Natural Disasters

Dale Felton: Texas Lawyers' Facebook friend

  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  • Print.
man smiling

Dale Felton. Photo courtesy of the Felton Law Firm.

Dale Felton is a semi-retired Texas plaintiffs lawyer of some distinction, particularly as an insurance law expert in car and truck crashes. In one case, Arnold v. National County Mutual Fire Insurance Co., he prompted the state supreme court to create bad-faith law, though the opinion calls it the “duty of good faith and fair dealing.”

Felton has been a breakout star on the Texas Lawyers Facebook page, known to members as TL, even before the flooding of Hurricane Harvey. In 2008, a friend pulled him away from semi-retirement to take about 60 flood claims resulting from Hurricane Ike. Felton studied flood insurance, spending 21 days straight in a law library to learn about federal common law.

He shared tips, insights and advice about flood insurance claims on TL after Harvey. Those included: federal court only, and no jury trials; no provision for attorney fees (the client can’t be made fully whole if the lawyer gets paid, but something is better than nothing); flood claims have a very strict timeline, and Felton determined nine different possible ones with Harvey, recommending the earliest.

“I told everybody to be on the safe side for right now, until FEMA’s director resolves that ambiguity,” Felton, a longtime Houston resident now living in tiny Navasota, says in an interview.

As the membership and page views grew at TL during and after the storm, so did Felton’s reputation within the group.

“Some of his posts are like CLE courses,” says Andrew Tolchin, who created the Facebook page in 2014.

Andrew Weisblatt, a Houston business attorney, reposted a number of Felton’s offerings. “They were just so authoritative and so full of what people desperately needed,” he says.

Disaster Response Resources
ABA Resources

ABA Committee on Disaster Response and Preparedness

ABA YLD Disaster Legal Services Program

ABA LPD Disaster Resources

Volunteering Opportunities

Florida attorneys can visit the Florida Bar Foundation to find post-storm volunteer opportunities for legal aid and pro bono attorneys, or visit Florida Pro Bono Matters.

North Carolina attorneys can find info on volunteering on the North Carolina Bar's Hurricane Florence page.

South Carolina attorneys can volunteer for the South Carolina Bar's disaster relief legal service hotline by filling out this form.

Not licensed in those states but looking to donate your time or money? Check out ambar.org/DisasterRelief.

ABA Journal Coverage
February 2018 cover.
Hurricane Heroes: From the February 2018 issue
Legal community meets relief challenges after hurricanes Harvey and Irma
ABA mobilizes aid to Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands
Lessons from Katrina
Social media unites lawyers to help those in need

hand holding briefcase with a disaster symbol
Podcast: Disaster response attorneys share tips



For our latest natural disaster coverage, click here.

Disaster Helplines

The Disaster Distress Helpline (DDH) is a national hotline dedicated to providing year-round disaster crisis counseling. This toll-free, multilingual, crisis support service is available 24/7 via telephone (1-800-985-5990) and SMS (text 'TalkWithUs' to 66746) to residents in the U.S. and its territories who are experiencing emotional distress related to natural or man-made disasters.

For low-income individuals with disaster-related legal needs, the following phone numbers are available:
North Carolina residents: 1-833-242-3549
South Carolina residents: 1-877-797-2227 ext. 120
Virginia residents: 1-804-775-0808 in the Richmond area, or 1-800-552-7977.
Florida residents: 1-866-550-2929.


We welcome your comments, but please adhere to our comment policy and the ABA Code of Conduct.

Commenting is not available in this channel entry.