Attorney Jerry "Wally" Wallentine
Legal Focus and Case Interest
The two areas of practice which I have represented clients for over the last 17 years includes personal injury and criminal defense. Over the years I have become especially focused and interested in just PI work, mostly for automobile accidents. In fact, car wrecks have become my primary legal practice. It brings me joy to help my clients obtain maximum funds from an insurance company that usually wants to pay next to nothing.
Parents and Value Formation
I am incredibly proud of my parents. My father grew up in poverty, and had to give up education after middle school in order to work full time to support his parents and sisters. Despite having little formal education, he is an incredibly smart and gifted man. He provided for his family through his hard work in a factory. In my mother’s family, women were subjected to sexist expectations. She was rejected by her parents for going to college, since they felt her place as a woman was in the home. She left home, married my father at 18, and had two children by 21. She just recently retired as a special education teacher, with a Master’s degree, having achieved the highest testing scores seen at her University. Despite my parents’ modest beginnings, they live life to the fullest together and continue to help the less fortunate by regularly volunteering their time at church and in the community.
Growing up in this family taught me the importance of providing a fair opportunity for all. A person has value, regardless of wealth, color, status, or gender.
I grew up in a Nazarene Church and was in full time ministry for numerous years before going to law school. I am currently an ordained Nazarene Minister and am a very part-time weekend worship pastor for Topeka First Church of the Nazarene. I love Jesus and believe that Jesus is the Son of the Living God.
I’m thankful to live in America, where freedom of religion is valued and upheld. While I am happy to share my spiritual beliefs, I respect people who have other religious views.
My Beliefs About Our Judicial Court System
It is my honor to regularly appear in Court and be a part of an amazing judicial system. It is the intent of our judicial system and it is my desire that justice in our courts be blind, not beholden to ideology, politics, or individual preference. Rather, the law should be followed and applied in each case fairly and correctly. We don’t always get it right, but our judicial system helps provide both order and justice. Without order, we would be unable to thrive as a community.
On numerous occasions, I have served as pro tem judge in Johnson County District Court. I especially enjoy this opportunity to serve the judicial system. It is an incredible honor I take very seriously as I attempt to administer justice fairly and do what is right.
I love my country. No, it isn’t perfect, but our democratic experiment has been amazing and something American citizens should not take for granted. We have been provided so much and blessed beyond imagine. I value hard work and personal responsibility, but I also value an even playing field that doesn’t give all the advantages to the wealthy. I believe we should provide strong opportunities for individuals who are hard workers, but have not been born with a silver spoon in their mouth. I believe our United States Constitution and it’s Bill of Rights are not just loopholes or suggestions. When it comes to especially difficult political issues, we need to be critical thinkers, reasonable, valuing people and their liberties. It's easy to take one sided political views, but it takes courage and intellectual honesty to truly evaluate a situation from all perspectives.
Experience is the key to a successful legal career. I began my journey as an attorney learning from some of the best and most experienced lawyers in Kansas. This provided me the knowledge and abilities to succeed as a private attorney in Olathe. I graduated from MidAmerica Nazarene University in 1995 with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Business Administration. I later attended the University of Kansas School of Law, where I graduated with my J.D. I love being an attorney and I take great pride in representing each of my clients. I have represented over 1000 clients and litigated many cases through jury trials, bench trials, motion hearings, mediation, settlement, and other resolutions.
I am licensed to practice in the Kansas and Missouri state bars and am the author of an article within The Journal of the Kansas Bar Association, KBA. I am a member of different legal organizations, such as The Johnson County Bar Association, where I am a Fellow., and the Kansas Trial Lawyers Association.
Philosophy in Representing my Clients
I believe in aggressive, truth driven, client centered representation. What does that mean?
Aggressive: I zealously represent my client's interests. That does not necessarily mean being rude or being a "bulldog" as some people call it. My preference and regular practice is to be kind and collegial to the opposing side. This is for several reasons. First, we should simply treat others well because people matter, even when in opposition. Second, being antagonistic is oftentimes hurtful to your case. Most cases are resolved via alternative dispute resolutions. Animosity and hostile interaction doesn't facilitate healthy productive resolution. Please understand, there are times when the other side is unreasonable or does have the "bulldog" mentality. In those cases, we continue to be respectful, but will never compromise our client. We continue to file the appropriate motions, pursue legitimate lawsuits, and strongly advocate for what is best for our client. Sometimes the other side is simply unreasonable, and we deal with them steadfastly, competently and effectively, rather than just yelling about it and make everything miserable and more difficult in the process.
Truth Driven: Our court system is a place for truth to be revealed. I will not lie for my clients, nor will I let my clients lie in Court. Unfortunately, I find that insurance companies often don't want the truth coming out about things like, an insurance company paying the judgement versus the driver. Sadly, at jury trials, the jurors are often not allowed to be told the truth that it is an insurance company who is actually paying the judgment, not the individual. Furthermore, the insurance companies will try to minimize the true damages. So, as a personal injury attorney, I find that it is especially important that my client's injuries be made clear as insurance companies will want to minimize the damage.
Client Centered: We keep regular open communication with our clients. Furthermore, we focus on achieving what our clients need and want.
About My Personal Life
While I work hard for my clients and am very serious about representing them, I also play hard and love to spend time with my family. I have three kids and an amazing wife. Check out this video of our 20th Wedding Anniversary Adventure Trip to Kauai, Hawaii.