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PLEASE CRITIQUE DISCOVERY RESPONSES IN CALIFORNIA


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Hello, I’m preparing responses to plaintiff T**g*t NatBk’s discovery and need feedback on whether I’m offering my head on a platter, or triggering a motion to compel with sanctions. I had some help from legal aid and they were concerned that my responses should have as much statutory wording as possible. They said if the other side decides to push back, they could file a motion to compel with sanctions. I’ve never seen this happen in the seven years’ worth of timelines on the court website, but perhaps there could always be a first time.

Actually, the case has been ordered to arbitration but my research shows that discovery may continue in the meantime, including discovery motions. I’m thinking that if the file a motion against me, I can do the same with them, but that’s another issue.

Here’s my timeline so far:

12-29-11 Complaint filed by T**g*t NatBk at local superior court.

1-09-12 Complaint served by substituted service; Common Counts/Other/CC(1)(a)(2)causes of action within the last 4 years “because an account was stated in writing by and between plaintiff and defendant in which it was agreed that defendant was indebted to plaintiff.” AND CC(1)(B)(6) “This cause of action is based upon account number XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX for the sum by Which Defendant has been unjustly enriched by virtue of Defendant receiving monetary or other benefit, by Defendant knowingly requesting the funds at issue and/or accepting the benefits bestowed. It is inequitable for Defendant to retain said benefits without repaying Plaintiff the value thereof.” CC-2 $4228.29.

2-09-12 Defendant filed General Denial:

1. Plaintiff fails to state a claim upon which relief may be granted.

2. Plaintiff fails to state facts sufficient to constitute any cause of action against Defendant.

3. Plaintiff's claims are barred by the Statute of Limitations. CCP Section 337, 340.

4. Plaintiff failed to mitigate damages.

5. Plaintiff's claims are barred by unclean hands.

6. Plaintiff's claims are barred by waiver and/or estoppel.

7. Plaintiff's claims are barred by laches.

8. Defendant is entitled to set-off for payments already made.

9. Defendant expressly and specifically reserves the right to amend this answer to add, delete and/or modify defenses based upon legal theories, facts and circumstances which may or will be divulged through discovery and/or further legal analysis of Plaintiff's position in this litigation.

Defendant also filed Bill of Particulars asking for the following:

a. Copy of the instrument upon which the alleged account is based, i.e., contract.

b. The date of each transaction.

c. A description of the services, materials or goods supplied or other considerations rendered.

d. The price or charge made for each item.

e. All payments or credits that have been made to the account.

f. ITEMIZATION of the account from ZERO balance; including all debits and credits against the alleged account, including interest rates per transaction, dates of transactions.

g. Any modifications to terms and conditions over course of the account.

h. A copy of any contract from Target National Bank giving Pantdude & Co. the right to collect the alleged debt including any consideration paid therefore.

2-27-12 Pltf served Response to BOP (objections, no production)

NOTE: Pltf denies applicability of BOP; states defendant “is strictly limited to Unjust Enrichment Cause of Action.” Cites Caruso v. Snap Tite, Inc. Pltf then states “The complaint is based on an quantum meruit, and an account stated and Defendant’s breach thereon in the principal amount of $4,228.29. True and correct copies of the statements will be furnished to Defendant as they become available. Plaintiff reserves the right to produce more billing statements as they become available or produce them at trial.”

]4-5-12 Served discovery on Plaintiff.

4-13-12 Pltf served Supplemental Response to BOP (attached Exh 1 – 134 pgs) (dated 4-13-12 no signature, no proof of service, postmarked 4-16-12). Pltf basically repeats the first Response, including quantum meruit and account stated, and states: “True and correct copies of the statements are attached hereto as “Exhibit 1.” Plaintiff reserves the right to produce more billing statements as they become available or produce them at trial.” The unauthenticated statements have missing months and cover the period from Dec. 2005 through Sept. 2011.

4-20-12 Faxed meet-and-confer letter to plaintiff’s counsel in San Diego re filing motion to compel further respsonses to Bill of Particulars.

4-21-12 Rec’d Discovery Requests from plaintiff’s counsel, served 4-18-12, due 5-23-12.

4-22-12 Voicemail from plaintiff’s counsel asking for a call back, saying “ “it’s important that we meet and confer.”

4-26-12 Pltf re-mailed Exh 1 claiming “This office has provided all documents within its client’s possession custody and control in March of 2012 in response to your initial request. Unfortunately our client no longer has possession and control of the original application as it has been lost or misplaced.”

5-3-12 Called plaintiff’s counsel requesting extension to respond to Discovery (served 4-18-12 and due 5-23-12) due to converging issues and deadlines. Extension granted; defendant faxed and mailed confirming letter.

5-7-12 Rec’d Rsps to my discovery which was served 5-4-12 (deadline to serve MTC is 45 days after 5-4-12, plus 5 days for mailing - 6-23-12 Saturday, thus 6-25-12 Monday). Plaintiff verifications are by infamous robosigner, who is listed on Linked In as an employee of plaintiff’s parent corporation since 1999. How could he be an employee of plaintiff, the subsidiary corporation?

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So here are the 8 admissions requests, which all have the same answer developed by the legal aid attorney.

REQUEST FOR ADMISSION NO. 1:

Admit that Defendant ME requested a charge account with Plaintiff SOUTH DAKOTA BANK.

REQUEST FOR ADMISSION NO. 2:

Admit that Plaintiff SOUTH DAKOTA BANK issued a charge account number XXXXXX to Defendant ME.

REQUEST FOR ADMISSION NO. 3:

Admit that Defendant ME entered into a contract with Plaintiff SOUTH DAKOTA BANK.

REQUEST FOR ADMISSION NO.4:

Admit that Defendant ME used the charge account number XXXXXX issued by Plaintiff SOUTH DAKOTA BANK.

REQUEST FOR ADMISSION NO. 5:

Admit that Defendant ME agreed to pay Plaintiff SOUTH DAKOTA BANK for charges made on the charge account number XXXXXX.

REQUEST FOR ADMISSION NO. 6:

Admit that as a result of using the charge account Defendant ME became indebted to Plaintiff SOUTH DAKOTA BANK in the principal sum of $4XXX.XX.

REQUEST FOR ADMISSION NO. 7:

Admit that Defendant ME never reported charge account number XXXXXX as “lost” or “stolen” to Plaintiff SOUTH DAKOTA BANK.

REQUEST FOR ADMISSION NO. 8:

Admit that there are no unresolved disputes or other issues between Plaintiff SOUTH DAKOTA BANK and Defendant ME regarding charge account number XXXXXX.

Here’s the same answer for all 8, presented here one time:

RESPONSE TO REQUESTS FOR ADMISSION NOS. 1-8:

Defendant is unable to admit or deny this Request. Defendant has made a reasonable inquiry to obtain sufficient information concerning the matter stated in this request, but the information known or readily obtainable to Defendant is insufficient to enable responding party to admit or deny such matter.

Is it better to add: “Based upon the foregoing, Defendant must deny.”

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It’s the same story with the requests for production. There are 7 of them, all with the same answer, as follows:

REQUEST FOR PRODUCTION NO. 1:

Please produce copies of all written agreements between you and Plaintiff SOUTH DAKOTA BANK.

REQUEST FOR PRODUCTION NO. 2:

Please produce any and all documents, writings or communications which support your contention that this is not an accurate amount due and owing as claimed by Plaintiff SOUTH DAKOTA BANK in the complaint.

REQUEST FOR PRODUCTION NO. 3:

Please produce any and all documents, writings or communications notifying Plaintiff that you dispute the outstanding balance currently due and owing Plaintiff Target.

REQUEST FOR PRODUCTION NO. 4:

Please produce any and all copies of checks or other method of payments sent on your behalf to Plaintiff Target for the past four (4) years.

REQUEST FOR PRODUCTION NO. 5:

Please produce copies of all files maintained by you regarding Plaintiff SOUTH DAKOTA BANK, including but not limited to vendor, computer, telephone or otherwise.

REQUEST FOR PRODUCTION NO. 6:

Please produce any and all documents, writings, or communications, including all billing statements in your possession within the last four years, showing any and all purchases and/or cash advances made by you on your charge account with Plaintiff Target.

REQUEST FOR PRODUCTION NO. 7:

Please produce any and all documents, writings, or communications evidencing that your charge account with Plaintiff Target has been paid and that you are not indebted to Plaintiff Target in any amount whatsoever.

And here’s the same answer for all 7, presented here one time:

RESPONSE TO REQUESTS FOR PRODUCTION NOS. 1-7:

Defendant is unable to produce any documents responsive to this request. A diligent search and reasonable inquiry has been made in an effort to locate items responsive to this request, however, a diligent search reveals no existence of any written or oral contract.

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The Form Interrogatories are a little more varied. I wonder if Response 115.2 actually presents my head on a platter. Any ideas?

FORM INTERROGATORY NO. 102.1:

State your name, any other names by which you have been known, and your ADDRESS.

RESPONSE TO FORM INTERROGATORY NO. 102.1:

ME, MYSELF AND MINE.

MY ADDRESS.

FORM INTERROGATORY NO. 115.2:

State in detail the facts upon which you base your contention that you are not responsible, in whole or in part, for plaintiff’s damages.

RESPONSE TO FORM INTERROGATORY NO. 115.2:

Defendant recalls having a credit card account with SOUTH DAKOTA BANK, but has no recollection of receiving charge account number XXXXXXX. Defendant disputes the principal, interest, fees and penalties claimed due and owing to plaintiff, as well as the other relief sought in the complaint. Discovery, investigation and research of the applicable law is continuing and further information responsive to the request may become available upon seeing plaintiff’s presentation of evidence at trial, therefore defendant reserves the right to amend her response to add further details of her defense as they become available.

FORM INTERROGATORY NO. 115.3:

State the name, ADDRESS, and the telephone number of each PERSON, other than the PERSON asking this interrogatory, who is responsible, in whole or in part, for damages claimed in this action.

Defendant does not have personal knowledge sufficient to respond fully to this request. Discovery, investigation and research of the applicable law is continuing and further information responsive to the request may become available upon seeing plaintiff’s presentation of evidence at trial, therefore defendant reserves the right to amend her response to add further details of her defense as they become available.

FORM INTERROGATORY NO. 150.7:

Describe and give the date of every act or omission that you claim is a breach of the agreement.

RESPONSE TO FORM INTERROGATORY NO. 150.7:

Defendant does not have personal knowledge sufficient to respond fully to this request. Defendant has made a reasonable inquiry to obtain sufficient information concerning the matter stated in the interrogatory, but the information known or readily obtainable by the Defendant is insufficient to enable the Defendant to respond to the interrogatory. Discovery, investigation and research of the applicable law is continuing and further information responsive to the request may become available upon seeing plaintiff’s presentation of evidence at trial, therefore defendant reserves the right to amend her response to add further details of her defense as they become available.

FORM INTERROGATORY NO. 150.8:

Identify each agreement excused and state why performance was excused.

RESPONSE TO FORM INTERROGATORY NO. 150.8:

Defendant does not have personal knowledge sufficient to respond fully to this request. Defendant has made a reasonable inquiry to obtain sufficient information concerning the matter stated in the interrogatory, but the information known or readily obtainable by the Defendant is insufficient to enable the Defendant to respond to the interrogatory. Discovery, investigation and research of the applicable law is continuing and further information responsive to the request may become available upon seeing plaintiff’s presentation of evidence at trial, therefore defendant reserves the right to amend her response to add further details of her defense as they become available.

FORM INTERROGATORY NO. 150.9:

Identify each agreement terminated by mutual agreement and state why it was terminated, including dates.

RESPONSE TO FORM INTERROGATORY NO. 150.9:

Defendant does not have personal knowledge sufficient to respond fully to this request. Defendant has made a reasonable inquiry to obtain sufficient information concerning the matter stated in the interrogatory, but the information known or readily obtainable by the Defendant is insufficient to enable the Defendant to respond to the interrogatory. Discovery, investigation and research of the applicable law is continuing and further information responsive to the request may become available upon seeing plaintiff’s presentation of evidence at trial, therefore defendant reserves the right to amend her response to add further details of her defense as they become available.

FORM INTERROGATORY NO. 150.10:

Identify each unenforceable agreement and state the facts upon which your answer is based.

RESPONSE TO FORM INTERROGATORY NO. 150.10:

Defendant does not have personal knowledge sufficient to respond fully to this request. Discovery, investigation and research of the applicable law is continuing and further information responsive to the request may become available upon seeing plaintiff’s presentation of evidence at trial, therefore defendant reserves the right to amend her response to add further details of her defense as they become available.

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The Special Rogs response #2 again seems to put me in a spot. For #4, the lawyer responded with subparts, thus reaching 35 before the rest of the questions could be answered. I did the same for #5, which comes up in the next post, and stopped when it reached 35. Comments, anyone?

SPECROG #1:

State the approximate date you opened charge acct no XXX with Plaintiff.

RESP. TO SPECROG #1:

Defendant has made a reasonable inquiry to obtain sufficient information concerning the matter stated in the interrogatory, but the information known or readily obtainable by the Defendant is insufficient to enable the Defendant to respond to the interrogatory. Discovery, investigation and research of the applicable law is continuing and further information responsive to the request may become available upon seeing plaintiff’s presentation of evidence at trial, therefore defendant reserves the right to amend her response to add further details of her defense as they become available.

SPECROG #2:

State each and every fact, circumstance and/or evidence which in any way supports or substantiates YOUR contention that there is no amount due, owing or unpaid by YOU to Plaintiff.

RESP. TO SPECROG #2:

Defendant recalls having a credit card account with Plaintiff, but has no recollection of receiving alleged charge acct no XXX. Defendant disputes the principal, interest, fees and penalties claimed due and owing to plaintiff, as well as the other relief sought in the complaint. Discovery, investigation and research of the applicable law is continuing and further information responsive to the request may become available upon seeing plaintiff’s presentation of evidence at trial, therefore defendant reserves the right to amend her response to add further details of her defense as they become available.

SPECROG #3:

State in detail each and every fact, circumstance and/or evidence of any dispute(s) remaining unresolved between YOU and Plaintiff.

RESP. TO SPECROG #3:

Defendant has no recollection of receiving alleged charge acct no XXX. Defendant disputes the principal, interest, fees and penalties claimed due and owing to plaintiff, as well as the other relief sought in the complaint. Discovery, investigation and research of the applicable law is continuing and further information responsive to the request may become available upon seeing plaintiff’s presentation of evidence at trial, therefore defendant reserves the right to amend her response to add further details of her defense as they become available.

SPECROG #4:

State all facts upon which you base your denial of any of the paragraphs on the Complaint in this action.

RESP. TO SPECROG #4:

Defendant objects to this interrogatory on the ground that the request contains subparts in violation of CCP 94(a)(1), and on the ground that it is not separate and complete in and of itself. Without waiving these objections, Defendant responds as follows:

(6) Defendant is unable to admit or deny this paragraph. Defendant has made a reasonable inquiry to obtain sufficient information concerning the matter stated in the request, but the information known or readily obtainable by Defendant is insufficient to enable responding party to admit or deny such matter.

(10) Defendant has no recollection of receiving alleged charge acct no XXX. Defendant disputes the principal, interest, fees and penalties claimed due and owing to plaintiff, as well as the other relief sought in the complaint. Discovery, investigation and research of the applicable law is continuing and further information responsive to the request may become available upon seeing plaintiff’s presentation of evidence at trial, therefore defendant reserves the right to amend her RESP. to add further details of her defense as they become available.

CC-1(a)(2) Defendant has no recollection of receiving alleged charge acct no XXX. Defendant disputes the principal, interest, fees and penalties claimed due and owing to plaintiff, as well as the other relief sought in the complaint. Discovery, investigation and research of the applicable law is continuing and further information responsive to the request may become available upon seeing plaintiff’s presentation of evidence at trial, therefore defendant reserves the right to amend her RESP. to add further details of her defense as they become available.

CC-1(B)(6) Defendant has no recollection of receiving alleged charge acct no XXX. Defendant disputes the principal, interest, fees and penalties claimed due and owing to plaintiff, as well as the other relief sought in the complaint. Discovery, investigation and research of the applicable law is continuing and further information responsive to the request may become available upon seeing plaintiff’s presentation of evidence at trial, therefore defendant reserves the right to amend her RESP. to add further details of her defense as they become available.

CC-2 Defendant disputes the principal, interest, fees and penalties claimed due and owing to plaintiff, as well as the other relief sought in the complaint. Discovery, investigation and research of the applicable law is continuing and further information responsive to the request may become available upon seeing plaintiff’s presentation of evidence at trial, therefore defendant reserves the right to amend her response to add further details of her defense as they become available.

CC-4 Defendant disputes the principal, interest, fees and penalties claimed due and owing to plaintiff, as well as the other relief sought in the complaint. Discovery, investigation and research of the applicable law is continuing and further information responsive to the request may become available upon seeing plaintiff’s presentation of evidence at trial, therefore defendant reserves the right to amend her response to add further details of her defense as they become available.

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What did the legal aid attorney say was the reason on the admissions you could just not say 1-8 Denied and for the requests for documents, "The Defendant has none"

I can't see a lot wrong on the request for documents response (I would not use it, but I can't say it's wrong), but I'd can the written or oral contract part at the end.

If you just have to use that answer for admissions I'd defiantly throw in the denial at the end. You don't want to leave any doors cracked on something like this. However, I'd just say "denied"

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SPECROG #5:

State all facts upon which you base each affirmative defense in the Complaint to this action.

RESP. TO SPECROG #5:

Defendant objects to this interrogatory on the ground that the request contains subparts in violation of CCP 94(a)(1), and on the ground that it is not separate and complete in and of itself. Without waiving these objections, Defendant responds as follows regarding affirmative defenses:

1. Plaintiff fails to state a claim upon which relief may be granted. - Responding Party asserted a number of affirmative defenses on information and belief in order to preserve the defenses should discovery and investigation reveal circumstances supporting the affirmative defenses. Defendant has made a reasonable inquiry to obtain sufficient information concerning the matter stated in the interrogatory, but the information known or readily obtainable by the Defendant is insufficient to enable the Defendant to respond to the interrogatory. Discovery, investigation and research of the applicable law is continuing and further information responsive to the request may become available upon seeing plaintiff’s presentation of evidence at trial, therefore defendant reserves the right to amend her RESP. to add further details of her defense as they become available.

2. Plaintiff fails to state facts sufficient to constitute any cause of action against Defendant. - Responding Party asserted a number of affirmative defenses on information and belief in order to preserve the defenses should discovery and investigation reveal circumstances supporting the affirmative defenses. Defendant has made a reasonable inquiry to obtain sufficient information concerning the matter stated in the interrogatory, but the information known or readily obtainable by the Defendant is insufficient to enable the Defendant to respond to the interrogatory. Discovery, investigation and research of the applicable law is continuing and further information responsive to the request may become available upon seeing plaintiff’s presentation of evidence at trial, therefore defendant reserves the right to amend her response to add further details of her defense as they become available.

3. Plaintiff's claims are barred by the Statute of Limitations. CCP Section 337, 340. - Responding Party asserted a number of affirmative defenses on information and belief in order to preserve the defenses should discovery and investigation reveal circumstances supporting the affirmative defenses. Defendant has made a reasonable inquiry to obtain sufficient information concerning the matter stated in the interrogatory, but the information known or readily obtainable by the Defendant is insufficient to enable the Defendant to respond to the interrogatory. Discovery, investigation and research of the applicable law is continuing and further information responsive to the request may become available upon seeing plaintiff’s presentation of evidence at trial, therefore defendant reserves the right to amend her response to add further details of her defense as they become available.

4. Plaintiff failed to mitigate damages. - Responding Party asserted a number of affirmative defenses on information and belief in order to preserve the defenses should discovery and investigation reveal circumstances supporting the affirmative defenses. Defendant has made a reasonable inquiry to obtain sufficient information concerning the matter stated in the interrogatory, but the information known or readily obtainable by the Defendant is insufficient to enable the Defendant to respond to the interrogatory. Discovery, investigation and research of the applicable law is continuing and further information responsive to the request may become available upon seeing plaintiff’s presentation of evidence at trial, therefore defendant reserves the right to amend her response to add further details of her defense as they become available.

Defendant objects to the rest of this interrogatory on the ground that it violates CCP 94(a) in that it exceeds 35, the maximum number of requests therein. Accordingly, defendant is not obligated to respond.

SPECIAL INTERROGATORY NO. 6

State the dates and amounts of any and all payments made by YOU to Plaintiff SOUTH DAKOTA BANK within the last four (4) years.

RESPONSE TO SPECIAL INTERROGATORY NO. 6:

Defendant objects to this interrogatory on the ground that it violates CCP 94(a) in that it exceeds 35, the maximum number of requests therein. Accordingly, defendant is not obligated to respond.

SPECIAL INTERROGATORY NO. 7:

State the dates and amounts of any and all charges incurred by YOU on your charge account with Plaintiff SOUTH DAKOTA BANK within the last two (2) years.

RESPONSE TO SPECIAL INTERROGATORY NO. 7:

Defendant objects to this interrogatory on the ground that it violates CCP 94(a) in that it exceeds 35, the maximum number of requests therein. Accordingly, defendant is not obligated to respond.

SPECIAL INTERROGATORY NO. 8:

State the name and last known business address and telephone numbers of any and all persons authorized by YOU to incur charges on your charge account with Plaintiff SOUTH DAKOTA BANK.

RESPONSE TO SPECIAL INTERROGATORY NO. 8:

Defendant objects to this interrogatory on the ground that it violates CCP 94(a) in that it exceeds 35, the maximum number of requests therein. Accordingly, defendant is not obligated to respond.

SPECIAL INTERROGATORY NO. 9:

IDENTIFY each and every person other than yourself who has ever had possession of the GE charge account number XXXXXX.

RESPONSE TO SPECIAL INTERROGATORY NO. 9:

Defendant objects to this interrogatory on the grounds that it is not relevant to the issues in this action and that it is unintelligible as defendant has never had a charge account with GE. Defendant objects to this interrogatory on the ground that it violates CCP 94(a) in that it exceeds 35, the maximum number of requests therein. Accordingly, defendant is not obligated to respond.

SPECIAL INTERROGATORY NO. 10:

IDENTIFY each and every person who you ever authorized to use YOUR charge account number XXXXXX.

RESPONSE TO SPECIAL INTERROGATORY NO. 10:

Defendant objects to this interrogatory on the ground that it violates CCP 94(a) in that it exceeds 35, the maximum number of requests therein. Accordingly, defendant is not obligated to respond.

SPECIAL INTERROGATORY NO. 11:

State each and every date within the past 4 years wherein YOU disputed the charges with Plaintiff SOUTH DAKOTA BANK which form the basis of Plaintiff’s Complaint.

RESPONSE TO SPECIAL INTERROGATORY NO. 11:

Defendant objects to this interrogatory on the ground that it violates CCP 94(a) in that it exceeds 35, the maximum number of requests therein. Accordingly, defendant is not obligated to respond.

SPECIAL INTERROGATORY NO. 12:

State the name, address, and telephone number of YOUR employer.

RESPONSE TO SPECIAL INTERROGATORY NO.12 :

Defendant objects to this interrogatory on the ground that it is not relevant to the issues in this action. Defendant objects to this interrogatory on the ground that it violates CCP 94(a) in that it exceeds 35, the maximum number of requests therein. Accordingly, defendant is not obligated to respond.

SPECIAL INTERROGATORY NO. 13:

For each and every denial in Plaintiff’s Request for Admissions, state the reason for such denial.

RESPONSE TO SPECIAL INTERROGATORY NO.13:

Defendant objects to this interrogatory on the ground that the request contains subparts in violation of CCP 94(a)(1), and on the ground that it is not separate and complete in and of itself. Defendant further objects to this interrogatory on the ground that it violates CCP 94(a) in that it exceeds 35, the maximum number of requests therein. Accordingly, defendant is not obligated to respond.

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The discovery responses are due to be served on June 13, 2012. In the meantime I have to evaluate their responses to my discovery, and to figure out how to deal with the upcoming arbitration. However, if I mess up with these responses, I might end up in a worse place. I wonder if legal aid had cause for concern. I think they get skittish because I’m dealing with an OC, but then, it depends on whether they can get a qualified witness to authenticate their papers.

I would appreciate feedback and comments. Thanks!

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See post #6 but I would add that, in my opinion, you are talking way too much. Denied, admit, don't recall, allegedly, yes, no and will supplement are about all that I'd use.

Now in summary judgment and motions, cut down some trees for all the paper I will need.

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but I'm definitely taking note of your suggestions. They were so concerned that there would be a motion to compel against me, plus sanctions. I can do the same to the other side, though, because they gave me a lot of objections and excuses with their discovery responses.

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I see what you are saying and I'm far from an expert in California law, but generally speaking you are not going to get hit with sanctions right out of the gate. The other side would have to meet with you and try to work it out, then file a motion to compel, win the motion to compel and then sanctions.

How could they file a motion to compel if you said denied on the admissions and don't have documents on the request for production. As part of a motion to compel in a case where I was the Plaintiff, somewhat by accident I threw in a few where they had said they did not have what I was asking for, not they would get it to me, but did not have.

The judge stated the obvious to me, "I can't compel them to produce something they don't have."

I can somewhat see, don't agree with it, but see the argument on some of the other stuff.

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For me there are three possible ways you can respond to discovery, and choosing is really determined by what your overall strategy for the case is.

1. You can answer as honest Abe would and the case will be over swiftly. (I have never used this one myself)

2. You can be very simple in your answers and simply deny the request for admissions. Most of us file a General Denial to the pleading, so following up with a fairly simple denial isn't a stretch. While I would never advocate lying to the court, who is the last person you have read about that has been sanctioned or thrown in the hoosgow regarding discovery answers in a civil suit. Finally, my general understanding are the answers are based on the date that you answer the discovery. So, not incredible that your recolection could become refreshed by the time you get to trial, if need be.

3. You can be more detailed in your objection and giving them squat, just like they do you when you sent your discovery requests. I bet you got a big ZERO, from them.

I tend to lean on #3 the majority of the time, espiecally if I have a good amount of time to compose the answers.

So YOU need to tell us which of these 3 fits your strategy for your case, then we can make some suggestions.......

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REQUEST FOR ADMISSION NO. 1:

Admit that Defendant ME requested a charge account with Plaintiff SOUTH DAKOTA BANK.

Defendant Objects; This party objects to this request on the grounds that Request for Admission #1 as phrased is argumentative. It requires the adoption of an assumption, which is improper, “requested a charge account”, is assumptive.

Any discovery request that requires the adoption of an assumption is argumentative. This is objectionable as to form. This question assumes facts that may not be true or facts that may not be in evidence, but requires the answer adopt the assumption.

Based on the foregoing objections this party Denies to this Request for Admissions #1. Discovery is ongoing and this party reserves the right to amend and supplement this response as necessary.

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but I'm definitely taking note of your suggestions. They were so concerned that there would be a motion to compel against me, plus sanctions. I can do the same to the other side, though, because they gave me a lot of objections and excuses with their discovery responses.

If you deny when you don't know they cannot compell you.

If you say after diligent search and reasonable inquiry, defendant is unable to formulate and opinion as to the veracity of plaintiff's allegations and therefore denies the paragraph. the same

If you say hmm well I kinda sorta maybe possibly don't know the court will rule for them.

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If you deny when you don't know they cannot compell you.

If you say after diligent search and reasonable inquiry, defendant is unable to formulate and opinion as to the veracity of plaintiff's allegations and therefore denies the paragraph. the same

If you say hmm well I kinda sorta maybe possibly don't know the court will rule for them.

This is basically what I'm talking about also. Take a position and then run with it and argue it until you are blue in face. Leave no door open for them to try and open further.

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For instance, with Admission #1, I could state that I don't have the information, and also, I object to the assumptions in the RFA. That way I can't be compelled to respond because I don't know, and at the same time I am objecting to the way the RFA is presented.

Does this make sense? :confused:

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Defendant is unable to admit or deny this Request. Defendant has made a reasonable inquiry to obtain sufficient information concerning the matter stated in this request, but the information known or readily obtainable to Defendant is insufficient to enable responding party to admit or deny such matter. Based upon the foregoing, Defendant must deny.

Defendant likewise objects to this request on the grounds that Request for Admission #1 as phrased is argumentative. It requires the adoption of an assumption, which is improper, as “requested a charge account”, is assumptive.

Any discovery request that requires the adoption of an assumption is argumentative. This is objectionable as to form. This question assumes facts that may not be true or facts that may not be in evidence, but requires the answer adopt the assumption.

Based on the foregoing objections this party Denies to this Request for Admissions #1. Discovery is ongoing and this party reserves the right to amend and supplement this response as necessary.

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I came across some information issued by the San Diego Public Law Library, which states that "Form interrogatories do not count toward the statutory 35 limit to interrogatories (See CCP 2030.030 (a)(2))."

I did a count of plaintiff's discovery, and they did follow this count. My discovery was over by one. And my subparts approach to Special Rogs 4 and 5 had to be stretched to include all the affirmative defenses listed, otherwise there would have been a whole bunch of questions that still fit within the 35 limit.

This feels like a narrow escape. I'm surprised that legal aid didn't catch this. They counted the form rogs, too, even if these are not included in the count.

Now to keep researching to keep from falling into another trap!

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explain them with an eye towards violations of FDCPA, rosenthal, and such.

so taking the response you said about failure to state a claim- Responding Party asserted a number of affirmative defenses on information and belief in order to preserve the defenses should discovery and investigation reveal circumstances supporting the affirmative defenses. Defendant has made a reasonable inquiry to obtain sufficient information concerning the matter stated in the interrogatory, but the information known or readily obtainable by the Defendant is insufficient to enable the Defendant to respond to the interrogatory. Discovery, investigation and research of the applicable law is continuing and further information responsive to the request may become available upon seeing plaintiff’s presentation of evidence at trial, therefore defendant reserves the right to amend her RESP. to add further details of her defense as they become available.

and morphing it into a weapon-Responding Party asserted a number of VALID affirmative defenses. Defendant has made a reasonable inquiry to obtain information concerning the matter stated in the interrogatory, but the information known or readily obtainable by the Defendant is insufficient to enable the Defendant to respond to the interrogatory. Plaintiff's responses to propounded Discovery have been evasive, improper, and specifically do not provide the information necessary to support their contentions nor their claims, defendant is continuing to investigate the circumstances of plaintiff's alleged account and the circumstances of their failure to give every single document involved with the alleged account at issue. Efforts are continuing to investigate this matter, defendant will augment this response when further details become available.

You see instead of a shield you have sharpened the edge of it to make a slicer.

that will be a good way to think.

and personally, you need to drop the perils of pauline and summon up Annie Oakely. Embrace your inner Bitch and emasculate the attorneys, bring in to question their professional conduct. That is what attorneys are for to get kicked in the sack for their client,

Think Nancy Grace, Greta Van Susterne, and Judge Jeanine all rolled up into one.

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well, whoever has been helping in composing my discovery responses.

Thanks, Skippy, I've bookmarked the link and will study it closely.

Seadragon, I love your imagery about perils of pauline vis a vis Annie Oakley! I always thought that a vigorous defense was the norm, and felt cornered with the attitude from legal aid. It really made me wonder whose side they're on. :roll:

I'm adopting your version of a sharpened shield, and will add to it if my brain gets a little more active. :D

Sorry, can't identify the personalities you refer to, as I don't watch teevee. :lol:

I wish everybody a great Memorial Day weekend! We are, in our own little way, fighting for freedom against exploitation, oppression, and injustice.

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well, whoever has been helping in composing my discovery responses.

Thanks, Skippy, I've bookmarked the link and will study it closely.

Seadragon, I love your imagery about perils of pauline vis a vis Annie Oakley! I always thought that a vigorous defense was the norm, and felt cornered with the attitude from legal aid. It really made me wonder whose side they're on. :roll:

I'm adopting your version of a sharpened shield, and will add to it if my brain gets a little more active. :D

Sorry, can't identify the personalities you refer to, as I don't watch teevee. :lol:

I wish everybody a great Memorial Day weekend! We are, in our own little way, fighting for freedom against exploitation, oppression, and injustice.

Those three will help with your demeanor. And letting you know that girls wear skirts yes but CIC girls have pistols under theirs.(and no I am not inferring that they have male anatomy you dirty minded people)(but it would be ok if they did)(maybe I should just shut my yap on that)

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  • 2 weeks later...

Hello again,

I've added objections to my discovery responses, although I followed them up with my answers. It's grown to umpteen pages, but Skippy's link says it's better to have many objections than to miss an important one. I'd love to hear what you think of my responses to admission requests:

ME

ADDRESS

TEL. NO.

Defendant In Pro Per

SUPERIOR COURT OF THE STATE OF CALIFORNIA

COUNTY OF ____________

SOUTH DAKOTA BANK,

Plaintiff,

v.

ME, et al.,

Defendant(s). Case No.: ____________

(Limited Civil Case)

DEFENDANT’S RESPONSE TO PLAINTIFF’S REQUEST FOR ADMISSIONS

(SET ONE)

REQUEST FOR ADMISSIONS TO: ME

PROPOUNDED BY: SOUTH DAKOTA BANK

SET NUMBER: ONE

REQUEST FOR ADMISSION NO.1:

Admit that Defendant ME requested a charge account with Plaintiff SOUTH DAKOTA BANK.

RESPONSE TO REQUEST FOR ADMISSION NO.1:

Defendant objects to this request on the grounds that Request for Admission No.1 as phrased is argumentative and is objectionable as to form. It requires the adoption of an assumption, which is improper, as “requested a charge account”, is assumptive, and assumes facts that may not be true or facts that may not be in evidence, but requires the answer adopt the assumption.

Defendant further objects that Request for Admission No. 1 is improper and in violation of Code of Civil Procedure section 2030.060 subdivision (d). “Definitions are proper, but must appear in the interrogatory itself. There are no definitions related to “charge account” or “Plaintiff _____” in Request for Admission No. 1.

Furthermore, Defendant objects to this request because the information sought, if indeed it exists, is equally available to propounding party (CCP 2030.220 © and Alpine Mutual Water Co. v. Superior Court (1968) 259 Cal.App.2d 45 [66 Cal.Rptr. 250].

Subject to and without waiving said objections, Defendant responds as follows: Defendant is unable to admit or deny this Request. Defendant has made a reasonable inquiry to obtain sufficient information concerning the matter stated in this request, but the information known or readily obtainable to Defendant is insufficient to enable responding party to admit or deny such matter. To the best of Defendant’s memory, and without any proof provided by Plaintiff establishing the existence of the alleged charge account, Defendant does not remember requesting such alleged charge account with Plaintiff SOUTH DAKOTA BANK.

Based upon the foregoing. Defendant DENIES this request in its entirety. Discovery is ongoing and this party reserves the right to amend and supplement this response as necessary.

REQUEST FOR ADMISSION NO. 2:

Admit that Plaintiff _________ issued a charge account number XXXX to Defendant ME.

RESPONSE TO REQUEST FOR ADMISSION NO. 2:

Defendant objects to this request on the grounds that Request for Admission No. 2 as phrased is argumentative and is objectionable as to form. It requires the adoption of an assumption, which is improper, as “issued a charge account number XXXX,” is assumptive, and assumes facts that may not be true or facts that may not be in evidence, but requires the answer adopt the assumption.

Defendant further objects that Request for Admission No. 2 is improper and in violation of Code of Civil Procedure section 2030.060 subdivision (d). “Definitions are proper, but must appear in the interrogatory itself. There are no definitions related to “charge account number “XXXX” or “Plaintiff _________” in Request for Admission No. 2.

Furthermore, Defendant objects to this request because the information sought, if indeed it exists, is equally available to propounding party (CCP 2030.220 © and Alpine Mutual Water Co. v. Superior Court (1968) 259 Cal.App.2d 45 [66 Cal.Rptr. 250].

Subject to and without waiving said objections, Defendant responds as follows: Defendant is unable to admit or deny this Request. Defendant has made a reasonable inquiry to obtain sufficient information concerning the matter stated in this request, but the information known or readily obtainable to Defendant is insufficient to enable responding party to admit or deny such matter. To the best of Defendant’s memory, and without any proof provided by Plaintiff establishing the existence of alleged charge account number XXXX, Defendant does not remember that Plaintiff SOUTH DAKOTA BANK issued such alleged charge account number XXXX to Defendant.

Based upon the foregoing. Defendant DENIES this request in its entirety. Discovery is ongoing and this party reserves the right to amend and supplement this response as necessary.

REQUEST FOR ADMISSION NO. 3:

Admit that Defendant ME entered into a contract with Plaintiff ________.

RESPONSE TO REQUEST FOR ADMISSION NO. 3:

Defendant objects to this request on the grounds that Request for Admission No. 3 as phrased is argumentative and is objectionable as to form. It requires the adoption of an assumption, which is improper, as “entered into a contract,” is assumptive, and assumes facts that may not be true or facts that may not be in evidence, but requires the answer adopt the assumption.

Defendant further objects that Request for Admission No. 3 is improper and in violation of Code of Civil Procedure section 2030.060 subdivision (d). “Definitions are proper, but must appear in the interrogatory itself. There are no definitions related to “contract” or “Plaintiff _______” in Request for Admission No. 3.

Furthermore, Defendant objects to this request because the information sought, if indeed it exists, is equally available to propounding party (CCP 2030.220 © and Alpine Mutual Water Co. v. Superior Court (1968) 259 Cal.App.2d 45 [66 Cal.Rptr. 250].

Subject to and without waiving said objections, Defendant responds as follows: Defendant is unable to admit or deny this Request. Defendant has made a reasonable inquiry to obtain sufficient information concerning the matter stated in this request, but the information known or readily obtainable to Defendant is insufficient to enable responding party to admit or deny such matter. To the best of Defendant’s memory, and without any proof provided by Plaintiff establishing the existence of an alleged contract, Defendant has no recollection of entering into such alleged contract with Plaintiff SOUTH DAKOTA BANK.

Based upon the foregoing. Defendant DENIES this request in its entirety. Discovery is ongoing and this party reserves the right to amend and supplement this response as necessary.

REQUEST FOR ADMISSION NO. 4:

Admit that Defendant ME used the charge account number XXXX issued by Plaintiff ______.

RESPONSE TO REQUEST FOR ADMISSION NO. 4:

Defendant objects to this request on the grounds that Request for Admission No. 4 as phrased is argumentative and is objectionable as to form. It requires the adoption of an assumption, which is improper, as “used the charge account number XXXX” is assumptive, and assumes facts that may not be true or facts that may not be in evidence, but requires the answer adopt the assumption.

Defendant further objects that Request for Admission No. 4 is improper and in violation of Code of Civil Procedure section 2030.060 subdivision (d). “Definitions are proper, but must appear in the interrogatory itself. There are no definitions related to “charge account number XXXX” or “Plaintiff ______” in Request for Admission No. 4.

Furthermore, Defendant objects to this request because the information sought, if indeed it exists, is equally available to propounding party (CCP 2030.220 © and Alpine Mutual Water Co. v. Superior Court (1968) 259 Cal.App.2d 45 [66 Cal.Rptr. 250].

Subject to and without waiving said objections, Defendant responds as follows: Defendant is unable to admit or deny this Request. Defendant has made a reasonable inquiry to obtain sufficient information concerning the matter stated in this request, but the information known or readily obtainable to Defendant is insufficient to enable responding party to admit or deny such matter. To the best of Defendant’s memory, and without any proof provided by Plaintiff of the existence neither of alleged charge account number XXX nor of any alleged use by Defendant of the alleged charge account number XXXX, Defendant has no recollection of using the alleged charge account number XXXX.

Based upon the foregoing. Defendant DENIES this request in its entirety. Discovery is ongoing and this party reserves the right to amend and supplement this response as necessary.

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REQUEST FOR ADMISSION NO. 5:

Admit that Defendant ME agreed to pay Plaintiff for charges made on the charge account number XXXX.

RESPONSE TO REQUEST FOR ADMISSION NO. 5:

Defendant objects to this request on the grounds that Request for Admission No. 5 as phrased is argumentative and is objectionable as to form. It requires the adoption of an assumption, which is improper, as “agreed to pay Plaintiff for charges made on the charge account number XXXX,” is assumptive, and assumes facts that may not be true or facts that may not be in evidence, but requires the answer adopt the assumption.

Defendant further objects that Request for Admission No. 5 is improper and in violation of Code of Civil Procedure section 2030.060 subdivision (d). “Definitions are proper, but must appear in the interrogatory itself. There are no definitions related to “charges made on the charge account number XXXX” in Request for Admission No. 5.

Furthermore, Defendant objects to this request because the information sought, if indeed it exists, is equally available to propounding party (CCP 2030.220 © and Alpine Mutual Water Co. v. Superior Court (1968) 259 Cal.App.2d 45 [66 Cal.Rptr. 250].

Subject to and without waiving said objections, Defendant responds as follows: Defendant is unable to admit or deny this Request. Defendant has made a reasonable inquiry to obtain sufficient information concerning the matter stated in this request, but the information known or readily obtainable to Defendant is insufficient to enable responding party to admit or deny such matter. Plaintiff has failed to provide evidence of the existence of the alleged charge account number XXXX, the existence of any contract, or the existence of any alleged agreement to pay, and Defendant has no recollection of any alleged agreement to pay Plaintiff SOUTH DAKOTA BANK for alleged charges made on alleged charge account number XXXX.

Based upon the foregoing. Defendant DENIES this request in its entirety. Discovery is ongoing and this party reserves the right to amend and supplement this response as necessary.

REQUEST FOR ADMISSION 6:

Admit that as a result of using the charge account Defendant ME became indebted to Plaintiff _____ in the principal sum of $4,XXX.

RESPONSE TO REQUEST FOR ADMISSION NO. 6:

Defendant objects to this request on the grounds that Request for Admission No. 6 as phrased is argumentative and is objectionable as to form. It requires the adoption of an assumption, which is improper, as “as a result of using the charge account Defendant ME became indebted to Plaintiff ______ in the principal sum of $4XXX,” is assumptive, and assumes facts that may not be true or facts that may not be in evidence, but requires the answer adopt the assumption.

Defendant further objects that Request for Admission No. 1 is improper and in violation of Code of Civil Procedure section 2030.060 subdivision (d). “Definitions are proper, but must appear in the interrogatory itself. There are no definitions related to “charge account” or “Plaintiff Target” in Request for Admission No. 6.

Furthermore, Defendant objects to this request because the information sought, if indeed it exists, is equally available to propounding party (CCP 2030.220 © and Alpine Mutual Water Co. v. Superior Court (1968) 259 Cal.App.2d 45 [66 Cal.Rptr. 250].

Further still, Defendant objects that this request calls for a legal conclusion best left to the trier of fact. Plaintiff has provided no admissible evidence to support the alleged balance amount claimed in the Complaint.

Subject to and without waiving said objections, Defendant responds as follows: Defendant is unable to admit or deny this Request. Defendant has made a reasonable inquiry to obtain sufficient information concerning the matter stated in this request, but the information known or readily obtainable to Defendant is insufficient to enable responding party to admit or deny such matter. To the best of Defendant’s memory, and without any proof provided by Plaintiff of the existence neither of the alleged charge account nor of any alleged obligations due thereon, Defendant does not recall any such alleged indebtedness to Plaintiff TARGET NATIONAL BANK.

Based upon the foregoing. Defendant DENIES this request in its entirety. Discovery is ongoing and this party reserves the right to amend and supplement this response as necessary.

REQUEST FOR ADMISSION NO. 7:

Admit that Defendant ME never reported charge account number XXXX as “lost” or “stolen” to Plaintiff _______.

RESPONSE TO REQUEST FOR ADMISSION NO. 7:

Defendant objects to this request on the grounds that Request for Admission No. 7 as phrased is argumentative and is objectionable as to form. It requires the adoption of an assumption, which is improper, as “charge account number XXXX” is assumptive, and assumes facts that may not be true or facts that may not be in evidence, but requires the answer adopt the assumption. The same applies to “never reported charge account number XXXX as “lost” or “stolen” to Plaintiff ______.”

Defendant further objects that Request for Admission No. 7 is improper and in violation of Code of Civil Procedure section 2030.060 subdivision (d). “Definitions are proper, but must appear in the interrogatory itself. There are no definitions related to “charge account number XXXX” or “Plaintiff _____” in Request for Admission No. 7.

Furthermore, Defendant objects to this request because the information sought, if indeed it exists, is equally available to propounding party (CCP 2030.220 © and Alpine Mutual Water Co. v. Superior Court (1968) 259 Cal.App.2d 45 [66 Cal.Rptr. 250].

Subject to and without waiving said objections, Defendant responds as follows: Defendant is unable to admit or deny this Request. Defendant has made a reasonable inquiry to obtain sufficient information concerning the matter stated in this request, but the information known or readily obtainable to Defendant is insufficient to enable responding party to admit or deny such matter. To the best of Defendant’s memory, and without any proof provided by Plaintiff of the existence neither of the alleged charge account number XXXX nor of the alleged indebtedness, Defendant has no recollection of ever having had any occasion to make any such reports to Plaintiff SOUTH DAKOTA BANK.

Based upon the foregoing. Defendant ADMITS in part, in that Defendant DENIES having the alleged charge account to begin with, and would have had no occasion to make any reports about it. Discovery is ongoing and this party reserves the right to amend and supplement this response as necessary.

REQUEST FOR ADMISSION NO. 8:

Admit that there are no unresolved disputes or other issues between Plaintiff ______ and Defendant ME regarding charge account number XXXX.

RESPONSE TO REQUEST FOR ADMISSION NO. 8:

Defendant objects to this request on the grounds that Request for Admission No. 8 as phrased is argumentative and is objectionable as to form. It requires the adoption of an assumption, which is improper, as “no unresolved disputes or other issues” is assumptive, and assumes facts that may not be true or facts that may not be in evidence, but requires the answer adopt the assumption.

Defendant further objects that Request for Admission No. 8 is improper and in violation of Code of Civil Procedure section 2030.060 subdivision (d). “Definitions are proper, but must appear in the interrogatory itself. There are no definitions related to “charge account number XXXX” and “Plaintiff _____” in Request for Admission No. 8.

Furthermore, Defendant objects to this request because the information sought, if indeed it exists, is equally available to propounding party (CCP 2030.220 © and Alpine Mutual Water Co. v. Superior Court (1968) 259 Cal.App.2d 45 [66 Cal.Rptr. 250].

Defendant objects still further, in that this discovery request has, in substance, already been propounded (See Requests for Admission Nos. 1. 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, and 7). Continuous discovery into the same matter constitutes oppression, and Defendant objects on that ground. (Professional Career Colleges v. Superior Court (1989) 207 Cal.App.3d, 490, 493-494 [Cal.Rptr. 5, 7-8].

Subject to and without waiving said objections, Defendant responds as follows: Defendant is unable to admit or deny this Request. Defendant has made a reasonable inquiry to obtain sufficient information concerning the matter stated in this request, but the information known or readily obtainable to Defendant is insufficient to enable responding party to admit or deny such matter. To the best of Defendant’s memory, and without any proof provided by Plaintiff of the existence neither of the alleged charge account number XXXX nor of the alleged indebtedness, Defendant has no information responsive to the subject matter of this request.

Based upon the foregoing. Defendant DENIES this request in its entirety. Discovery is ongoing and this party reserves the right to amend and supplement this response as necessary.

Dated: June __, 2012

By: ___________________________

ME

DEFENDANT IN PRO PER

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