Former investment adviser Philip Rousseaux is embroiled in another legal battle, this time with his attorneys, who claim he spent more than a year avoiding being served with their lawsuit seeking to recover more than $470,000 in unpaid fees.
Rousseaux was the owner of Everest Wealth Management, a Towson-based firm known for its popular “Money Guys” infomercial. The firm was previously barred from doing business in Maryland by the Maryland Office of the Attorney General due to allegations of fraud and securities law violations. Rousseaux’s investment adviser registration was revoked and he was fined $255,000, sanctions which were upheld on appeal.
Potomac-based Shulman, Rogers, Gandal, Pordy & Ecker P.A. began representing Rousseaux in 2014. According to their lawsuit, filed in Montgomery County Circuit Court in December 2018, Rousseaux has an outstanding balance of $471,197 that he has refused to pay.
Rousseaux did not return to a call seeking comment Wednesday.
After the complaint was filed, Shulman Rogers alleges Rousseaux “consistently evaded service” by failing to answer the door for a private process server, constantly moving with the knowledge that the firm was trying to serve him, refusing to authorize someone else to accept service, and failing to provide a location where he will accept service.
A judge granted the firm’s request late last year to allow alternative service by using certified mail to send the summons to multiple known addresses, according to court records. But Rousseaux, who made his first filing in the case in early February to ask that a Feb. 28 hearing be postponed, claims he had been traveling abroad and only recently became aware of the lawsuit.
“I am now back in the States and will need to find counsel to reply to this lawsuit and properly defend myself against these allegations as well as a consideration of a counterclaim,” he wrote.
Montgomery County Circuit Judge Robert A. Greenberg denied the motion and held a hearing without Rousseaux, according to electronic court records. A one-day trial is scheduled for June 4.
Rousseaux filed an answer in the case on March 2 and said he intends to defend himself and seek counsel. Greenberg denied a motion for order of default against Rousseaux, filed Feb. 28, last week, finding that he had responded and the court would treat the late filing as timely, according to electronic court records.
Shulman Rogers attorney Allison Baker Shealy declined to comment on the case last week.
The case is Shulman, Rogers, Gandal, Pordy & Ecker P.A. v. Philip Rousseaux, 460936V.