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James E. Payne

E-mail MeJames E. Payne

Beaumont, Texas

James E. Payne is a board-certified personal injury attorney who has worked at Provost & Umphrey since 1995. Payne was certified in Personal Injury Trial Law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization in 1999. The National Board of Trial Advocacy certified him in 2001 as a Certified Civil Trial Advocate and in 2012 as a Pretrial Practice Advocate. From 2003-2014, Payne has been selected for the Texas Super Lawyers list by Thomson Reuters. Texas Super Lawyers represents only 5 percent of the lawyers in the state. He recently became a certified member of the Million Dollar Advocates Forum and the Multi-Million Dollar Advocates Forum. Additionally, Payne has been selected for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America©  every year from 2006 to 2015.

Payne is very active in several social and civic organizations, he is a life member of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, and Sigma Pi Phi Fraternity (currently serving as Grand Sire/National President). Payne developed the nationally recognized Buy 90 Campaign which was designed to economically empower the African American community in Southeast Texas. Payne is highly sought after as a motivational speaker by many organizations, schools and churches. James Payne authored a book, "I am Healed, But I am Still Sick?" 

Additional Contact

Genia Marks, 409-835-6000, gmarks@provostumphrey.com

Year Joined Firm

  • 1995

Areas of Practice

  • Personal Injury
  • Products Liability
  • Industrial Work Site Accidents
  • Automobile Accident
  • Premises Liability

Certified Legal Specialties

  • Certified in Personal Injury Trial Law, Texas Board of Legal Specialization, 1999
  • Certified Civil Trial Advocate, National Board of Trial Advocacy, 2001

Bar Admissions

  • Texas, 1993
  • U.S. District Court Eastern District of Texas
  • U.S. District Court Southern District of Texas
  • U.S. Court of Appeals 5th Circuit
  • U.S. Supreme Court


  • University of Houston Law Center, Houston, Texas
    • J.D. - 1993
    • Honors: Order of Barristers
  • University of Houston
    • B.S. - 1989
    • Honors: With Honors
    • Major: Political Science

Honors and Awards

  • Texas Super Lawyer, a Thomson Reuters Business, 2003-2014
  • Martindale-Hubbell: "AV" Rated
  • Member of American Board of Trial Advocates ABOTA
  • Member of Multi-Million Dollar Advocates Forum
  • Best Lawyers in America®, US News, 2006 - 2015
  • Fellow, Texas Bar Foundation
  • Top 100: Houston Super Lawyers, a Thomson Reuters Business, 2013

Professional Associations and Memberships

  • State Bar of Texas, Member
  • American Board of Trial Advocates (ABOTA), Member
  • College of the State Bar of Texas, Member
  • American Association for Justice
  • Texas Trial Lawyers Association, Member
  • Jefferson County Black Lawyers Association, Member
  • Multi-Million Dollar Advocates Forum, Member
  • National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, Life Member

Past Employment Positions

  • Congressman William Lehman, Washington, DC, Staff
  • Vinson & Elkins, L.L.P., Associate


  • Sigma Pi Phi
  • Alpha Phi Alpha

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Walter Umphrey

Walter Umphrey In 2010, Texas Lawyer magazine named Mr. Umphrey as one of the twenty-five greatest Texas lawyers of the past quarter-century. Learn More