Injured seaman sues attorney, alleging professional negligence

By The Madison County Record | Mar 24, 2015

A Jonesboro man filed suit against his former attorney alleging breach of contract in a previous case dating to 2006.

Russell Johnson Jr. sued John P. Womick and Womick Law Firm, Chartered of Fairview Heights on March 5 in St. Clair County Circuit Court, alleging legal malpractice.

Johnson was injured while working for his employer Missouri Barge Line Company Inc. on Nov. 10, 2006. He hired the defendant on or about Sept. 29, 2007 to investigate and recover his benefits for his injury claim, the suit states.

Womick first acted on Johnson’s behalf in Aug. 2008, alleging that the employer negligently failed to provide a trained crew and created a risk of injury by requiring Johnson to perform hazardous tasks. In that suit, Johnson cited back injuries, disability, lost wages and earning capacity, and medical expenses.

The plaintiff claims in his new suit that Womick failed to follow through with discovery and other court requirements, and failed to communicate with the plaintiff. Consequently, Johnson’s case was dismissed; furthermore, Womick allegedly failed to re-file the case within the one-year allowable time period, the suit states.

Johnson seeks damages in excess of $50,000, plus attorneys’ fees and costs. 

He is represented in the case by D. Jeffrey Ezra of Collinsville.

St. Clair County Circuit Court case number: 15-L-131

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