James F. Scherr, a native El Pasoan, is the founding partner of Scherr Legate.
Jim has been practicing law for over 43 years, and has been lead trial counsel for the Plaintiff in over 250 wrongful death and personal Jury trials. Jim has handled wrongful death and personal injury cases throughout Texas and New Mexico, as well as in the States of California, Arizona, Nevada and other states. Jim has been lead counsel for victims in cases involving construction, trucking, bus, product liability, trains, tire, fires and explosions, trench collapse, building collapse, excavators, stairs, power lines, electrocutions, closed space, chemical cases, carbon monoxide, forklifts, crashworthiness, civil rights, motor vehicle and work related incidents. Jim’s cases have made national news and have been the subject of numerous films and news articles including CBS, Insider Exclusive and other programs. Jim has been featured in many publications including Forbes Magazine, the Wall Street Journal, Philadelphia Enquirer, Las Cruces Sun News, SantaFean, El Paso Inc and El Paso Times.
In 1976, at age 22, Jim was sworn in as the youngest attorney in the State of Texas at the time, receiving one of the top grades on the Bar exam. Jim started practicing law when personal injury law was in its infancy, before the existence of any board certification, and shortly after the new legal theory of “comparative negligence” was created.
Shortly after his election as the youngest person ever elected to El Paso City Council in 1977 , Jim was introduced to help victims of personal injury law by his friend who broke his back falling from an ASARCO smelter smokestack.
Jim’s legal career has been paralleled by his active leadership and involvement in bettering his community of El Paso, like his grandparents and parents before him, and his children and grandchildren. Jim and his family are well known throughout the region for active involvement in civic, business, politics and community activities.
Founding partner Sam Legate appreciates that along with the benefits of managing El Paso’s premier personal liability law firm comes great responsibilities, too.
“We are the largest personal injury firm in El Paso. We see our obligation to help the people of El Paso any way we can.”
That begins with health care. Along with Jim Scherr, Sam donated $1 million to create the Scherr Legate Trauma Center at University Medical Center, the only Level 1 trauma center within a 280-mile radius. Sam was also the Founding Chairman of the Board for El Paso Children’s Hospital. And he is active with the Downtown Management District.
“Whether it’s trauma care or our cases, we want to see people treated justly. And we want help to advance our community’s economy.”
In his role on the Downtown Management District’s Board of Directors, Jim helps the agency revitalize the city’s oldest commercial area.
“Our Downtown is the most beautiful place in the city and one of the most beautiful places in Texas and the U.S. We’ll continue to advance that effort.”
Sam came to El Paso in the early 1990s after practicing law for five years in Oklahoma. Having grown up in another border city, Presidio, Texas, he found El Paso to be a better cultural fit for him than Oklahoma. A mutual friend, Sue Kurita, introduced Sam to Jim Scherr, saying they would make a good fit professionally.
After a lengthy interview, Sam found they had a lot in common, including an interest in real estate, doing good for the community, problem solving and a genuine desire to help people. Together, they’ve made Scherr Legate the region’s top personal injury firm.
Today, Sam is the firm’s managing partner and works on its top cases. He handles cases involving labor and employment, personal injury, product liability, as well as non-subscribers work injuries, and wrongful deaths.
Rod spent the first 10 years of his law career with Scherr Legate before leaving to build his own successful practice for 14 years. Now, he’s back where he started but with much more experience, having practiced criminal and family law in addition to personal liability. Since returning to Scherr Legate, Rod has worked primarily on motor vehicle and premises liability cases. With his return to personal injury cases, Rod knows the plaintiffs he represents are unfamiliar with courtrooms and the legal process. Rod recognizes that so many clients have never been through this with insurance companies and takes pride in knowing that he can help guide his clients and solve problems for them.
Rod who was born and raised in El Paso, followed his father and uncle into law. He earned his bachelor and law degree at the same school they did.
When away from the firm, Rod spends time with his wife and three sons. He likes to be outdoors, whether it’s hiking, biking, running or snow skiing. All three of his sons are active in the Boys Scouts of America, where Rod is a former Scout Master. He is the current Adult Committee Chair for his sons’ Troop 59.