Rigsby sisters’ D.C. attorneys withdraw from Renfroe case, cite lack of ability to pay

In the Renfroe v. Rigsby case in Alabama, the Rigsby sisters have been represented by attorneys from three firms, two from Alabama and one from Washington, D.C., all paid for by Dickie Scruggs.  The D.C. lawyers have now filed a motion to withdraw from the case for the following reason (I inserted the boldface to highlight the really significant part):

This motion to withdraw is the result of the inability of the Rigsbys and others to pay Zuckerman Spaeder LLP’s fees and expenses going forward, or to adequately satisfy existing fee and expense obligations.

"And others"?  That can only be Dickie Scruggs.  Is this criminal prosecution of Scruggs and his involvement in the Renfroe suit, the Rigsby False Claims Act lawsuit and other stuff tapping out even Scruggs’ mighty wallet?  Mike Moore and that other passel of lawyers for Zach aren’t cheap, I’m sure, and Scruggs himself is not out of the woods on the Wilson case. 



Filed under Industry Developments

14 Responses to Rigsby sisters’ D.C. attorneys withdraw from Renfroe case, cite lack of ability to pay

  1. ThirdSouth

    This motion suggests to me that the poor Rigsby Sisters — honest, virtuous, high principled, decent,civic minded, innocent blowers — were lured by the King of Torts into a $300,000 a year consulting agreement (for life, I think one of them testified), and then dropped like hot potatoes when the going got dicey. How could a man still sitting on millions just cut them off like that? What about the rest of the Scruggs Katrina Group co-conspirators and joint venturers? Have they no shame?

  2. some lawyer

    I’m pretty sure the only SKG member who ever paid the Rigsbys was Scruggs. And now he doesn’t need them any more.

  3. Underdog

    Thirdsouth, I assume you were being facetious when calling the Rigsby sisters “honest, virtuous, high principled, decent,civic minded, innocent blowers”. If they truly were outraged by the alleged fraud and corruption they witnessed, they wouldn’t have to be lured with $150,000 salaries into blowing the whistle. If the company I work for was doing anything criminal, you can bet I’d be the first one calling up law enforcement officials. It wouldn’t occur to me to call the local ambulance chaser, however famous and sweet talkin’ he might be, and apply for a job with a resume made of thousands of stolen documents. Call me old fashioned, but I don’t need to be paid to help prevent wrongdoing.

  4. ThirdSouth

    You got it right, Underdog. The sisters are, in my opinion, as honest, virtuous,high principled, decent,civic minded and innocent as Steve and Debbie Patterson, who were smacked in the face by all this sordid mess on their way back –last Fall — from a deeply restorative retreat in the Holy Land.

  5. tsetse

    underdog: thank you. well put. it doesn’t appear that scourge ever cared one whit about honoring any agreement, verbal or written, to pay those he promised to pay — for whatever reason. the list of folks wishing they’d never met the man is growing. but, as mike moore just said, scourge is a wonderful man who made one unfortunate mistake. do these guys really think we’re duped?


    It appears the insurance agents have come out to play tonight. I still wonder why Renfroe paid them only $150,000 per year. I had 5 insurance agents living within a mile of my home making $250,000 plus. Anybody want to guess what Lecky makes?

  7. Amazed

    Scruggs not paying lawyers he hired? Does this have a familiar ring to it?

  8. Nomiss

    Perhaps Mike Moore thinks the only mistake is getting caught. If you don’t get caught, it’s not a mistake.

  9. Oaege

    Cowbell, I’d be willing to wager that the insurance agents you reference actually WORK in a day (or two) more than the Rigbys did for the entire time period they “worked” for SKG.


    Oaege: you would win that bet. The agents are fantastic salesmen. Very cordial and efficient, always willing to speak to the local civic groups, and maybe sponsor a local little league team. But not a single one I know handled any homeowners’ claims after Katrina. Renfroe and Pilot were given the task. This is the practice of all Big Insurance so they can “fire” the adjuster who balks. And it did bother me that the Sisters were on D.S.’s payroll and had no duties. I thought they would have at least been reviewing all case files, including those they didn’t handle, as experts in the field of managing adjusters for State Farm for 8 years.

  11. xmarksx

    Cowbell –
    Not that I disagree with everything you say about agents, however, having agents handle homeowners claims? The last think I want is to have my agent climing on my roof after a storm.
    “This is the practice of all Big Insurance so they can ‘fire’ the adjuster who balks.” Those automatronic adjusters and the poor homeless adjusters who balked.

  12. David Rossmiller

    More Cowbell, contract CAT workers like the Rigsby sisters are in a position to make a lot more when some major storm hits like Katrina. People like Lecky King make far less. If you have any evidence to the contrary, I’d be interested in seeing it.


    My insurance adjusters (and engineers) didn’t climb on my roof. Went up in the attic and looked around. Never saw an adjuster with a ladder on a Tahoe in my neighborhood. Yes, Lecky and the Sisters are paid a set salary, regardless of the severity of the season. The “roving” adjusters can make a windfall (hehe) after a major event.

  14. Staff adjusters and staff managers are paid an annual salary supplemented by per diem and a daily cat pay when out on the road by carriers. Independent adjusters are not paid a salary-they are paid either a daily rate of pay (flat daily rate) when working an in office assignment ,management, or on clean up for a carrier but during the initial phase of storm assignments are paid on a gross amount of loss fee schedule or a component based fee schedule (so much for roof inspect/so much for interior inspect,etc)depending on the practice of the particular carrier. Rigsbys were independent managers versus independent adjusters thus most likely were paid on a fixed daily rate for each day of assignment on the storm. Independents also do not normally receive per diem as staff adjusters do towards meals and temporary housing. One of the Rigsby’s depositions she discussed her pay as such as well when discussing the carrier division manager releasing her after she put them on notice of reporting the “allegations” to attorneys and authorities. It will never be understood by those of us in claims why they did not utilize the carrier’s well published 1-800 hotline for reporting suspected employee problems as they alleged. Her story in one of the depositions (of 11/16 I believe it was in the Renfroe vs Rigsby case) makes no sense to those of us in claims. She stated in her deposition that Renfroe’s did nothing wrong and their reasons for not reporting the engineer report problems to them were VERY WEAK. Note that at 150K salary by Scruggs, this on average would be MUCH MORE than most independent managers make on average. For instance, the past two years when they were making the Scruggs money, the majority of independents have been home with no income absent hurricanes in 06/07 so they were far ahead of the average independent manager sitting at home. The amount of income they could potentially make on the RICO case is unbelievable and we still don’t know how that one will be resolved.