Woman claims attorney submitted BP oil spill claim without consent

David Yates Jun. 5, 2012, 4:15am

The Eagle Otome tanker and barges collided in the Sabine Neches Waterway in January 2010.

Nederland resident Maxie Nguyen is suing Robert A. McAllister Jr. and Associates PC, alleging the law firm submitted a BP oil spill claim on her behalf without consent, taking attorney's fees out of the award and asserted liens for damages.

The suit was filed June 1 in Jefferson County District Court.

According to the lawsuit, on Jan. 24, 2010, the Eagle Otome Tanker collided with a barge, releasing approximately 462,000 gallons of oil into the Sabine Neches Waterway in Port Arthur. Nguyen contracted the Houston law firm to represent her for damages related to the incident.

On April 20, 2010, the BP Deepwater Horizon Oil Rig exploded. Nguyen did not sign a new contract with the firm or modify her existing contract.

"Upon information and belief, plaintiff alleges that defendant took the documentation provided as part of the Sabine Spill litigation and submitted them to the funds set up to compensate victims of the Deepwater Spill," the suit states.

"Plaintiff was not informed and did not consent the defendant's representation ... for damages from the Deepwater Spill, prior to the submission of the documentation."

The suit goes on to state that the firm did recover funds for Nguyen and took attorney's fees out of the money and has since asserted liens against Nguyen's recovery for damages related to the Deepwater Spill.

Nguyen is asking the court to declare that the firm is not entitled to any future settlement funds related to the Deepwater Spill.

Beaumont attorney Brent Coon is representing her.

Judge Bob Wortham, 58th District Court, is assigned to the case.

Case No. A192-518

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