The SE Texas Record May 24, 2016, 9:29am


Gang, gang, the hail's all here,

Never mind the weather, we'll get rich together;

Gang, gang, the hail's all here,

Sure we're glad that we can sue!

Who gets excited at the sight of a hail storm? You recognize it as a hazard to life and property and do what you can to minimize its impact.

There's a gang of storm-chasing lawyers here in southeast Texas, however, whose members delight in hail storms. For them, hail from the sky is like dollars from heaven--not pennies--when it's big enough and lasts long enough to cause lots of damage.

Not that there needs to be a lot of damage – the extent of it and the lawsuit claims have been known to be inflated – but still, the more actual damage, the better. It gives the gang something to build on.

The leader of the gang is that jolly good fellow Steve Mostyn, admired by like-minded attorneys for his audacity and incorrigibility.

During a recent four-day period, there were 113 storm lawsuits filed in Webb County, the majority by the Mostyn Law Firm.

On one of those days, Mostyn was in court trying to show cause why he should not be sanctioned for repeatedly bringing factually unsupported storm claims.

In March, when she granted a State Farm motion for summary judgment in a hail suit, U.S. District Judge Micaela Alvarez reminded Mostyn that claims must be supported by evidence and that sanctions can be imposed for failure to provide such evidence.

In April, Judge Alvarez again granted State Farm summary judgment in a separate hail suit and called for a hearing to show cause why Mostyn shouldn't be sanctioned.

At that hearing, after receiving a tongue-lashing from the judge, Mostyn assured Alvarez that he would clean up his act.

Within 24 hours of that hearing, Mostyn filed 35 lawsuits against Texas insurers. That should give some idea of how remorseful he is.

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