Texas company promises to help local citizens participate in lawsuit

Cars and residents gather outside a tax service company to talk to a Texas-based company about a MDL lawsuit.

By Bonnie Culverhouse

For the second time in as many weeks, a Houston, Texas-based company has been in Minden to gather signatures for a Mass District Litigation (MDL) lawsuit allegedly against Southwestern Electric Power Company.

Temporarily headquartering in a Shreveport Road tax business, Texans Helping Texans Recovery Fund is asking anyone who possibly suffered some type of loss during the winter storm of February 2021, to sign over their right to sue for that loss.

“We don’t know how it works,” said one woman leaving the building. “It’s some kind of recovery thing. We just know we’re supposed to go to city hall and get a printout of our February 2021 electric bill.”

Persons in line waiting to get into the building were asked to pay $10 and complete a specific form to be considered for the lawsuit. The form reads: “We can’t guarantee a favorable outcome even though there is absolutely no out of pocket cost to you.”

There is also no guarantee the residents’ $10 will be refunded if they are not approved for the suit.

Listed on the form are loss of food in refrigerator or deep freeze, pipes burst that caused damages in specific rooms of the house, ceiling repairs, roof damage, days and wages lost at work and other losses.

The company’s website has the following description of what is expected of the signee.

“Assigning your claim means that you are selling Texans Helping Texans the right to sue for your loss. In exchange for 50 percent of the net proceeds, you agree not to pursue independent legal action on your claim and instead allow us to fight the legal battle,” the website declares.

“Assign your claim to CirclesX and we’ll work to help you recover up to half of your uninsured losses,” it continues. “CirclesX is a leading data firm with decades of expertise focused specifically on energy markets. Armed with mountains of high-grade data amassed through our patented technologies, we team with top legal experts to fight your claim. When you trust your claim to CirclesX, we pay all the legal costs on your behalf, and if a settlement is reached you get 50 percent of the net outcome. There is absolutely no risk to you, and you could get back a lot of the money that’s rightfully yours. There’s no out of pocket downside, only upside.”

A SWEPCO spokesperson said he has never heard of the company, and any potential lawsuits would be with the City of Minden rather than his company, since there is a contract between the two.

Minden Mayor Tommy Davis said he was made aware of the group around two weeks ago when they first came to the area.

“They were only here one day. Then, apparently they came back again Friday,” Davis said. “I don’t have any information on it, but we are trying to find out what we can.”

Webster Parish Journal attempted to contact Texans Helping Texans Recovery Fund by phone and email requesting more information. Our phone call was not returned, however, the following email was sent:

“This email address has been temporarily cancelled.  If you have sent any information to this email after September 16, 2022, it was deleted.  We will not be calling anyone from those applications. We are located at the following address for processing applications this week. Tammy’s Fast Tax Services, 640 Shreveport Rd, Minden, LA 71055, Thursday 9am -5pm, Friday 9am – noon. You must have an appointment or you may drop off your application. For appointment please call (318) 382-4464. – Texans Helping Texans Appointment.”

Then, we received a second email, which consisted of one unsigned sentence:

“I will send you the event dates as soon as we get them.”

(Editor’s note: This story will continue as more details become available.)