Legal Bills Mount for Former Tampa Anchor

Former WTSP Weatherman Jim Van Fleet sued the Tegna stations and his bosses after he was let go. 

Van Fleet hired the Solomon Law Group to handle his lawsuit. Back in September of last year, Van Fleet dropped the lawsuit against his old station, but his legal bills with the Solomon Law Group have reached over $60,000 and now his lawyers are suing him to get the money back. 

FTVLIve obtained a copy of the lawsuit and it appears that the two sides have been trying to workout a payment plan, but have not agreed to anything. 

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Van Fleet attempted to reduce his debt by bartering at first by giving the firm his endorsement and then offering to be an "expert witness" for the firm in cases that involve weather testimony. 

Van Fleet has made payments to the firm here and there, but they are not satisfied with the sporadic payments or the amount.  

In one email from the firm to Van Fleet, the firm wrote, "I know you have made some payments recently, but those payments have been sporadic and do not seem to follow any regular pattern," The firm said. "Moreover, although you outlined some ideas on a payment plan and some other benefits you thought you could bring to the firm, we haven’t fully fleshed out and agreed to any specific plan and we have not seen any action on the intangible benefits you suggested you could bring to the table."

"I paid $1,000 last month and quite surprisingly got a very nasty email in return," Van Fleet replied back. "I shouldn’t have been surprised though given all the reviews and feedback regarding Sandy (Solomon)  and warning to stay away. I can afford $300 a month, and that’s what I’ll pay."

The firm has now filed a lawsuit saying that Van Fleet owes them $57,931 in legal fees, plus 12% annual interest, bringing the amount to over $60,000. 

Van Fleet now works for Royal Caribbean’s as the cruise-line's chief meteorologist. He says in a letter to Solomon that the job pays $55,000 less than his job at WTSP. 

Records show that Solomon Law Group has a number of pending lawsuits against clients or former clients.