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2 hours ago, calawyer said:
 

Did we do an objection to the declaration in Skates97's thread?  I remember that one because the address was vacant.  If there is no objection posted, let me know.  I might have saved it somewhere.

 

I don't think you should make a big deal about "perjury" in the objection.  But I do think that we should say that they have used the same address in the past and they know it is a vacant address.  That is not being candid with the parties and the court; an obligation imposed upon all lawyers.

 

If the witness shows up at trial, however, you should ask whether the witness told the truth in the declaration that was signed under penalty of perjury.  When the witness says "yes", you whack them hard with all of the false statements.  That would be so much fun.  Just think:  Have you ever been to [vacant address]?  When was the last time?

I've pointed out the discrepancies in the trial brief, but kept everything similar to the one in Skates97's.  The main difference is that the counts were different in that one:  ours is Account Stated and Open Book Account, that one was Account Stated and Breach of Contract.  So I've had to educate myself a bit on the differences and edit accordingly.

The business mentioned in Skates97's trial brief was the same, but the address was different.  They must vacate a lot of units, ha ha ;).  I did make it a point to bring up the third case (that they'd dismissed a few weeks ago):  the address listed there is listed as being the place of business for Portfolio Recovery Associates, and is less than 150 miles from the court house.  The declarant is an employee of Portfolio Recovery Associates.  I wanted to highlight the fact that the Plaintiff might have chosen this other address as a valid location for subpoena if the declarant had supplied it in the CCP 98, but gave us a false one instead.  I'm submitting a copy of the summons in that case as evidence, as well as their letter in response to our demand for a Bill of Particulars, in which they quoted a case from 1896 that mentioned that the penalty for a late submission of the Bill of Particulars might be waived if the submission were made soon after the ten day limit (it has been 154 days from the date of that letter, and we still haven't received it).  We're also submitting the CCP 98, a copy of the declaration of due diligence by our process server (who noted that the residents in the neighboring unit stated that the address given had been vacant for over a month), and some copies of Plaintiff's responses.  I've also found the realtor in charge of renting the vacant address, in case I need to contact them.

We're submitting the Trial Brief's today, sending out the letter on the case "Y" (notifying them of the failed subpoena attempt and intent to motion for exclusion), and plan on filing the Objections on Tuesday (when the letters should have arrived).  I'll take a better look at them soon :)

Honestly (as you and others here know better than I ever will), I doubt that this "witness" will show--if she does, she will most certainly be exposing herself to a very bad situation.  Besides, it might be an all-day trip for her to testify--how much more money could Portfolio Recovery Associates, LLC make by having her sit in the office and continue to pump-out BS documents?

Then again, maybe I'm giving them too much credit...

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19 minutes ago, Anon Amos said:

It is very rare a witness will show, but it has happened.

For a witness to show would require actual work by the JDB and its attorney.   :)   But. I suppose stranger things have happened, right?  

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Update:  the court docket reflect the dismissal of case "X" :)

Quick question--in filing an objection to their CCP 98, do we have to mention everything contained therein separately or can we just object to it as a whole (given that they gave us a fake address for subpoena)?

 

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8 hours ago, Inundated said:

Update:  the court docket reflect the dismissal of case "X" :)

Quick question--in filing an objection to their CCP 98, do we have to mention everything contained therein separately or can we just object to it as a whole (given that they gave us a fake address for subpoena)?

 

Your objection to it is that it is hearsay and you subpoenaed the witness . You can object to it in its entirety rather than line for line.

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So this is where we're at:

We've submitted our objection to the Plaintiff's Testimony in Lieu of Personal Testimony at Trial.  At our locale, they preferred that it be titled "Motion in Limine #1."  But I did not fail by labeling it as accurately as I could.

It turns out that there was very little that needed to be done between Skate97's declaration and our own.  More than anything else, I've overworked it because of nerves:  the local rules wanted things in a certain format, and it was different than most of the trial briefs/motions that I've emulated from these forums.  It's important to pay attention to those.

At this point, I've done all that I could and it's up to my wife at trial.  I just wanted all of you to know that this is probably the case of the person that you imagine yourselves helping when you dedicate your time to answering our questions:  before we were married a little over a year ago, my wife was a single mother supporting three kids, an impending grandchild, her mother, her sister, her brother-in-law, and two of her nephews.  A year before that she'd had another sister, along with another nephew and two nieces to support. She has never been the type to utter a word of complaint--instead, all of her effort has been spent in trying to figure out how she could make it work.  Point of fact, neither she nor I are "rich," in any sense of the word.  If we solely had 3 children, we might be called "middle class."

If you have any advice for her at trial, please let her know.

I see these possible scenarios:

1.  They dismiss the trial.

2.  They attempt to push the trial forward without any evidence beyond the two bank statements submitted in the original complaint.

3.  They bring the witness that supplied us with the fake address to trial.

4.  They bring some other witness mentioned in their "statement of witnesses and evidence" list.

5.  Our judge doesn't grant our objection to the CCP 98, despite the fake address.

 
Response:

Scenario 1:  happens if it happens.

Scenario 2:  Object to everything on the basis that it's hearsay.

Scenario 3:  Grill the witness to absolute death.

Scenario 4:  Point out the fact that this witness does not have personal knowledge of the account?

Scenario 5:  Lose, and file an appeal.

 

If any of you have some good advice for her, please let us know.  She's educating herself on various applicable cases.  I've also found a good "overall strategy" paper by Clinton Rooney:  www.courts.ca.gov/partners/documents/2011SRL5eRooney.pdf

We've gotten ourselves so invested in this case that we've lost sight of the fact that we will still live if we lose.  The trial is about a week out, and we're prepared to let the chips fall as they may.  No matter how things turn out, we are both indebted to all of you that have shared your knowledge and extended support to us :) 

Best wishes!

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I see these possible scenarios:

1.  They dismiss the trial.

2.  They attempt to push the trial forward without any evidence beyond the two bank statements submitted in the original complaint.

3.  They bring the witness that supplied us with the fake address to trial.

4.  They bring some other witness mentioned in their "statement of witnesses and evidence" list.

5.  Our judge doesn't grant our objection to the CCP 98, despite the fake address.

 
Response:

Scenario 1:  happens if it happens.  You jump for joy.  Then you recover all of your costs.

Scenario 2:  Object to everything on the basis that it's hearsay.

Scenario 3:  Grill the witness to absolute death.

Scenario 4:  Point out the fact that this witness does not have personal knowledge of the account?  You object to any other witness.  You subpoenad the CCP 98 declarant.  That is the witness who promised to be available for trial at the address noted.  That witness served a declaration and you wanted to impeach THAT witness with his/her statements in the declaration.  THey should not be permitted to call some other witness that they find convenient.  Cant remember if you did a CCP 96 demand, but if so, that should may be another ground to exclude another witness.

Scenario 5:  Lose, and file an appeal.

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Update:  we've received notice that they intend to dismiss the case!

The docket hasn't been updated yet, and we intend to go down there unless it is...but they've dismissed the two prior without incident, so we're hoping they don't try to do anything silly with this one.

When I just jumped into this thread to give the news and saw your avatars, I actually got a little choked up, ha ha.  I'm really not the emotional type, but this has been like a lingering icicle working its way toward our hearts for six months now...and all of you gave us hope and direction when we thought there was none.

I cannot thank all of you enough, on behalf of myself and my wife.

I don't want to get ahead of myself--until we see the actual dismissal go through, we're still preparing.  But reading that letter took has taken a little edge off the dread that has been hanging over us this entire holiday season.

We'll keep you posted :)

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On 12/28/2016 at 9:31 AM, calawyer said:

I see these possible scenarios:

1.  They dismiss the trial.

2.  They attempt to push the trial forward without any evidence beyond the two bank statements submitted in the original complaint.

3.  They bring the witness that supplied us with the fake address to trial.

4.  They bring some other witness mentioned in their "statement of witnesses and evidence" list.

5.  Our judge doesn't grant our objection to the CCP 98, despite the fake address.

 
Response:

Scenario 1:  happens if it happens.  You jump for joy.  Then you recover all of your costs.

Scenario 2:  Object to everything on the basis that it's hearsay.

Scenario 3:  Grill the witness to absolute death.

Scenario 4:  Point out the fact that this witness does not have personal knowledge of the account?  You object to any other witness.  You subpoenad the CCP 98 declarant.  That is the witness who promised to be available for trial at the address noted.  That witness served a declaration and you wanted to impeach THAT witness with his/her statements in the declaration.  THey should not be permitted to call some other witness that they find convenient.  Cant remember if you did a CCP 96 demand, but if so, that should may be another ground to exclude another witness.

Scenario 5:  Lose, and file an appeal.

re Scenario 4:  we did send out a CCP96, to which they replied with a statement of witnesses and evidence that listed three other employees of Portfolio Recovery Associates, LLC, my wife, and the declarant in the original CCP98 (which we received before sending out the CCP 96).  The interesting part was that the address that they listed for the CCP 98 declarant  in their response to our CCP 96 was different than the address that she  gave in the CCP 98, which I pointed out in our trial brief and MIL.  I felt that it indicated (somewhat) that they were purposely being duplicitous.

Thanks again, and we'll keep all of this in mind :)

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On 12/28/2016 at 4:52 PM, Anon Amos said:

If the lawyer says he will dismiss when the judge calls the case and that you can leave, don't leave. Make sure you see the case get dismissed.

 

That sounds like the kind of thing we might have fallen for if it hadn't been mentioned.  Thanks!

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42 minutes ago, Inundated said:

Update:  we've received notice that they intend to dismiss the case!

The docket hasn't been updated yet, and we intend to go down there unless it is...but they've dismissed the two prior without incident, so we're hoping they don't try to do anything silly with this one.

When I just jumped into this thread to give the news and saw your avatars, I actually got a little choked up, ha ha.  I'm really not the emotional type, but this has been like a lingering icicle working its way toward our hearts for six months now...and all of you gave us hope and direction when we thought there was none.

I cannot thank all of you enough, on behalf of myself and my wife.

I don't want to get ahead of myself--until we see the actual dismissal go through, we're still preparing.  But reading that letter took has taken a little edge off the dread that has been hanging over us this entire holiday season.

We'll keep you posted :)

That's great news, congratulations. It helps others if you post these results in the victory thread.

If you do end up going to your trial  date "just in case", and haven't seen it dismissed; bring the notice with you .

Again, congratulations to you both, glad to hear it.

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So we kept our eyes on the docket, and the dismissal never showed up...so we stayed up late last night (well, my wife mostly), preparing for battle.  We printed out the tips that we got in this thread and some of the tips from "Sued by CACH, LLC" (skates97's thread).  I went over everything with my wife, explaining why the evidence was pertinent and what to do in which situation.  And we went down there with the dismissal notice in hand.

We got down to the courthouse about 20 mins early, and saw that the case was still on the docket.  The courtroom was pretty sparse, which I took as a good sign.  One of the first things to happen was that they announced to another person that their case had been dismissed, and that they were free to go home--this wasn't the best feeling, since it gave the impression that our case had not been dismissed as we'd been told.

We watched another case happen before ours--something entirely unrelated to civil litigation, but fascinating regardless.  The judge assigned to our case seemed very professional, in my view--just trying to get to the facts and making it clear to-and-for the law, in the sense that he wanted verbal explanations and gave thorough explanations.  This case drew from the remaining people left in the gallery, until one lawyer came in asking around for someone else.

Our case was called, my wife went up along with this lawyer...and he kind of shrugged in a confused manner and said that his client had over-nighted a dismissal.  The judge said he'd accept a verbal, and that was it :)  It went almost exactly like Skates97's case did!

So everything's done, except for getting the costs back.  I'm going to be researching that over the next couple of days or so.  My wife has already filled out two MC-010's, but I wanted to get back and do a little research before sending them out.  Also, I wanted to see if we could fill out another for the first case that they'd dismissed, if it wasn't too late...

I've already said it, but I'll say it again:  none of this could have been done if it weren't for the kindness, generosity, and (in many cases) sacrifice put forth by all of -you-.  Once I'd read some of CALawyer's work, I'd realized that we'd fallen in league with a master--although I do not know much about the law, the arguments we were setting forth made me feel like a damned genius:  they were graceful, to-the-point, and utterly implacable.  The practical advice from RyanEx and Anon Amos has really done a lot to steel our resolve, because you know when you get that kind of gritty advice that it comes from veterans.  Seadragon's tips, and advice in other threads also formed a great foundation.  Sadinca has been with us throughout, and always seemed to be there when I was most despondent--thank you so much Sadinca!

I've borrowed and nipped from all over the place--ASTMedic's thread, skates97's thread, and many more.  The instructional videos linked by Mr. Chowdury were fantastic, and gave us a great sense of purpose.  

Obviously, we've been up and down.  But in the end, we felt like David beating Goliath three times at his own game.  We prayed on this so many nights and days, when things were down...and we believe that we were answered in that we were led to this forum, and all of you.  So again, thank you so -very- much for helping us with this, from the bottom (and top, and middle) of our hearts :)

And to anyone out there that may feel lost, despondent, hopeless, or completely inundated with everything that's happening...don't lose hope, and don't give up!  The worst thing you can do is nothing, and by simply filing a "general denial," you've already turned the tide in your favor :)

 

P.S.  We'll be sticking around, trying to give back where we can ;)

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Just got home from a double shift to this message. What a great way to end this day, knowing that someone came on top of this!!! 

Great job!!! And kudus to your wife for stepping up to the plate to face them. I know how intimidating that can be. 

Great job and congratulations. 

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Good job and congratulations. Most of the cases are pretty much the same. Defendants that fight back and learn will win most of the time, and the odds are usually in their favor. Before someone points out that defendants do lose, it should be obvious that it does happen at times; but people who don't take risk seldom reap rewards.

Congrats again, and post your victory in the winners thread and get your cost back on both cases.

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I am so proud of you.  It took a lot of hard work but you spent the time necessary to win.  And you beat a lawyer who specializes in debt collection, at his or her own game.  I can't imagine myself being able to beat a teacher or policeman or nuclear scientist and their own game.  But you did it!

I will let Ian know that you found his videos helpful.  He worked hard on them and I know he will be pleased.

 

Again, congrats on your victory!

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you may need to be persistent when trying to get your costs back.

our small-time rural court had never heard of such a thing ina  debt collection case, i gave up on it (yeah i know thats weak, but after battling all these cases, time is money and i was over fighting for the $300

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10 hours ago, qbert said:

you may need to be persistent when trying to get your costs back.

our small-time rural court had never heard of such a thing ina  debt collection case, i gave up on it (yeah i know thats weak, but after battling all these cases, time is money and i was over fighting for the $300

They seemed pretty familiar when we tried to submit ours originally, but we'll deal with any sort of misunderstanding as it comes.  Getting (or not getting) our court fees + costs back is small potatoes after all of this, in terms of what's at stake and level of difficulty :)

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On 1/5/2017 at 8:32 AM, Anon Amos said:

Good job and congratulations. Most of the cases are pretty much the same. Defendants that fight back and learn will win most of the time, and the odds are usually in their favor. Before someone points out that defendants do lose, it should be obvious that it does happen at times; but people who don't take risk seldom reap rewards.

Congrats again, and post your victory in the winners thread and get your cost back on both cases.

Posted a link in the winner's thread :)

I think it goes without saying that defendants will occasionally lose, but the only thing you really risk is the court fees and time.  I'd say the odds of winning far supercede the cost, especially given the high success rate in defense of people that invest the time to do it properly.

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41 minutes ago, Inundated said:

  I'd say the odds of winning far supercede the cost, especially given the high success rate in defense of people that invest the time to do it properly.

This is especially true for defendants in CA lawsuits.  Due to  the knowledgeable CA members here who understand the court rules, CA defendants have a much higher chance of favorable outcomes in court.

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Just a little update:  we received checks for our costs on the last two suits against us.  The one for the case that they'd dismissed in December, not so much.  Still, the two came at a good time...and the last one might have been filed a bit late (over a month after we filed).

We were able to recover the costs for our postage (over a dozen letters sent CMRRR), the subpoena service, the and the initial cost of filing a general denial ($240 in our area, for each case).  Had we filed any motions, we likely would have been reimbursed for those as well. 

The MC-010 forms don't make any allowance for costs related to time lost from work or travel, which is worth noting.  Luckily, my wife has amassed a colossal amount of sick time...but the seven+ 80 mile round-trip visits to the courthouse are pretty much a loss.  Still, it beats the heck out of losing over ~$4500 ;)

There were many times when we wondered whether it was worth the cost to send everything CMRRR, or to risk $60 to, say, file a motion to compel.  If we were to go through this again, I wouldn't spare a penny in our defense...and I wouldn't recommend that anyone else in a similar circumstance do so, either.

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