The OPEA has hired a new law firm to represent the association. At the June meeting, the Board of Directors agreed to hire Fellers Snider Attorneys and Counselors at Law, and a new contract went into effect July 1.
“We are looking forward to beginning this new partnership,” OPEA Executive Director Sterling Zearly said. “While legal matters are not something we look forward to, an association like OPEA must have competent attorneys with whom we can collaborate.”
Fellers Snider has been a frontrunner in the legal field since 1963, representing clients on a local, regional and national level. The company has garnered numerous awards, and their attorneys have been selected in the legal profession.
“Our firm has a varied field of expertise,” Fellers Snider attorney Kevin Donelson said. “We will work together with OPEA and its members, ensuring their objectives and goals are not just met, but in fact exceeded in a cost-effective and efficient manner.”
OPEA’s law firm will provide the following services to OPEA members:
- The firm will agree to represent a member in hearings before the Oklahoma Merit Protection Commission after a request for representation has been approved by OPEA’s Legal Advocacy Committee. Such appeals will include discharge, suspension without pay, involuntary demotion, and other types of appeals scheduled for hearing by the Commission. Representation will include the filing and defense of any petition for reconsideration filed on behalf of the member with the Commission.
- The firm will provide initial consultation on any legal matter, at no charge to the member. Such consultation may be made by the member calling 1-800-311-9771.
- The firm will provide legal representation to the member in worker’s compensation cases on a no recovery – no fee basis. Attorney fees awarded by the worker’s compensation court will be reduced by 10 percent and such reduction will be paid to the member.
- The firm will represent the member in personal injury cases when approved by the firm on a no recovery – no fee basis.
- The firm will provide a reduced hourly rate of $150 – $200 for all other types of legal work for which the firm is retained by members.
- The firm will prepare a basic will at a flat fee of $200 to be paid by the member.
A member is defined as a person employed by the state of Oklahoma who: has transmitted a properly completed membership application to OPEA at least 180 days prior to such member seeking legal services under the terms of the contract and has arranged for the payment of membership dues to OPEA continuously during such 180 day period; or is a retired state employee who continues to be a member of OPEA; or who is the spouse or child under 18 years of age of a member and currently resides in the member’s home.