with Winters. Mulholland had warned Chapa to end the relationship but she did not, according to court documents. At Mulholland's request, Winters fired Chapa in April 2001.

    About 30 minutes after firing her, Winters called Chapa to say he wanted to come to her house and discuss the situation. There, he told Chapa he was going to open his own firm in a few months and she could join him. Beginning in May 2001, the lawsuit said, Winters began renting a room in Chapa's home to use as an office.

    Over the following several months, Winters and Yonker removed case files from the Mulholland office without authorization. They met Chapa at the University of Tampa. She made copies of the files and they were returned to Mulholland's office, according to court documents.

    Yonker spoke to several clients and told them he and Winters were leaving Mulholland's firm. He also told them that he and Winters had performed the majority of the work on their cases.

    On several occasions in May and June 2001, Chapa logged on to the Mulholland & Associates computer system under another employee's name and changed at least 16 phone numbers and addresses, the suit said. With the incorrect numbers and addresses, Mulholland would be prevented from any quick attempt at preventing his clients from leaving, the lawsuit said.

    Chapa's affair with Winters ended in 2002 when she became pregnant with her husband, she said in court documents.

    As Mulholland's lawsuit progressed in the courts, the FBI contacted Chapa about her actions, Mulholland said.

    "The FBI has been very active in this case, " he said. "Of course, they don't tell you what they do over there."

    No criminal charges have been filed.

    Mulholland had asked for $4 million in damages, claiming civil theft and conspiracy to commit civil theft.

    After six days of trial, the jury returned, saying Winters and Yonker did not conspire to commit theft. They did, however, commit theft, the jury determined.

    The jury determined Winters was liable for nearly $750, 000 in damages; Yonker for nearly $190, 000.

    Now that the judge has reduced the damages, Winters' liability is $383, 105 in damages - tripled to about $1.15 million. He also must pay Mulholland $122, 500 in legal fees.

    Yonker is liable for about $189, 000 in damages - tripled to about $567, 000. He does not owe legal fees.

    Mulholland said he hopes the Florida Bar will investigate Winters and Yonker.

    "Every lawyer in town is talking about the possibility, " he said.

    Bar Aware Of Verdict

    Officials with the Florida Bar said last week that they are aware of the jury's June 30 verdict and were waiting to study the judge's final judgment before deciding whether to proceed with an investigation. That final judgment came Friday.

    Previously, Winters has had three complaints filed with the Bar. Yonker has had none.

    In a 2004 complaint, a woman wrote that Winters helped her win a personal injury case against Wal-Mart years earlier but did not follow up after a jury verdict. She wrote that she had problems figuring out how much money was hers and what she owed her doctors.

    Winters responded that the woman had accused him of "selling her out" at trial but said he advised her that her case would not produce a large verdict.

    The Bar dropped the investigation because the statute of limitations had passed.

    In 2004, Winters received an admonishment from the Bar after he was found to have committed "minor misconduct."

    A report from the Bar states that Winters failed to resolve medical bills for a client after a settlement.

    Last year, a former client complained that Winters worked on his case while suspended from the Bar. After review, the Bar determined that Winters was suspended because he had not filed the required forms that said he completed his continuing legal training. Winters had completed the training but had failed to report it to the Bar. The complaint was dismissed.

    Reporter Thomas W. Krause can be reached at (813) 259-7698 or [email protected]

    118 days ago by boo +1 Votes


    see what I mean !!!

    118 days ago by boo +1 Votes


    you go WYR lol. straight to Hello9111111111111111111111111111111111111111111111


    I hope people check this out like I did before they call you all, that is for sure, go back to Florida. You even have Ky, atty's in with you . They should be smarter then that I would think, but then again there is GREED. They want to grow up and be just like you 2.

    118 days ago by boo -1 Votes


    you guys ask if people are aware of what insurance companies will do to take your money, that is 2 funny, people should be aware of what you guys will do.

    0 Votes
  • Hi
    hit&run Aug 26, 2009

    I'm having a problem with winters younkers.They told me i had a good case for my accident.Now they are talking about my case isnt that strong now even thouugh the man perjured his self in the depo.now they are talking about i should settle for whatever i get.I told them to set it up since they dont belive i have a good case.every time i call for them i am allways transferd to libby or philip and that does not do me no good cause they act like they dont know ### so i get pissed off.now i am about ready to fire them cause they aint doing nothing eatting food and taking peoples money.can anybody help me out?

    0 Votes
  • Bo
    boo Sep 02, 2009

    How much do you have to pay them if you decide to let them go?Also are you in Kentucky?

    0 Votes
  • Bo
    boo Sep 02, 2009

    http://link.brightcove.com/services/player/bcpid14345123001?bclid=14358325001&bctid=8803612001

    0 Votes
  • Bo
    boo Sep 02, 2009

    LAWYERS: "Winters And Yonker Must Pay In Civil Theft Case" out of Florida
    According to the following story found on line at Tampa Bay Online from the Tampa Tribune - "Winters And Yonker Must Pay In Civil Theft Case."

    Per this story, a Florida civil jury awarded nearly $1 million to Florida attorney Richard Mulholland of Mulholland and Associates on his claims that his former associates, Bill Winters and Mark Yonker, stole clients and case files when they left his firm to start their own firm.

    Winters and Yonker also have offices in Louisville and Lexington, Kentucky as well as in Florida.

    The Tampa Tribune further reported that

    After six days of trial, the jury returned saying Winters and Yonker did not conspire to commit theft. They did, however, commit theft, the jury determined.

    The jury said Winters must pay Mulholland nearly $750, 000 in damages and $122, 500 in legal fees. Yonker must pay nearly $190, 000 in damages but does not have to reimburse for any legal fees, the jury determined.

    For the complete story by Thomas W. Krause with the Tampa Tribune, then click on the following heading. An extract of the story is as follows:

    Winters And Yonker Must Pay In Civil Theft Case
    Published: July 2, 2008

    TAMPA - A lawyer who claims two of his associates stole clients and case files when they left to start their own firm was awarded nearly $1 million from a jury on Monday.

    Because the allegations involved civil theft, the defendants could be forced to pay three times the awarded damages.

    According to a lawsuit, Richard Mulholland, who ran Mulholland & Associates, said William Winters and Marc Yonker removed case files from the office during lunch hours and gave them to a former secretary who copied the files before they were returned. The secretary, Elizabeth Chapa, also hacked into Mulholland's computer system to change phone numbers and addresses of clients so Mulholland would have a difficult time contacting them in an effort to convince them to stay with his firm, the suit alleges.

    * * *

    Donald Smith, the defense attorney for Winters, said the jury verdict is preliminary and the judge has not entered the final order.

    "There are multiple post-trial motions and issues to be decided by the judge on both defendants, " Smith said. "This matter is still pending."

    He declined further comment.

    Circuit Judge Richard Nielsen has not yet ruled on post-trial motions or the possibility of tripling the damages. Hearings on those matters are set to begin Monday.

    * * *

    Mulholland asked for $4 million in damages, claiming civil theft and conspiracy to commit civil theft.

    See also, Lawyers on the hook for on $1M for story at TampaBay.com from the St. Petersburg Times by reporter Colleen Jenkins.


    Posted on Thursday, July 03, 2008 at 05:33 PM in Lawyers, News | Permalink
    TrackBack

    0 Votes
  • Ro
    Robin Sep 02, 2009

    http://www.merchantcircle.com/business/Winters.Yonker.And.Rousselle.Psc.866-997-4878

    Check out this for WYR. The toll free number listed comes back to Florida

    0 Votes
  • Bo
    boo Sep 02, 2009

    Winters Yonker & Rousselle Psc, Eminence KY 40019 ...MerchantCircle.com -- Winters Yonker & Rousselle Psc of, Eminence, KY. ... Manage Your Reputation - Manage your business' online reputation on ...
    www.merchantcircle.com/business/Winters.Yonker.And.Rousselle.Psc.866-997-4878 - Cached - Similar


    There is no BUSINESS in eminence, it takes you back to Fl.!!!

    call that ph. Number

    0 Votes
  • Bo
    boo Sep 02, 2009

    Winters Yonker & Rousselle Psc
    Eminence, KY 40019
    866-997-4878


    go into white pages www.whitepages.com and enter the Ph# into reverse phone lookup, and press enter, it will

    take you back to Florida Landline, the name is not known but the city is Sarasota Fl, The same, with 6661 Dixie Hwy . it is a parking lot. When I wrote Winters Yonkers and ask them about the Florida landline they seem to act like it is not true. Look up reverse #'s and everyone will see this all goes Back to Sarasota Fl. where they LIVE!!! They DO NOT LIVE IN KENTUCKY call Fl office they will be in, call here they are never here, maybe once a MONTH.I do not understand what part of these guys are not HONEST that no one in Kentucky don't get.

    1 Votes
  • Bo
    boo Nov 02, 2009

    IF ANYONE HIRED WINTERS &YONKERS, DID YOU CALL THEM OR DID THEY CONTACT YOU? IF THEY CONTACTED YOU PLEASE E-MAIL ME IT IS VERY IMPORTANT FOR ME AS IT IS YOU...
    OR CALL 502 303-4704 IF YOU WANT TO WIN THE AMOUNT OF MONEY YOU DESERVE!!!


    PLEASE CALL ASAP

    1 Votes
  • Bo
    boo Nov 02, 2009

    Where did Dr. Gomes go ? He was working for WYR? now they have a Dr. Lewis in Kentucky which, I wish I had the chance to go in Kentucky, I had to go to Florida, Dr. Gomes was good however, I didn't understand why I had to fly out of state, or settle and find my own Doctor??????????????????????? to many un answered questions

    1 Votes
  • Bo
    boo Nov 03, 2009

    I am glad I am getting calls this works great!

    0 Votes
  • Bo
    boo Nov 03, 2009

    thanks for calling people.

    0 Votes
  • Li
    lisa Feb 05, 2010

    Winters and Yonker say goodbye to Rousselle
    By Andrew Wolfson [email protected] The Courier-Journal
    September 05, 2009 01:45 AM

    The law firm that advertises itself as home of the "aggressive attorneys" has lost one the faces from its ubiquitous TV commercials.

    Winters Yonker & Rousselle, whose name is stripped across the top of every inside page of the Louisville phone book, has jettisoned its only partner licensed in Kentucky, Joseph Rousselle.

    Marc Yonker, who practices in Tampa, Fla., said Rousselle left the firm voluntarily.

    "There is no juicy dirt on this one, " he said.

    Rousselle didn't respond to messages left Thursday at his office in Tampa.

    The Courier-Journal reported in July 2008 that Yonker and William Winters had been slapped that month with a $1.7 million judgment for civil theft, after they were accused of copying files from their former mentor, Richard Mulholland, and hacking into his computer system to steal business.

    Mulholland said Yonker has paid his portion of the judgment but that Winters has appealed.

    The newspaper also reported how competing Louisville law firms complained that two lawyers subject to the Florida judgment are not licensed in Kentucky, although they are featured in the firm's extensive Louisville ad campaigns.

    Rousselle was licensed in Kentucky in October 2006, about a year after the firm opened its Louisville office.

    The story noted that Winters Yonker & Rousselle was one of at least three Florida firms that had established offices in Louisville; local lawyers say they may have been drawn by the more liberal recoveries allowed under Kentucky's no-fault insurance law after Florida tightened its statute.

    Matthew Kannady and Gray Caudill, who are licensed in Kentucky and practice in the firm now known as Winters & Yonker, could not be reached Thursday for comment.

    Reporter Andrew Wolfson can be reached at (502) 582-7189.


    p. 1/1

    - JCPS to cancel seven tuition-based preschools

    0 Votes
  • Li
    lisa Feb 05, 2010

    A case of money, deceit, sex and lawyers
    Thomas French and Colleen Jenkins, Times Staff Writers
    In Print: Sunday, July 13, 2008


    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
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    [CARRIE PRATT | Times]
    Attorney Richard Mulholland stands in his North Tampa home next to his family crest, which bears the motto, Semper Praecinctus. He translated that as “always ready for battle.”

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    TAMPA — In front of the jury, the case played like a cross between Peyton Place and Bleak House. There were whispers of extramarital affairs, accusations of straight-faced betrayal, stories of files secretly copied and computer records surreptitiously altered, and reams of testimony confirming the worst stereotypes about ambulance-chasing attorneys.

    It began with one lawyer — the old man of the firm, his hair gone white, but his name still well-known after years of TV commercials — accusing two proteges of stealing the heart of his practice. A personal injury lawyer, personally injured. It ended with the younger lawyers in a crowded courtroom, giving their side of the knotted story. By then they had formed a new firm, with ads of their own, touting themselves as "Aggressive Attorneys."

    A little too aggressive, apparently. The jury recently found the two proteges had committed civil theft and hit them with a verdict that could cost them nearly $2-million.

    "This case has been a nightmare. Seven years. It's been going on for seven years, " one defense attorney said last week, shuffling wearily out of another hearing. "It's an apocalyptic nightmare."

    • • •

    In business, as in love, breakups can be messy. Colleagues part ways, accuse each other of unfair tactics, go to court. But the breakup between Richard Mulholland and his former associates, Bill Winters and Marc Yonker, rivals the nastiest of divorces.

    The case offers a detailed tour of the highly competitive world of personal injury law. It is a world of pinstripe suits and gritty ambition, where lawyers exude politesse in court but can curse like sailors in private, where female employees are still routinely referred to as "girls, " and where millions can be made by those who know when to settle and when to take a case to court, otherwise known as "the pit."

    Personal injury attorneys come in two varieties — "finders" and "grinders." Finders put their faces on billboards and phone book ads, attracting clients, cases, fees. Then they hire grinders to work the phones, meet with insurance adjusters, juggle hundreds of cases for the chance of catching a big one.

    Richard Riggsbee Mulholland, 74, is a classic finder. The Morgan & Morgan of his time, he pioneered the use of legal advertising two decades ago when other attorneys criticized the practice as unseemly. The lifelong Tampa resident had always been a loner who did things his way. At age 9 he shined shoes for a dime a pair, learning about marketing and competition; later he funded his law school education by playing the trumpet in his own orchestra, the Gentlemen of Swing.

    He opened a solo personal injury firm in 1960 and, with the help of just one secretary, spent a decade handling every aspect of the car accident, slip and fall, burn and bite cases that came his way. For 15 years, he says, he slept on a bed in his office, while his three children lived with his ex-wife. One week, Mulholland tried three jury cases.

    "If I keep this up, I'll never see 40, " he realized.

    Soon he was building a larger practice. At its height, his firm spent $1-million a year on advertising and occupied the entire 39th floor of what is now the Bank of America building. The dividends left Mulholland flush enough to buy a twin-engine plane and purchase 500 acres of what would become prime real estate in Brandon.

    Bill Winters, 48, wasn't long out of law school when he started at Mulholland's firm in 1985. A decade and a half later, he was handling the firm's major litigation and lunching with his boss at the Tampa Club on the top floor of their office skyscraper.

    "I trusted him, " Mulholland says.

    The elder attorney rarely interacted with another young grinder who joined the firm in 1995. Marc Yonker's job was to settle cases over the phone instead of going to court.

    Neither Winters nor Yonker, 41, granted interviews for this story. But hundreds of pages of depositions and trial transcripts make it clear that by 2001 both attorneys were growing restless. The situation grew more volatile when rumors spread that Winters was having an affair with Betsy Chapa, then a 29-year-old paralegal at the firm. Both were married. A secretary had seen them kissing in the office.

    Mulholland considered himself to be understanding about "matters of the heart, " but firm policy forbade office romances. He told Winters to fire his paramour. Winters carried out the task on April 27, 2001.

    Why fire the woman and not the man?

    "It was a matter of expediency for me, " Mulholland says. "It was easier for me to let a secretary go than a lawyer that I was working with on so many big cases."

    Within two months, both Winters and Yonker quit. Mulholland says neither gave him any notice. Winters, he says, simply called to say he had left his resignation letter in the top right-hand drawer of his desk.

    "No phone call, no goodbyes, no handshakes, no nothing, " says Mulholland.

    A quick inventory told Mulholland that the pair had stripped him of his most promising files, his "high-dollar" cases.

    "They basically took 40 years of my work" — Mulholland snaps his fingers — "just like that."

    •••

    Mulholland's office was reduced to a skeleton.

    Even before Winters and Yonker left, Mulholland had been downsizing. His ads, once dominant in Tampa Bay, were now dwarfed by Morgan & Morgan's marketing blitz. Mulholland didn't have the resources, or the desire, to keep pace.

    With the loss of his last two grinders and his best cases, Mulholland struggled to stay afloat. He fired staff, closed departments and suffered the embarrassment of moving out of the skyscraper and renting space from other lawyers.

    It took him three years, he says, to realize the depth of the sabotage. The first clue came when his office manager went looking for a former client who had complained about Yonker. But they couldn't find the man. The firm's electronic records didn't match up with the client's original paperwork. Someone had gone into the computer and changed numbers and addresses for this client and others.

    Mulholland hired an investigator who had spent years uncovering financial fraud for the IRS. Following the trail of the hacked computer records, the investigator sought out Betsy Chapa. She told Mulholland exactly how his clients had been lured away.

    Winters and Yonker, Chapa said, had visited her Brandon home the night of her firing. In her living room, they told her they planned to leave, too, and wanted her to work for them.

    Chapa said she began meeting Yonker at the University of Tampa campus. Yonker would give her one or two of the firm's client files each time. She would copy them and store the copies in her spare bedroom, returning the originals to Yonker.

    She also explained what happened to Mulholland's client records. In May 2001, just after her firing, she remotely accessed the law firm's computer network and altered information for about 20 to 30 clients. The changes were meant to keep the firm from contacting those clients after Winters and Yonker left.

    The weekend before Mulholland knew Yonker had resigned, she said, the younger attorney and Chapa met with clients to get them to sign new contracts.

    These revelations turned Mulholland's despair to anger. He hunkered down for a fight.

    • • •

    Winters and Yonker learned from their mentor.

    Since opening their own practice, they have starred in TV commercials, appeared in color ads on the front of the phone book, launched a Web site that gives their toll-free number just above a photo of a speeding ambulance. Today, their faces loom from billboards around Tampa Bay, their heads depicted on a scale too big for the billboards' frames, with Yonker's tousled, highlighted hair and the dome of Winters' bald pate jutting into the open sky.

    Their sworn statements in the Mulholland case suggest they may well have felt exploited during their time in the older attorney's firm. Mulholland personally handled perhaps half a dozen cases at a time; Yonker alone was assigned to as many as 350. By most accounts, Mulholland rarely appeared in court, conducted a deposition, or fielded clients' calls. But when the fees rolled in, roughly two-thirds of that revenue went to him and the firm.

    Burt Alvarez, another personal injury attorney, says it was well-known that Winters ran the firm.

    "A sharp lawyer, " Alvarez calls Winters. "He made Mulholland many, many millions of dollars."

    Winters and Yonker countered any suggestion that they'd stolen anything from Mulholland. Throughout the case, there was a great deal of discussion about whether it was even possible to steal a client. Clients, it was pointed out, are not property.

    "These are not cars, " Tim Prugh, Yonker's lawyer, said in an interview, bristling at an analogy Mulholland made several times. "These are human beings, with human problems, and you don't even know them by name. You don't know about their kids. You don't know about their accidents. You don't know anything about them. And you want all of the money. That ain't right."

    • • •

    None of this acrimony appears to have harmed the clients, either those who stayed with Mulholland or those who went with Winters and Yonker. Two of Yonker's clients told the St. Petersburg Times they had felt no pressure to follow him to his new firm. They were pleased with the settlements he had won for them in claims following car accidents. The battle between their lawyers and Mulholland was of no consequence to them.

    "That wasn't my problem, " says Trudy Taylor, a 38-year-old St. Petersburg woman. "I just wanted my case solved."

    Jaime Wolf, 29, of Ruskin, said Yonker "was the only person I saw, so he was the only person I trusted."

    Did she ever talk to Mulholland?

    "Not once."

    • • •

    At last month's trial, Mulholland and his former proteges didn't exchange so much as a polite greeting.

    "It was like they were two absolute strangers, " Mulholland says.

    The legal soap opera drew a crowd. Other attorneys flocked to the courtroom to witness their brethren locked in combat.

    Laying out his grievances, Mulholland looked into the eyes of the jurors, as he'd counseled so many of his clients to do over the decades. Betsy Chapa confirmed the computer hacking and the secret meetings, as well as her affair with Winters.

    By the time Chapa testified, her personal and professional relationships with Winters were long over. She quit Winters' and Yonker's firm in 2003 and did not speak to Winters again until he called her at work one day late last year. By then the Mulholland lawsuit was nearing trial, with Chapa listed as a key witness. That day on the phone, she said, Winters floated the idea of her coming back to work for him.

    "He also indicated that his firm was certainly all about the money, " Chapa recalled, "and the door was always open if I wanted to return."

    Winters and Yonker testified that they had not asked Chapa to hack into Mulholland's computer and change any client information. Yonker acknowledged he could have better handled his departure from the firm. He pointed out that he had already tried to compensate Mulholland for his share of the fees from his old clients.

    "I would love to pay him, " Yonker said.

    Winters acknowledged the affair with Chapa. But he said he didn't remember dangling a job offer in front of her or saying his firm was "all about the money" when he called her in late 2007.

    Throughout the week, as one bomb after another exploded from the witness stand, Tim Prugh could feel the withering judgment from the jurors. Yonker's attorney believed in his client. He agreed that Yonker had made some mistakes, but he certainly didn't think he was a thief. Still, he understood that the jurors were watching everyone at the defense table, studying their faces for signs of guilt or shame.

    Prugh just kept scribbling on his legal pad. Over and over, he wrote:

    God, please help me.

    • • •

    On the sixth evening of the trial, the jury found both Winters and Yonker liable for civil theft.

    Winters bore the brunt of the blame for being "the brains behind the operation, " said juror Susan Pace. Though some jurors partially pardoned the men's actions as typical of competition, Pace, a Tampa resident and homemaker, didn't buy the spin.

    "Wrong is still wrong, " she said.

    On Friday, Hillsborough Circuit Judge Richard Nielsen ruled that the verdict was excessive but that both Winters and Yonker had done wrong. He denied the defense's motion for a new trial and, as required by statute, tripled the damages after cutting the initial amount pinned on Winters. The defense has vowed to appeal, but if the judgment stands, Winters and Yonker will owe Mulholland $1.8-million.

    It remains to be seen whether the damages will end up crippling their 7-year-old firm or whether the verdict will jeopardize their law licenses. The Florida Bar would not confirm whether it has a pending investigation against either attorney.

    • • •

    Last week, Mulholland pondered the case at his red-brick home on the shore of Lake Ellen in North Tampa. The centerpiece of the house — aside from its view of the lake — is an imposing living room with a two-story ceiling and a fireplace, accented with swords and jewel-toned fabrics and vaguely medieval statues of hunting dogs.

    Mulholland talked about his victory over Winters and Yonker with tempered triumph, more matter of fact than gloating.

    "I had to bring them to justice, " he said. "They had to account for what they did."

    A few feet away, the fireplace was crowned with his family crest, draped with a Scottish tartan and adorned with the Latin motto Semper Praecinctus. Asked what it means, Mulholland smiled.

    "Always ready for battle."

    Colleen Jenkins can be reached at [email protected] or (813) 226-3337. Thomas French can be reached at [email protected] or (727) 893-8486. Times researcher John Martin contributed to this story.


    [Last modified: Jul 19, 2008 10:55 AM]

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  • Li
    lisa Feb 05, 2010

    Ask Gary" Issues in Lawyer Advertising
    Ed NormandAttorney
    (866) 735-1102 Ext 336Posted by Ed NormandJuly 03, 2007 10:13 AM
    Tags: Auto Accidents0 CommentsPrint ArticleSubscribeAccording to recent press reports The Florida Bar has taken action against a number of lawyers who have obtained clients from the 1-800-ASK-GARY referral service. Ask Gary advertisements targeted auto accident victims inviting them to call the service where they were referred to various service providers including chiropractic and legal services. Much of the medical and chiropractic care is subsidized by the Personal Injury Protection (PIP) insurance that is mandatory under Florida's current automobile insurance scheme. PIP is set to sunset in October. Major insurance companies, including Allstate and State Farm, favor abandoning the PIP system due to many abuses and promise large premium reductions to consumers in return. Medical providers, including chiropractors and hospitals, and some lawyers that profit from the PIP insurance system want PIP to stay.

    The Bar used its disciplinary authority in connection with the conduct of approximately 34 lawyers. The forms of action taken by the Bar against the lawyers varied ranging from fines to diversion. The Bar's investigation involved some of Florida's largest advertising law firms. The problem was that the advertisements obtained clients for lawyers through advertising methods Florida Lawyers are prohibited from using under Florida Bar ethical rules . These methods included personal testimonials from accident victims which are forbidden in advertisements by lawyers in Florida. Now that the Bar has taken action, it appears that Florida Attorneys will no longer accept clients from this service.

    For more information on this subject, please refer to our section on Car and Motorcycle Accidents.


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  • Le
    let's talk about it Jan 22, 2011

    W & Y are crooks, I was injury Feb 2, 2010 and call 1-800 ask Gary well Peter Kuhn he's my case manager and he hasn't done much of anything. They don't like to return phone calls and fail to keep me inform of his phone conversations with the claim adjuster from Greyhound. They bill was paid already First Phys... there Doc.
    I have so many Hospital Bills unpaid that are now in collection they constantly calls me asking for there money. My primary Doc. had to send me to physical therapy at U of L outpatient clinic. cause they wasn't helping me at all. My case still hasn't settle yet because I refuse to accept his offer. He first said he was asking for 80, 000 which i new i wouldn't get that much but my medical expenses is 16, 000 thousand. well when I spoke with him this month he claim
    that am only getting 2, 000 thousand, I ask him were is my back pay money from work. He said my medical expense was 16, 000 and that's what the adjuster offer. so how is he getting paid. nothing this man says is making sense. then he calls with a new offer and said she raise the amount to 20, 000. So he would give me 4, 000 I told him how's that possible that's just 4, 000 more added to the last amount. I ask him were is my pain and suffering? He was speechless. He keep telling me he hasn't started his Close and Argument yet with the claim adjuster. I'm still trying to figure out when did we go to Trail, there's no jury! we haven't went to court yet. The only person I can see going to court is me and him, cause i don't have a clue whats going on. What I do know is am still under my doctors care hadn't work none of 2010 been off work doctor's order for a whole year, my next evaluation is Jan. 31, 2011. And am suppose to accept 2, 000 his first offer which I didn't accept and his next offer was 4, 000 . And his amount was 5, 000 and something so the more he claims he's getting for me he's profit is much higher. Now what Planet are they living on. like I said before Nothing Make Sense

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  • Lo
    lolou Feb 11, 2012

    It's too bad for everyone that this had to happen. Everyone that truly deserves a large enough settlement doesn't get it and the people that make fake claims and overinflated claims get taken care of better.
    The whole system is messed up. I used my 4 weeks of vacation for 4 years while my case was being settled and this time was ONLY used sporatically over the years for days of suffering and they are not going to pay me for lost wages? I cannot afford to lose my career that pays in a year twice what the TOP Supposed settlement would be on a grand day? It's a messed up system, period.

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  • De
    DeAnne Girton Mar 14, 2012

    I say stick with the ones who have been in the business LONG before all of this started going on. The Becker Law Office. They were the pioneers of attorney television advertising, yes, but not the pioneers of taking all of their client's money.

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  • I personally knew Richard Mulholland. He was devastated that such a criminal act was occurring in his firm by three people he trained, mentored and trusted.
    What P.O.S all three are.
    When I see their commercial it makes me ill.
    This shows you their integrity!
    R.I.P Richard Mulholland you were respected, admired and loved by many.
    I hope W&Y gets what's coming to them. Karma is a B!

    1 Votes
  • Bl
    Blake Daniel May 16, 2019

    I had actually went to https://www.wintersandyonker.com/ recently and called them. We met and they handled my case with a success. Sad that this ever happen, they are really good people!

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