Whitburn & Pevsner, PLLC

Whitburn & Pevsner, PLLC Whitburn & Pevsner, PLLC is a law firm located in Arlington, Texas, Our focus includes: commercial litigation, ERISA, education, ADA, guardianship/probate, personal injury, wills, trusts, family law, criminal justice, and civil rights.
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Whitburn & Pevsner, PLLC is a law firm located in Arlington, Texas, and serving clients in Mansfield, Texas, in Arlington, in Tarrant County in general, as well as in north and central Texas. Our attorneys place top priority on our clients’ interests by providing high quality representation ranging from navigating complex litigation in both state and federal courts to handling ERISA matters. Our focus includes: commercial litigation, ERISA, education, ADA, guardianship/probate, personal injury, wills, trusts, family law, criminal justice, and civil rights. The attorneys establishing this firm sought to combine both professional and personal experience to ensure the most effective representation for our clients. Our lawyers include a successful litigator who has handled a great diversity of cases, first as an attorney with Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher, LLP, one of the world’s leading business law firms, and then fighting for civil liberties as an attorney for the American Civil Liberties Union of Texas. The other founders of Whitburn & Pevsner, PLLC, before ever becoming experienced attorneys themselves, spent many years advocating for their own rights and for those of others, as individuals with physical disabilities. At Whitburn & Pevsner, PLLC, we offer our experience and passion as lawyers to serve our clients with consummate professionalism at a reasonable rate. If you feel that you have a matter that needs to be resolved in the legal arena, whether civil or criminal, or if you require legal services in any of our areas of practice, please feel free to contact us at (817) 592-3488 or Whitburn & Pevsner, PLLC, 2000 E. Lamar Boulevard, Suite 600, Arlington, Texas 76006. Practice Areas At Whitburn & Pevsner, PLLC, we practice in a wide variety of areas, reflecting our diverse talents. From Special Education to Commercial Litigation, our attorneys provide high quality legal representation with consummate professionalism. Regardless of practice area, we hold ourselves to the highest standards. Antidiscrimination Disability Rights Laws Employment Title I of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) prohibits private entities from committing employment discrimination against people based on disability. Under the ADA, these entities must provide reasonable job accommodations to their employees and applicants with disabilities upon request. Title I of the ADA only covers private entities with 15 or more employees. If you believe a private entity has discriminated against you due to your disability or has failed to provide reasonable job accommodations, we can assess your case to determine its merit. If we determine that you have a strong case, then we can offer the following services: • Sending a demand letter to an entity requesting an amicable solution to the issue at hand. • Filing an EEOC complaint on clients’ behalf (claimants are required to file an EEOC complaint before filing an ADA employment lawsuit in court). • Filing a lawsuit in court on behalf of clients. • Representing clients in any mediation, negotiations or settlement talks. Title II of the ADA covers governmental entities such as the states and local municipalities. The Federal Government is not covered under the ADA. Section 504 of the Rehabilitation of 1973 covers the Federal Government. Section 504 has the same legal requirements as the ADA. Our services are the same as with Title I cases. Education Special Education Under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), independent public school districts must provide a Free Appropriate Public Education (FAPE) to students with disabilities. In providing FAPE, school districts have a legal obligation to provide support services such as paraprofessionals, assistive technology, and physical and occupational therapies to assist students with disabilities in obtaining an appropriate education. Districts also must provide reasonable academic accommodations and make their facilities wheelchair accessible. Our services include: • Representing students and their parents in Due Process Hearings, mediations and, if necessary, in federal court. • Assisting clients in finding qualified experts to perform evaluations to determine the appropriate support services & academic accommodations which districts must provide. • Filing ADA violations complaints with the Department of Justice & the Department of Education. • Attending ARD meetings and assisting in crafting individualized educational plans. • Mentoring students with disabilities by educating them on how to best assert their rights and participate in creating their educational plans. Postgraduate Education Title II of the ADA and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 prohibit public higher education institutions from discriminating against qualified students with disabilities by providing reasonable accommodations to and making their facilities accessible for people with disabilities. Our services are similar to those under IDEA cases. Public Accommodations Title III of the ADA requires private entities, both large and small companies, to make their facilities and services accessible to people with disabilities. Unlike Title I, Title III covers all private entities regardless of the number of employees that the companies might have on staff. If you believe a private entity has discriminated against you by failing to make its facilities and/or services accessible, then we can assess your particular case for merit. If we find that it has merit, we can offer the following services: • Conducting accessibility surveys to determine if a given entity is compliant with the ADA Accessibility Guidelines (ADAAG). • Sending a demand letter requesting that a particular entity comply with ADAAG. • Filing a formal complaint with the Department of Justice. • Filing a lawsuit against the noncompliant entity. • Representing clients in mediations, negotiations and courts. Housing The federal Fair Housing Act and Texas Fair Housing Act prohibit disability discrimination in the renting and selling of housing. Under these laws, both public and private entities in the housing industry must make reasonable modifications to their policies, practices and services to ensure equal access to people with disabilities. Landlords must allow renters with disabilities to make reasonable accessibility modifications to the housing premises. These modifications must be at the renters’ expense. If you believe that an entity covered by these laws has discriminated against you, we can assess your case. If we deem that your case has merit, we can offer the following services: • Conducting accessibility reviews of an entity’s facilities to determine if it is in compliance with Housing and Urban Development administration (HUD) accessibility guidelines. • Sending a demand letter to an entity requesting they comply with the law. • Filing a formal complaint with HUD. • Representing clients in courts at the administrative, state and federal levels. Probate Work Wills We can draft wills of any type. From simple wills for individuals to complex wills for couples, we can tailor your will to meet your unique wishes and needs. With a properly drafted will, you can ensure that your estate and cherished possessions get distributed to your loved ones and friends. If you have minor children or mentally incapacitated family members, you can designate a guardian for them in your will in the event they survive you. Trusts We assist people in establishing trusts. There are different types of trusts which people can use to control their money and property. The two main trusts that we draft are the following: • Special Needs Trusts: These trusts are available to people with disabilities who have income from a personal injury lawsuit or some other source that disqualifies them from receiving government benefits such as SSI and Medicaid. When determining the eligibility of individuals with disabilities for benefits, the government cannot consider any money or property which is in a special needs trust. These individuals can put their income in this trust with a third party serving as trustee. The special needs trust, instead of the individual with a disability, owns all the income and property contained within it, thereby making the individual eligible for governmental assistance. • Spendthrift Trusts: A person (grantor) can create a spendthrift trust containing money and/or property for the benefit of someone else (beneficiary). This type of trust is usually created by a grantor who wants to provide for a beneficiary whom the grantor believe cannot or will not manage the money properly. It usually serves as a safe harbor from the beneficiary’s creditors as well. Guardianships A guardianship may be necessary when a person becomes mentally or physically incapacitated. There are two types of guardianships. Guardianship of the estate is where someone has control of an incapacitated person’s money/property and manages the estate. Guardianship of the person is when a guardian takes custody of the incapacitated person. We can assist in establishing or removing a guardianship. Our approach to guardianships is to find ways to give the proposed ward as much freedom as possible to manage his or her life while at the same time ensuring that his or her best interests are served. Civil Commitments Probate courts usually adjudicate civil commitments. Under Texas law, anyone who is (1) deemed mentally ill by a licensed physician, and (2) as a result of that illness, likely to cause serious harm to himself or to others, can be involuntarily committed to a mental health facility. If a person is involuntarily committed to a mental health facility, the state must hold a due process hearing to show good cause for the commitment. If you, one of your family members or a close friend are going through an involuntarily civil commitment, we can offer the following services: • Reviewing the documentation for the commitment application to ensure that the court is following the proper procedures. • Representing clients in due process hearings. • Assisting clients in obtaining the appropriate mental health and support services. Section 1983 Cases and other Civil Rights Cases We bring civil rights cases against governmental agencies and officials, which are usually Section 1983 cases. These cases may involve unconstitutional treatment of undocumented immigrants, abuses in prisons, unconstitutional discrimination, infringement of free speech, freedom of religion and the press. Commercial Litigation We have substantial experience in federal and state courts across the country in complex commercial litigation of all kinds, including class actions, representing plaintiffs in some cases and defendants in others. ERISA Litigation We have taken lead roles in litigating ERISA cases throughout Texas, sometimes representing plaintiffs and representing defendants at other times. Family Law We can handle family law cases, such as adoptions, divorces, and the like. We handle such matters with extreme sensitivity to the extraordinary stress such cases can bring to the lives of those involved. We work hard to assist our clients in reaching their goals smoothly with as little disruption as possible under the circumstances. Personal Injury Our attorneys have handled personal injury cases in both federal and state court in Texas. We can assist our clients in assessing the merits of their prospective cases, making determinations on how best to pursue proper remedies, and litigating in federal or state court, if litigation proves necessary. Criminal Law In unfortunate circumstances, where individuals need a defense attorney in a criminal matter, we can provide such representation as well. We can assist our clients in determining how best to proceed, in evaluating potential plea arrangements, or, if necessary, in taking a matter to

American Association of People with Disabilities
06/19/2020

American Association of People with Disabilities

Join us for “The Impact of Disability Representation in Office” when Taryn Williams will interview Senator Tammy Duckworth about working on Capitol Hill as a person with a disability and the importance of representation in appointed or elected office. REGISTER to catch this panel during the virtual REV UP Summit June 22 and 23 at bit.ly/AAPDSummit2020! ASL and CC will be provided.

There are already growls...that Texas will have a terrible budget session in 2021...or not! Our friends at Every Texan n...
06/11/2020
Checking in on State Revenue - Every Texan

There are already growls...that Texas will have a terrible budget session in 2021...or not! Our friends at Every Texan nail it here. Texas has a massive Rainy Day fund, is receiving and will receive extra federal funds and can close loopholes and open revenue streams. The call to legislators is to meet the needs of its citizens. Be educated and be prepared.

Making sure every Texan has the tools they need to come through this health and economic crisis must be the top priority of state lawmakers as they make budget decisions. The COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted how vulnerable our state’s already underfunded health care, schools and other critical se...

06/08/2020
Housing Survey 2020

Housing survey: Texas Health and Human Services Commission
(HHSC) seeks input on the current housing situation and housing needs of people with mental health conditions, substance use histories and/or intellectual and developmental disabilities.
HHSC is seeking input from individuals with lived experience, families/caregivers, providers and service agencies and organizations. Your answers will help them understand the need for housing and housing supports across the state and make plans for the future.
Take the survey and share: https://www.surveygizmo.com/s3/5381252/Housing-Survey-2020

Housing Survey 2020.

“I believe all individuals with disabilities, regardless of service and support needs, should be an equal, valued and in...
05/25/2020
Disability rights advocates' online vigil honors 'unseen and unheard' voices

“I believe all individuals with disabilities, regardless of service and support needs, should be an equal, valued and included member of their community,” she said. “That means a home integrated within the community, not segregated behind a locked gate — unseen and unheard.”

North Texas disability rights advocates called for greater autonomy for people with disabilities Saturday evening during a virtual candlelight vigil. The event, titled “Unheard,” also honored the 445 people currently

Disability Community Check In - Mental Health · Texas Democratic Party - Organizing
05/21/2020
Disability Community Check In - Mental Health · Texas Democratic Party - Organizing

Disability Community Check In - Mental Health · Texas Democratic Party - Organizing

The disability community is coming together to take a moment to check in, listen, and support one another during this pandemic. This week we will be talking about our mental health. This is a brave space to share how we have been holding up. This event is part of the "Disability Community Check In"....

Coalition of Texans with Disabilities
05/11/2020

Coalition of Texans with Disabilities

Candace Valenzuela for Congress
05/08/2020

Candace Valenzuela for Congress

One of our guests for this week's town hall will be Val Vera!

Val was the lead organizer of the Disability Rights Rally in Denton, is the co-founder and Executive Director of Disability Inclusion Society, and serves as the Chair of the City of Denton's Committee on Persons with Disabilities.

Val's intersectional experience as a Disabled Latinx, his proven leadership and communication skills, and his ability to create messages has made him an impactful Disability Rights Activist.

To be a part of our conversation and speak with Val, Candace, and our other guests, please sign up at
https://www.mobilize.us/candacefor24/event/271049/

We will also be streaming on Facebook and Twitter Live!

Willie Levi, 73, Dies; He Escaped a Life of Servitude
05/04/2020
Willie Levi, 73, Dies; He Escaped a Life of Servitude

Willie Levi, 73, Dies; He Escaped a Life of Servitude

He was one of a group of men with disabilities who worked for substandard wages at a turkey plant but found justice. He succumbed to the new coronavirus.

A total of 50 DSSLC residents, on top of the 25 employees, have tested positive for the virus as of Friday. The first wa...
04/08/2020
Conflicting accounts from DSSLC: Center expresses confidence, while staff share fears

A total of 50 DSSLC residents, on top of the 25 employees, have tested positive for the virus as of Friday. The first was reported on March 20, although it was not publicly known until March 21, when Denton County Public Health reported a total of four positive cases.

Conflicting accounts about personal protective equipment have surrounded the COVID-19 outbreak at the Denton State Supported Living Center — with some staff expressing continuing concerns about their personal safety.

04/08/2020
Adobe Document Cloud

Please read this letter from Disability Rights Texas to Governor Abbott regarding rationing of medical treatment. It reminds Abbott that it is unlawful to considerate disability when or if medical professionals have to ration treatment.

COVID-19 Waivers – Protect Our Medicaid
04/06/2020
COVID-19 Waivers – Protect Our Medicaid

COVID-19 Waivers – Protect Our Medicaid

As noted on our COVID-19 legislation page, The Families First Act includes a 6.2% increase in federal matching Medicaid funds, which is a good start, but not enough additional Medicaid funding to ensure state Medicaid systems can handle the high health care costs and increased enrollment and need fo...

DRTx is your place to go for COVID-19 disability rights issues - but what about other legal matters? - Disability Rights...
04/05/2020
DRTx is your place to go for COVID-19 disability rights issues - but what about other legal matters? - Disability Rights Texas

DRTx is your place to go for COVID-19 disability rights issues - but what about other legal matters? - Disability Rights Texas

If you are facing disability discrimination during the coronavirus pandemic, you already know Disability Rights Texas is your place to go for legal help. But what about other issues not related to your disability? As the coronavirus pandemic shakes the lives of Texans, causing uncertainty about thei...

Please read this letter from COPAA to Education Secretary Betsy DeVos opposing any waiver of the  mandates of the IDEA a...
04/03/2020
final_copaa_to_ed_on_idea_du.pdf

Please read this letter from COPAA to Education Secretary Betsy DeVos opposing any waiver of the mandates of the IDEA and Section 504.

Shared with Dropbox

04/01/2020
Disability Rights Texas

I worked with Disability Rights Texas from 2005 to 2007 as an Equal Justice Works fellow. They are committed to protecting and enhancing the civil rights of Texans with disabilities. My firm works with DRTx on Olmstead and FHA cases. If you have a family member in Denton State School who would like to get out of the institution, please contact DRTx or my firm. As Wendell Philips, an attorney and abolitionist in the 19th Century said, “[e]ternal vigilance is the price of liberty.”

We protect and advance the legal civil rights of people with disabilities, ensuring they receive the dignity and respect that all people deserve.

To subscribe to our e-newletter, sign up at: https://tinyurl.com/DRTxSubscribe

COVID-19 - Council of Parent Attorneys and Advocates, Inc.
04/01/2020
COVID-19 - Council of Parent Attorneys and Advocates, Inc.

COVID-19 - Council of Parent Attorneys and Advocates, Inc.

The COVID-19 outbreak has placed a tremendous and unprecedented strain on schools, districts, educators, families and students. Despite the unprecedented challenge facing us all, students with disabilities will be best served when diverse stakeholders come together and share resources, innovative id...

Preventing Discrimination in the Treatment of COVID-19 Patients: The Illegality of Medical Rationing on the Basis of Dis...
03/28/2020
Preventing Discrimination in the Treatment of COVID-19 Patients: The Illegality of Medical Rationing on the Basis of Disability

Preventing Discrimination in the Treatment of COVID-19 Patients: The Illegality of Medical Rationing on the Basis of Disability

In the face of a public health crisis, where projections show that the need for intensive medical care for individuals made ill by COVID-19 may far exceed the resources of the U.S. healthcare system, the inclination of healthcare providers may be to take "rationing" measures—or rather, mak

03/27/2020

Please watch Netflix's Crip Camp. It is a great documentary on the disability rights movement. It features disability rights activists such as Judith Heumann. Barack and Michelle Obama produced it. Hooray for Judy and the Obamas!

Disability Rights Film 'Crip Camp' Premieres On Netflix
03/27/2020
Disability Rights Film 'Crip Camp' Premieres On Netflix

Disability Rights Film 'Crip Camp' Premieres On Netflix

An award-winning documentary produced by former President Barack Obama and first lady Michelle Obama centering on the origins of the disability rights movement is making its debut.

e State of Texas wants to shut a lot of Texans with disabilities in Denton State School which already gets investigated ...
03/25/2020
Four cases of COVID-19 confirmed at Denton State School

e State of Texas wants to shut a lot of Texans with disabilities in Denton State School which already gets investigated by DOJ for serious abuse and neglect. This Institution has 4 people infected with coronavirus. Please put pressure on Texas officials to close this institution and provide funding for community-based services.

Four cases of COVID-19 were confirmed Saturday at the Denton State Supported Living Center with one being a case from Friday's update, according to Denton County Public Health.

COPAA, NASDSE, NDRN, National Place Statement on Serving Students with Disabilities During COVID-19 - Council of Parent ...
03/24/2020
COPAA, NASDSE, NDRN, National Place Statement on Serving Students with Disabilities During COVID-19 - Council of Parent Attorneys and Advocates, Inc.

COPAA, NASDSE, NDRN, National Place Statement on Serving Students with Disabilities During COVID-19 - Council of Parent Attorneys and Advocates, Inc.

(WASHINGTON, DC) –The Council of Parent Advocates and Attorneys (COPAA), National Association of State Directors of Special Education (NASDSE), National Disability Rights Network (NDRN) and the National Center for Parent Leadership, Advocacy, and Community Empowerment (National PLACE), stand unifi...

COPAA Statement on ED Supplemental Fact Sheet: Serving Students with Disabilities During COVID-19 - Council of Parent At...
03/23/2020
COPAA Statement on ED Supplemental Fact Sheet: Serving Students with Disabilities During COVID-19 - Council of Parent Attorneys and Advocates, Inc.

COPAA Statement on ED Supplemental Fact Sheet: Serving Students with Disabilities During COVID-19 - Council of Parent Attorneys and Advocates, Inc.

The U.S. Department of Education (ED) has just released Supplemental Fact Sheet Addressing the Risk of COVID-19 in Preschool, Elementary and Secondary Schools While Serving Children with Disabilities. The Council of Parent Attorneys and Advocates (COPAA) appreciates the helpful clarification that ...

City of Bedford, TX-City Services
03/22/2020

City of Bedford, TX-City Services

To mitigate the spread of the COVID-19 virus, Tarrant County Judge Glen Whitley today signed a second amended disaster declaration due to a local health emergency. Go to the Tarrant County website for the complete order which includes a more comprehensive list: https://bit.ly/3bhFFzj

The new restrictions, which go into effect today at 6 p.m., will close in-person worship services but will allow worship support staff to facilitate online services.

The new rules will also close malls and other non-essential retail establishments such as barbershops, hair salons, nail salons as wellness spas and massage parlors.

Essential services such as grocery stores, pharmacies and other establishments that sell household goods will remain open.

In-house dining at restaurants remains closed but drive-in, drive-through, takeout, and delivery are still permitted.

There should be no gatherings of more than 10 people regardless of the situation. There is no distinction between the types of gatherings in the amended declaration.

Updated COVID-19 ALERT - KEEP UP THE PRESSURE - Council of Parent Attorneys and Advocates, Inc.
03/20/2020
Updated COVID-19 ALERT - KEEP UP THE PRESSURE - Council of Parent Attorneys and Advocates, Inc.

Updated COVID-19 ALERT - KEEP UP THE PRESSURE - Council of Parent Attorneys and Advocates, Inc.

As the Council of Parent Attorneys and Advocates, Inc. (COPAA) reported yesterday, negotiations are underway in Congress to provide an additional stimulus package in response to the COVID-19 outbreak. We are actively working on behalf of children with disabilities with Members of Congress and apprec...

Harmony Haus v.  Parkstone Property Owners Homeowners’ Association:  Whitburn & Pevsner, PLLC also prevailed in another ...
03/12/2020
Court of Appeals Decision.pdf

Harmony Haus v. Parkstone Property Owners Homeowners’ Association: Whitburn & Pevsner, PLLC also prevailed in another FHA case on behalf of a sober living group home. The US District Court in the Western District of Texas ruled that the HOA attempted to impose an unlawful restrictive covenant to limit the number of residents in this group. We persuaded the US District Court in the that Harmony Haus could reasonably have 12 residents who are in recovery. https://www.dropbox.com/s/ogo11tabpkheizx/US%20District%20Court%20Decision%20for%20Harmony%20Haus.pdf?dl=0

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2000 E Lamar Blvd, Ste 600
Arlington, TX
76006

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Our Story

Whitburn & Pevsner, PLLC is a law firm located in Arlington, Texas, and serving clients in Mansfield, Texas, in Arlington, in Tarrant County in general, as well as in north and central Texas. Our attorneys place top priority on our clients’ interests by providing high quality representation ranging from navigating complex litigation in both state and federal courts to handling ERISA matters. Our focus includes: commercial litigation, ERISA, education, ADA, guardianship/probate, personal injury, wills, trusts, family law, criminal justice, and civil rights. Mark Whitburn

Mark Whitburn graduated from Yale University with a BA in Philosophy in 1986. He then obtained his PhD in Philosophy from the University of Texas at Austin in 1998. While at UT, Mr. Whitburn won six teaching awards for his classes, including Philosophy of Law, Political Philosophy, and Philosophy of Art. He went on to earn his Doctor of Jurisprudence at the University of Chicago in 2003. At the University of Chicago, Mr. Whitburn was on Law Review and a member of the Order of the Coif.

After graduating from law school, Mr. Whitburn worked for Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher, LLP. During his tenure at Gibson Dunn, he worked on complex litigation such as class action and ERISA cases in both federal and state courts around the country. Mr. Whitburn also distinguished himself as an appellate litigator in the commercial litigation context. He also took pro bono cases involving civil rights. For example, in a case in which the State of Texas refused to provide life-sustaining services to an individual with multiple disabilities at his home, Mr. Whitburn won his summary judgment motion in federal court and a permanent injunction ordering the State to provide these necessary services after all. Mr. Whitburn received the firm's prestigious Frank Wheat Memorial Award for his victory in this case. Additionally, Mr. Whitburn drafted an amicus brief for the ACLU of Texas on behalf of a severely disabled individual sentenced to 100 years in prison, contending that the sentence violated the Eighth Amendment. The sentence was drastically reduced.

Mr. Whitburn left Gibson Dunn & Crutcher in December of 2010 and went on to work with the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) Foundation of Texas, where he was a Senior Staff Attorney and managed the organization’s Racial Justice docket. During his tenure at the ACLU, Mr. Whitburn initiated a lawsuit on behalf of immigrant women who were victims of sexual assault while in the federal government's custody. This case garnered considerable national media attention, and members of Congress cited it in the course of admonishing the federal government to improve its efforts in this area. Mr. Whitburn also took a lead role in a case against a Texas county for failing to conduct indigency hearings before imprisoning teenagers for unpaid fines associated with truancy, a Class C misdemeanor. Mr. Whitburn was responsible for investigating complaints concerning prison and jail conditions, police misconduct, and school-to-prison pipeline issues across the state of Texas.

The Texas Civil Liberties & Civil Rights Section of the State Bar of Texas bestowed on Mr. Whitburn its Wiseman Award for his significant contributions to the civil rights of Texans with disabilities. Mr. Whitburn convinced a US District Court that the State of Texas violated Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act as interpreted in the US Supreme Court’s Olmstead decision. He prevailed in two Fair Housing Act cases against homeowners’ associations. One case involved a group home for people with severe physical and intellectual disabilities. The HOA attempted to shut down this group home by imposing an unlawful restrictive covenant. Mr. Whitburn persuaded a Texas state court of appeals that this restrictive covenant violated both the federal and Texas Fair Housing Acts. Mr. Whitburn also prevailed in another FHA case on behalf of a sober living group home in US District Court. This is the first sober living FHA case that was litigated outside of California.

Sean Pevsner

Sean Pevsner established this law firm with his best friend, Mark Whitburn. They have been best friends since 1986. Mr. Whitburn assisted Mr. Pevsner throughout these years. This firm is one among many goals which they have accomplished together. For more on their story, please visit our news page.

Mr. Pevsner is a University of Texas Law graduate with severe cerebral palsy who operates a motorized wheelchair by the use of head movements. Due to his quadriplegia, he cannot write but must rely on an interpreter or a specialized computer to do his work. People underestimated him from the moment that he was born to the present. He was born clinically dead. The anesthesiologist had to administer CPR for 45 minutes until he could breathe on his own. The anesthesiologist probably was thinking this guy is not going to survive as he was administering the CPR, but Mr. Pevsner proved him wrong after those 45 minutes. Mr. Pevsner has been proving people wrong for 40 plus years. People who were the so called experts said that his life span would be very short. They said he would probably live until he was in his thirties.

These people said that he could not go to a regular school, much less take mainstream classes such as Latin, English literature and calculus. Again, he proved them wrong. His grades were A’s and B’s in these mainstream classes. At the end of his high school in 1990, the Arlington Independent School District (AISD) officials projected that he would graduate ahead of their initial plan for his graduation. Originally, they believed that he would graduate at the age of 22. He graduated at the age of 19 in the top 20% of his high school class. Despite all of these achievements, people did not believe that he could attend a major university like the University of Texas at Austin. At this point, his self advocacy skills automatically went into overdrive whenever someone even mentioned the word “can’t” in the same sentence as his name.

He went on to major in Greek and Latin at UT, while making significant contributions to the university’s community. The UT Classics Department bestowed on him the WJ Battle Award for excellence in Greek and Latin translation. He graduated in 1998, receiving several awards for his advocacy and contributions to the university. Yet, despite these accomplishments, people did not believe that he could go to law school and become a practicing attorney. Once again, Mr. Pevsner proved these people wrong by graduating from UT Law School and gaining admittance to Texas State Bar.

Mr. Pevsner worked with Disability Rights Texas, which is a non-profit organization that protects the civil and human rights of Texans with disabilities through a fellowship sponsored by Equal Justice Works. He assisted people with disabilities in obtaining equal access to education, employment and community services. Mr. Pevsner complemented Advocacy’s services, not only by providing legal assistance to these individuals, but also by teaching them self-advocacy skills.

As part of his Equal Justice Works fellowship project, Mr. Pevsner created the Flexible Interactive Process (FIP) Manual to assist both the employer and employee to have a constructive working relationship. This manual was a part of his Equal Justice Works Project to educate people with disabilities on their rights in the workplace and how they can self-advocate to protect their rights in the community.

Mr. Pevsner's project has broken new ground in that it focused each of its stages on educating students in those skills. His project also focused on ensuring the proper implementation of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) and assisting students with disabilities in taking advantage of the full benefits of this federal law during their secondary education. This project also focused on higher education for people with disabilities. Mr. Pevsner has shown people with disabilities how to employ the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 to ensure their own access to an equal opportunity for higher education.

After leaving Disability Rights Texas, Mr. Pevsner continued to assist others with disabilities. He has assisted clients with cerebral palsy obtain IDEA services by representing them at school, meetings and negotiating with opposing counsel their behalf.

At Whitburn & Pevsner, PLLC, Mr. Pevsner has developed a vibrant special education practice and has worked on other aspects of education law, as well as guardianship and other probate proceedings.

At Whitburn & Pevsner, PLLC, Mr. Whitburn works in all practice areas with a focus on commercial litigation, ERISA, and civil rights matters. At Whitburn & Pevsner, PLLC, we offer our experience and passion as lawyers to serve our clients with consummate professionalism at a reasonable rate. If you feel that you have a matter that needs to be resolved in the legal arena, whether civil or criminal, or if you require legal services in any of our areas of practice, please feel free to contact us at (817) 592-3488 or Whitburn & Pevsner, PLLC, 2000 E. Lamar Boulevard, Suite 600, Arlington, Texas 76006. Practice Areas At Whitburn & Pevsner, PLLC, we practice in a wide variety of areas, reflecting our diverse talents. From Special Education to Commercial Litigation, our attorneys provide high quality legal representation with consummate professionalism. Regardless of practice area, we hold ourselves to the highest standards. Antidiscrimination Disability Rights Laws Employment Title I of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) prohibits private entities from committing employment discrimination against people based on disability. Under the ADA, these entities must provide reasonable job accommodations to their employees and applicants with disabilities upon request. Title I of the ADA only covers private entities with 15 or more employees. If you believe a private entity has discriminated against you due to your disability or has failed to provide reasonable job accommodations, we can assess your case to determine its merit. If we determine that you have a strong case, then we can offer the following services: • Sending a demand letter to an entity requesting an amicable solution to the issue at hand. • Filing an EEOC complaint on clients’ behalf (claimants are required to file an EEOC complaint before filing an ADA employment lawsuit in court). • Filing a lawsuit in court on behalf of clients. • Representing clients in any mediation, negotiations or settlement talks. Title II of the ADA covers governmental entities such as the states and local municipalities. The Federal Government is not covered under the ADA. Section 504 of the Rehabilitation of 1973 covers the Federal Government. Section 504 has the same legal requirements as the ADA. Our services are the same as with Title I cases. Education Special Education Under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), independent public school districts must provide a Free Appropriate Public Education (FAPE) to students with disabilities. In providing FAPE, school districts have a legal obligation to provide support services such as paraprofessionals, assistive technology, and physical and occupational therapies to assist students with disabilities in obtaining an appropriate education. Districts also must provide reasonable academic accommodations and make their facilities wheelchair accessible. Our services include: • Representing students and their parents in Due Process Hearings, mediations and, if necessary, in federal court. • Assisting clients in finding qualified experts to perform evaluations to determine the appropriate support services & academic accommodations which districts must provide. • Filing ADA violations complaints with the Department of Justice & the Department of Education. • Attending ARD meetings and assisting in crafting individualized educational plans. • Mentoring students with disabilities by educating them on how to best assert their rights and participate in creating their educational plans. Postgraduate Education Title II of the ADA and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 prohibit public higher education institutions from discriminating against qualified students with disabilities by providing reasonable accommodations to and making their facilities accessible for people with disabilities. Our services are similar to those under IDEA cases. Public Accommodations Title III of the ADA requires private entities, both large and small companies, to make their facilities and services accessible to people with disabilities. Unlike Title I, Title III covers all private entities regardless of the number of employees that the companies might have on staff. If you believe a private entity has discriminated against you by failing to make its facilities and/or services accessible, then we can assess your particular case for merit. If we find that it has merit, we can offer the following services: • Conducting accessibility surveys to determine if a given entity is compliant with the ADA Accessibility Guidelines (ADAAG). • Sending a demand letter requesting that a particular entity comply with ADAAG. • Filing a formal complaint with the Department of Justice. • Filing a lawsuit against the noncompliant entity. • Representing clients in mediations, negotiations and courts. Housing The federal Fair Housing Act and Texas Fair Housing Act prohibit disability discrimination in the renting and selling of housing. Under these laws, both public and private entities in the housing industry must make reasonable modifications to their policies, practices and services to ensure equal access to people with disabilities. Landlords must allow renters with disabilities to make reasonable accessibility modifications to the housing premises. These modifications must be at the renters’ expense. If you believe that an entity covered by these laws has discriminated against you, we can assess your case. If we deem that your case has merit, we can offer the following services: • Conducting accessibility reviews of an entity’s facilities to determine if it is in compliance with Housing and Urban Development administration (HUD) accessibility guidelines. • Sending a demand letter to an entity requesting they comply with the law. • Filing a formal complaint with HUD. • Representing clients in courts at the administrative, state and federal levels. Probate Work Wills We can draft wills of any type. From simple wills for individuals to complex wills for couples, we can tailor your will to meet your unique wishes and needs. With a properly drafted will, you can ensure that your estate and cherished possessions get distributed to your loved ones and friends. If you have minor children or mentally incapacitated family members, you can designate a guardian for them in your will in the event they survive you. Trusts We assist people in establishing trusts. There are different types of trusts which people can use to control their money and property. The two main trusts that we draft are the following: • Special Needs Trusts: These trusts are available to people with disabilities who have income from a personal injury lawsuit or some other source that disqualifies them from receiving government benefits such as SSI and Medicaid. When determining the eligibility of individuals with disabilities for benefits, the government cannot consider any money or property which is in a special needs trust. These individuals can put their income in this trust with a third party serving as trustee. The special needs trust, instead of the individual with a disability, owns all the income and property contained within it, thereby making the individual eligible for governmental assistance. • Spendthrift Trusts: A person (grantor) can create a spendthrift trust containing money and/or property for the benefit of someone else (beneficiary). This type of trust is usually created by a grantor who wants to provide for a beneficiary whom the grantor believe cannot or will not manage the money properly. It usually serves as a safe harbor from the beneficiary’s creditors as well. Guardianships A guardianship may be necessary when a person becomes mentally or physically incapacitated. There are two types of guardianships. Guardianship of the estate is where someone has control of an incapacitated person’s money/property and manages the estate. Guardianship of the person is when a guardian takes custody of the incapacitated person. We can assist in establishing or removing a guardianship. Our approach to guardianships is to find ways to give the proposed ward as much freedom as possible to manage his or her life while at the same time ensuring that his or her best interests are served. Civil Commitments Probate courts usually adjudicate civil commitments. Under Texas law, anyone who is (1) deemed mentally ill by a licensed physician, and (2) as a result of that illness, likely to cause serious harm to himself or to others, can be involuntarily committed to a mental health facility. If a person is involuntarily committed to a mental health facility, the state must hold a due process hearing to show good cause for the commitment. If you, one of your family members or a close friend are going through an involuntarily civil commitment, we can offer the following services: • Reviewing the documentation for the commitment application to ensure that the court is following the proper procedures. • Representing clients in due process hearings. • Assisting clients in obtaining the appropriate mental health and support services. Section 1983 Cases and other Civil Rights Cases We bring civil rights cases against governmental agencies and officials, which are usually Section 1983 cases. These cases may involve unconstitutional treatment of undocumented immigrants, abuses in prisons, unconstitutional discrimination, infringement of free speech, freedom of religion and the press. Commercial Litigation We have substantial experience in federal and state courts across the country in complex commercial litigation of all kinds, including class actions, representing plaintiffs in some cases and defendants in others. ERISA Litigation We have taken lead roles in litigating ERISA cases throughout Texas, sometimes representing plaintiffs and representing defendants at other times.

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