Sawaya Law Firm changes name, denies assault claims played a role

Johnnie Pratt

Soon after 45 many years in existence — throughout which it has developed to be a single of the state’s greatest individual injury firms — the Sawaya Law Agency adjusted its identify Sunday.

The modify completes the firm’s shift absent from the now-retired Michael Sawaya, its well-recognised founder, at a time when he is being accused in a lawsuit of sexually assaulting and sexually battering a consumer in his office. Sawaya has denied the allegations.

As of New Year’s Working day, the Sawaya Regulation Business is now the Wilhite Law Business. Its new namesake, Robert Wilhite, is the company’s majority proprietor.

“Aside from our name, the rest of the management, staff and staff members will keep on being in location,” the business said in a statement posted to its social media accounts. “Meaning, you can be assured that the determination we make to our group will keep on being our best precedence.”

The assertion mentioned that the agency is grateful to Sawaya “for the firm’s solid basis and the legacy he left when he retired after a extensive career advocating for wounded Coloradans. We are thrilled to have on that basis and legacy as we shift ahead.”

A spokesperson for the Wilhite Regulation Firm mentioned that Sawaya offered his shares in the company on June 1, 2021, and has not represented the firm’s shoppers due to the fact. The spokesperson claimed accusations versus Sawaya played no job in the firm’s determination to rename by itself.

“Discussions about altering the name to align the firm with the Wilhite Regulation Firm’s existing company in Dallas began using position soon following the organization was acquired by Robert Wilhite in June 2021,” in accordance to the spokesperson.

But Sawaya remained a face of the agency following that purchase and until the lawsuit.

In April 2022, pics of the lawyer have been well known on SawayaLaw.com, which stays the firm’s area title, as noticed in monitor shots saved by a web site archive. Sawaya and Wilhite stood facet by side in a substantial photo at the leading of the site. Sawaya also appeared below the “Meet Our Team” segment and again at the base, in a group image of associates.

By May, he had been erased from the notable image at the top rated of the web page and from the “Meet Our Team” segment but nonetheless appeared in the group photograph. Two months later, he was sued by the former customer. By June 8, his impression was scrubbed solely from the residence web site.

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