Two law firms with experience in the lodging industry are teaming up to support hotel owners in the wake of massive destruction caused by flooding and winds from hurricanes Harvey and Irma. Texas-based Patel Gaines and Florida-based Farrell & Patel are working together to ensure that hoteliers receive just and fair treatment of their property damage claims by the insurance industry.
“Each of our firms has done huge amounts of work in the hospitality industry,” said Rahul Patel, managing partner of Patel Gaines. “I literally grew up in my parents’ hotels. Our two law practices are very involved with the Asian American Hotel Owners Association (AAHOA) and the Texas Hotel & Lodging Association, among others. So, we’re keenly aware of the legal and insurance issues so many in the industry are now facing. They know us and our track record well.”
Ricky Patel and Wesley Farrell, partners at Farrell & Patel, represented more than 3,000 hospitality clients affected by the 2010 BP oil drilling platform disaster in the Gulf of Mexico. In turn, Ricky Patel received the AAHOA Chairman’s Award for leadership and ongoing services. Farrell & Patel is recognized as a Platinum Founding Member of AAHOA.
“The insurance industry is going to do everything it possibly can to avoid their obligations and reduce their payments on legitimate claims to the lowest amounts they can get away with,” said Ricky Patel. “Our job is to watch out for the livelihoods of the thousands of hotel owners–and their employees–who are trying to get back on their feet. We’re going to fight very hard for their interests. And we’ve proven we know how to win.”
Ricky Patel also is extremely active in numerous philanthropic projects. As vice chairman of the Miami Children’s Health Foundation, he’s donated more than $1.8 million to the foundation since 2010. He also started an orphanage in Haiti for 38 children who lost their parents in Hurricane Matthew and makes frequent visits to bring supplies to the home, among many other community projects he supports financially and as a volunteer.
Patel Gaines recently rounded up several truckloads of household necessities and emergency supplies and delivered them to Rockport, Texas, a small fishing and tourism town on the middle Texas coast. Rockport suffered a direct hit from Hurricane Harvey’s first landfall, which destroyed much of the town and surrounding areas.
Farrell & Patel’s offices are in Miami, Tampa, Houston and Puerto Rico. Patel Gaines’ offices are in San Antonio and Fort Worth.