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Questions about Answering 2 Interrogatory Questions


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I am answering questions now and have 2 that I need advice on for GA. The attorney here is a former Hannah guy and I want to object to these 2 specifically - everything else is covered except these at the present.

5. If you have ever been charged with any criminal offense, please state:

a. The nature of the offense;

b. The date of the offense;

c. The county and state in which the alleged events occurred; and

d. The sentence imposed, if applicable.

RESPONSE:

6. If you have ever been involved in any legal action other than those previously identified, either as a defendant, plaintiff, claimant, or witness, state;

a. The date and place each such action was filed, giving the name of the forum, the name of the other party or parties involved, the number of such action, and the names of the attorneys representing each party; and

b. A description of the nature of each such action.

RESPONSE:

They also are requesting a copy of my GA Drivers license in the Document Request - should I send them a copy or is there a good objection for that as well. I am objecting to info on my spouse and children under privacy already.

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For the criminal offenses if you have any on the record that haven't been expunged list them.

for the lawsuit questions you would have to list them also

those interrogatories are called character interrogatories. alot of people would object but the fact that they are public record will be used against some on to show they have no credibility.

Just make sure you send the same two interrogatories to them :)

for the drivers license issue you could check for states codes for personal identifying information protection and cite that as an objection:

for example:

Objection the request calls for information protected under <state code number> and is thus improper. the request will not lead to discoverable information and violates defendants protected privacy rights.

welcome to the board.

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5. If you have ever been charged with any criminal offense, please state:

a. The nature of the offense;

b. The date of the offense;

c. The county and state in which the alleged events occurred; and

d. The sentence imposed, if applicable.

RESPONSE: Irrelevant, the fact that whether or not the Defendant has a criminal record or not would not prove whether or not the Defendant owes the alleged debt. Leads to no discoverable evidence that would help prove the Plaintiffs case.

6. If you have ever been involved in any legal action other than those previously identified, either as a defendant, plaintiff, claimant, or witness, state;

a. The date and place each such action was filed, giving the name of the forum, the name of the other party or parties involved, the number of such action, and the names of the attorneys representing each party; and

b. A description of the nature of each such action.

RESPONSE: Objection, same as above except as to the fact as to whether or not the Defendant has ever been involved in a court case.

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I'd answer the questions, but no way would I send my ID.

Now the criminal offenses could defiantley be precluded at a trial, depending on the nature of the case and the nature of the criminal offenses, if any.

You did not say but since you're posting on this board, I assume the case against you is a breech of contract, or similar case, dealing with a defaulted loan or credit card?

If so, those are almost always bench trials. That means the judge will actually not consider the criminal offenses, or if considered will only give them the weight the law specifies.

In other words they won't be able to let a skunk loose in the courtroom. That means asking a question that will obviously be met with a sustained objection so the jury can hear testimony that is not admissible.

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This is a Superior Court case on a CC by a JDB. It is in excess of $15k and therefore is Superior Court. We are looking at BK and therefore have not hired an attorney so I have been lurking here and have read the rules of the court and are following what is required. We did consult with a BK attorney and he said to answer and we would have 6 months before anything could really happen in this matter so we had time to decide what to do.

I sent Discovery requests and filed the paperwork with the court and am waiting for the responses but in the meantime I must complete my responses by the 28th.

No criminal stuff ever but I did not want to answer that because I do have a civil deal that was resolved via Consent Judgement with another JDB for a small amount. I should have fought that one as well but was scared so I amswered that I disputed the amount but acknowledged the debt. It was Magistrate court and basically the judge sends everyone out to negotiate and the JDB set up a payment plan that is month to month so I signed. Had I realized they really had no way to prove anything I would have fought but like I said, I was afraid so I caved. Due to that I dont want to provide answers to either of these questions really as they are to character but like the prior poster stated, they do not help prove I owe this debt.

I just need to figure out how to avoid the drivers license as my reason there is simply I am trying to avoid giving them anything really because they have the burden of proof. I dont see where it is applicable either but qan looking for a legal reason to avoid the docuement submission - so far the GA COde only talks about privacy via the DMV.

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The questions they will argue go to credibility. As I stated previously, getting the answers in discovery does not equal the information is admissible at trial.

For example, here is my argument if you use the irrelevant objection.

Your Honor, we plan to call the Defendant as a witness for the Plaintiff. If the Defendant has been convicted of a felony, especially perjury, that is highly relevant and goes to the credibility of the witness. Credibility of the witness is for a trier of the facts to determine in giving weight to the testimony. The answers to the interrogatories might produce inadmissible and irrelevant information, but it's fair game to explore the issue to see what comes up, relevant and admissible evidence might also be disclosed.

A stretch? Yes. But in my opinion you would be required to answer. You might argue that any criminal offense is too broad and if they want to narrow the scope of the question to if you have ever been convicted of a felony, you would answer.

The judge will still have to look at two things to determine if the evidence you produce is admissible.

1. Is the information you provided relevant to the case. The answer will most likely be no.

2. If it is relevant, does the probative value outweigh the potential prejudice. If it's a jury trial, the answer again will probably be it does not get admitted.

I'd still answer and not object. That way you don't even crack the door open for them to file a motion to compel. But I agree it probably won't lead to anything.

On the drivers license issue, I can't think of any reason you would be ordered to produce that.

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I seem to remember reading somewhere that certain states will yank your license if you have unpaid judgments against you. Not sure under what circumstances, prob auto accident related. You worked insurance, Coltfan, ever hear of this? I'm with the Gunny on this one, I see absolutely no reason to give them this info, it is completely irrelevant. Nascar said the same thing a while back on this topic. I don't think any prior criminal conviction would be any more admissible here than in criminal court. I'd probably object, or say "yeah, I shot a junk debt lawyer in the court house parking lot last year. He was facing away from me and was bending down to tie his shoe. They dismissed the case because they couldn't find the bullet hole."

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Yeah they will yank your license in a heartbeat if you are uninsured, cause an accident, and then don't immediately pay up. They send the request to the DMV. The DMV will then give you a short time to pay or ask for a hearing. Of course nobody will take a hearing. They then suspend your license.

On the interrogatory questions, I'm saying they are relevant to ask, but will probably yield no admissible evidence. Probably is the key word. A prior felony is very fair game to attack credibility.

Now if the OP answers and he has some speeding tickets, maybe a public intox, or simple battery because he punched some guy in the face that grabbed his woman, of course those won't be admissible.

However, you don't know until you ask and find out. Also, prior bad acts are allowed in criminal trials all them. They can even admit prior bad acts that you have not been convicted of if the crimes are the same or similar.

The judge has to weight the probative value against prejudice. It makes for great appeals, but prior bad acts are not always excluded.

I just don't see how the OP would win a motion to compel on this if the creditor simply said the request goes to credibility. We are trying to "discover" if there are any credibility issues. In other words discovery is to discover and we are well aware the admissibility of what we discover will be a whole other argument.

If the OP (NOT SAYING YOU DO OP) has a bank fraud conviction, forgery, and theft charge, and the OP defense is he was the victim of ID theft and those signatures on the documents are not mine. The prior criminal history is very relevant. If the OP got in a bar fight and spent six hours in jail and paid a 100.00 fine, of course that would be inadmissible in every court in the country in a defaulted credit card case.

Don't disagree with you often, but no way I don't see the requests as relevant. However, the copy of the drivers license is irrelevant. They can obtain all the info they need without a copy of the OP license.

In all honesty I have to admit I might have cheated in my answer. I asked the other side in my case, witness name by witness name, if they had been convicted of a felony and/or a misd that involved dishonesty or theft. So I did narrow my scope big time than that of these requests.

They objected, I used the same argument I just made above and did a motion to compel. They immediately answered so the MTC became moot. However, I expect they would have taken a shot at beating me if they thought they had a legit objection. They needed all the help they could get with the scoreboard. They were getting blown out from the first whistle on. In other words I was throwing a bombs to the end zone every play, even up by seven touchdowns and two minutes left in the game. :twisted:

Edited by Coltfan1972
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Don't disagree with you often, but no way I don't see the requests as relevant. However, the copy of the drivers license is irrelevant. They can obtain all the info they need without a copy of the OP license.

Based on another lawsuit where I know the facts and got to read the discovery requests, yet it is not debt case and I am not a party, some attorneys will ask some off the wall crap. I'm talking a case that has only to do with a physical injury that is completely 100% unrelated to the daughter, yet they were asking for the daughter's school records. There are no claims in the complaint, any affidavit or any other piece of evidence or even a hint whatsoever that the daughter suffered any injury whatsoever.

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A prior felony is very fair game to attack credibility.

Hey, just because I robbed a liquor store and shot three people doesn't mean I won't tell the truth in court. I see your point, I just don't see where these guys can pursue this. It sounds like the ultimate fishing expedition designed to paint you as a perjurer. Criminal records are public record, why can't the lazy JDb go to the court house and find out on his own? He'd still have to prove you lied in court if that was his plan of attack.

Edited by legaleagle
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It sounds like the ultimate fishing expedition designed to paint you as a perjurer.

That's because that is exactly what it is. :D

Criminal records are public record, why can't the lazy JDb go to the court house and find out on his own?

Because there are literally thousands of courthouses across the country and the large majority don't have online access.

He'd still have to prove you lied in court if that was his plan of attack.

True, but a judge or jury is going to be a ton less likely to believe you know nothing about a 30K credit card bill that you allegedly ran up over five years, if you're sitting there with a criminal record that involves dishonesty or theft.

Goes to credibility is the catch all for most objections. Just about anything you can argue, "goes to credibility your Honor."

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So worst case if I say that the request is irrelevant and they object I answer the two questions in a few weeks just not now. Or is there some other reason not to force them to object on credability? Just trying to buy time right now as I review options......

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You don't want a judge, that will be hearing the merits of your case, compelling you to answer a question like that. That is why the other side immediately answered the second I did a MTC.

Just answer it and if you have something on your record, so be it. Or take the position you are going to fight it and stick to your guns, and see it through.

That is my opinion.

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Because there are literally thousands of courthouses across the country and the large majority don't have online access.

NCIC. If you had a parking ticket anywhere in the US, it's here, you can pay 39.00 for a criminal check and it will search any database in the US. If it isn't there, how could the JDB prove otherwise? If it were me, I'd do that search myself before answering. I just don't like this, it smacks of self incrimination. Murderers with 7 prior convictions can stand trial and the prosecutor can't mention any of them. Is there any case law supporting this question? I think the poster's situation was adequately described:

No criminal stuff ever but I did not want to answer that

In that case, I would say just answer no. Nothing to lose if truthful.

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