Equal law is provided for all. It’s not supposed to be based on class or politics. My job is to make sure all are provided the same equal law, and I’m not stopping until it is.
Thomas O. Sinclair
Tom is a Birmingham native who spent time at a military boarding school for high school before enlisting in the military when he was eighteen. After six years traveling the world, he decided that college may not be a bad idea after all.
Somewhere in that ten-year span of military life where orders were not to be questioned it occurred to him; understanding the law, and the reasons for the law being what it is, would mean he would no longer be obliged to take someone else’s word for what the law was. He could finally question orders. Thus, in his exit interview with some senior enlisted Marines Tom pronounced (much to the crowd’s amusement) that he would not being re-enlisting but would instead become a lawyer.
Tom enrolled at the University of Alabama where during his intake interview with the career counselors he pronounced he was intending on graduating in three years instead of four (again much to the crowd’s amusement). When asked why on Earth he wanted to do that, he announced simply, I do not want to pay you for 4 years.
Tom put himself through college in three years working many, many jobs. From punching a time clock at a job at a box factory making popcorn boxes on the swing shift (11pm to 7am) to working at the local VA caring for disabled veterans, he began to appreciate the impact of the law on every facet of our society.
Following graduation, he briefly served as a loan officer in the finance industry before applying to attend law school. In 1996, he was honored to receive the Harwell G. Davis Presidential Scholarship to attend Cumberland School of Law at Samford University and started law school that same year.
During his time in law school, Tom worked several jobs. He started a clerking service business in his second year of law school and contracted with various law firms in the state for projects. He then hired his fellow classmates to work for him and complete those projects. Before he graduated law school, he had managed to not only put himself through law school, but he had also hired more than 200 of his classmates and other law students in various law schools around the state.
While in law school he served on the Moot Court Board, Trial Court Board, was elected by his classmates to serve as an Honor Court Justice, and received an award for best oral argument competing against teams from across the nation in a National Moot Court Competition. Tom graduated from Cumberland Law School in 1999.
Tom then started his practice of law by representing automotive manufacturers and insurance companies. In those two years, he met many fascinating people, tried his first jury trial as lead counsel to a favorable verdict, and was selected by a Fortune 5 company to serve in a national counsel role in State and Federal Courts leading litigation in 12 states. But Tom quickly learned his passion wasn’t defending corporations, it was helping the People. So, he joined a firm serving people and never looked back.
Tom now devotes 100% of his practice to representing the People in litigation involving insurance and pension claims governed by ERISA and various states’ laws. He has served clients from Hawaii to Israel and nearly all points between. His past service includes court appointments to serve as lead class counsel for more than one hundred thousand individuals. He has appeared in state and federal courthouses from New York to California.
Tom is frequently asked to speak at seminars for other attorneys and regularly contributes his time to public interest cases. He is the author of several articles on ERISA and Individual Disability Income Insurance claims.
- Professional and Executive Disability Claims
- ERISA Claims
- Insurance Litigation
- Life and Accidental Death Insurance Claims
- Class Actions
- Pension and Retirement Claims
- Healthcare Claims
- Top Hat Plans
- Alabama Supreme Court, 1999
- U.S. District Court, Middle District of Alabama, 1999
- U.S. District Court, Northern District of Alabama, 2000
- U.S. District Court, Southern District of Alabama, 2000
- U.S. Court of Appeals, Eleventh Circuit, 2003
- U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Tennessee, 2004
- U.S. District Court, Northern District of Florida, 2008
- U.S. Court of Appeals, Sixth Circuit, 2008
- U.S. Court of Appeals, Fifth Circuit, 2012
- U.S. Court of Appeals, Second Circuit, 2013
- U.S. Supreme Court, 2014
- New York
- North Carolina
- University of Alabama, Tuscaloosa, Alabama, Bachelor of Science in Commerce and Business Administration with distinction, (1995), selected as the Most Outstanding Undergraduate (Finance and Economics)
- Cumberland School of Law, Samford University, Juris Doctor (1999), Trial and Moot Court Teams, Honor Court Justice, Harwell G. Davis Presidential Scholarship Recipient.
The United States Marine Corps 1985-1991
- Alabama Association for Justice (Board Member, Executive Committee, Sustaining Member, Small Firm Section Chair, Employment Law Section Chair, Legislative Committee, AAJ Journal Committee)
- Alabama State Bar Association (Insurance Committee)
- Birmingham Bar Association (Continuing Legal Education Committee)
- American Bar Association, Litigation Section
- American Association for Justice (ERISA Benefits Litigation Group)
- Cumberland Alumni Association (Birmingham Area, Young Alumni President 2000- 2005)
- Member of the Insurance Benefits Committee of the Alabama State Bar
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