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California-Responded to a debt collector lawsuit. Then they sent me a Request for Admission. NEED HELP!!


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1. Who is the named Plaintiff in the suit?

LLC

2. What is the name of the law firm handling the suit?                                      

LAW OFFICE 

3. How much are you being sued for? 

$

4. Who is the original creditor?

Fingerhut

5. How do you know you were being sued? 

Served by private party

6. How were you served?

In person 

7. Was the service legal as required by your state? 
Yes

8. what was your correspondence (if any) with the people suing you before you think you were being served?

Nothing. No communication prior to lawsuit.  Last I spoke to fingerhut was April 2018 when I requested credit protection twice from then prior to my surgery with no response.

9. What state and county you live in?

 California

10. When was the last time you paid on this account?

2018

11. What is your SOL on the debt?

4 years

12. What is the status of your case? Suit served? Motion filed? 


Suit served, answered, Hearing for request of MTC, sending back Request for Admission and Form/ Special Interrogatories with objection to all due MTC hearing. Plaintiff opposed and requesting denial of MTC

13.  Have you disputed the debt with the credit bureaus ( both original creditor and collection agency? 
No, collection agency isn’t on my credit

14.  Did you request debt validation before the suit was filed? Note: if you haven’t sent a debt validation request, don’t bother doing it now - it’s too late.

No, didn’t know they bought the debt

15.  How long do you have to respond to the suit? Did you receive a interrogatory (questionnaire) regarding the lawsuit?

Already responded and redacted documents posted

16.  What evidence did they send with the summons? An affidavit? Statements from the OC? Contract? List everything else they attached as exhibits? 
 

They attached (1) statement from
and (1) statement from  and listed them as Attachment 1 and Attachment 2.  An important change to your account page that shows the APR information only Attachment 3 is a statement of account with an adjust to misc Charges of xxxx. A declaration of Jurisdictional fact . 
 

I made contact at the beginning when I got served and tried to negotiate 50% and make payments. they wanted $xxx for 3 months, $xxx for 6 months anything longer will come out to xxxx $610 more than the debt. So I told (without knowing shouldn’t of have )that’ll if you’re mot willing to budge then I’m going to request Arbitration. 

 

**** I sent my answer in for a debt collector lawsuit for a Fingerthut account and now the Lawyer sent me a Request for Admission.  I haven’t filed my MTC Arbitration. Should I do that in leu of answering the request of admission? Or how should I reply to the Request for Admission if Jefferson Capital did not produce anything showing the own the debt. I want them to admit or deny some questions also. All they sent was the statement of last payment and a statement showing the amount they say I owe “closing statement.”

 

****All documents listed below****

Edited by California- WayOverMyHead
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Posted (edited)
On 7/10/2021 at 7:08 PM, Way Over my head Ann said:

I sent my answer in for a debt collector lawsuit for a Fingerthut account and now the Lawyer sent me a Request for Admission.  I haven’t filed my MTC Arbitration. Should I do that in leu of answering the request of admission? Or how should I reply to the Request for Admission if Jefferson Capital did not produce anything showing the own the debt. I want them to admit or deny some questions also. All they sent was the statement of last payment and a statement showing the amount they say I owe “closing statement.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Edited by California- WayOverMyHead
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File an MTC, ASAP.  File it tomorrow if possible.   Send a copy to their attorney   Look up the arbitration threads to see how to do this  

They are trying to bury you in paperwork.  If the case proceeds and you haven’t replied, you lose.  Anything you don’t deny is admitted.  There are deadlines and I don’t know when the deadlines are. 

AFTER you file the MTC, send a response to the attorney   Object to the discovery request on the grounds that you have filed an MTC and this is not the proper venue   By that I mean for every admission you object   Then put something to the effect of without waiving your objection you do not have sufficient knowledge and therefore deny  

For the other open ended requests put the same denial individually  that you object to the request because you filed an MTC and this is no longer the proper venue.   Then state that you reserve the right to amend your answer  

If this goes to arbitration you will have to deal with this again, but hopefully they won’t arbitrate.  

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11 minutes ago, BackFromTheDebt said:

File an MTC, ASAP.  File it tomorrow if possible.   Send a copy to their attorney   Look up the arbitration threads to see how to do this  

They are trying to bury you in paperwork.  If the case proceeds and you haven’t replied, you lose.  Anything you don’t deny is admitted.  There are deadlines and I don’t know when the deadlines are. 

AFTER you file the MTC, send a response to the attorney   Object to the discovery request on the grounds that you have filed an MTC and this is not the proper venue   By that I mean for every admission you object   Then put something to the effect of without waiving your objection you do not have sufficient knowledge and therefore deny  

For the other open ended requests put the same denial individually  that you object to the request because you filed an MTC and this is no longer the proper venue.   Then state that you reserve the right to amend your answer  

If this goes to arbitration you will have to deal with this again, but hopefully they won’t arbitrate.  

Thank you, this was helpful. I will file the MTC first thing tomorrow 

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Posted (edited)
On 7/11/2021 at 8:56 AM, BackFromTheDebt said:

File an MTC, ASAP.  File it tomorrow if possible.   Send a copy to their attorney   Look up the arbitration threads to see how to do this  

They are trying to bury you in paperwork.  If the case proceeds and you haven’t replied, you lose.  Anything you don’t deny is admitted.  There are deadlines and I don’t know when the deadlines are. 

AFTER you file the MTC, send a response to the attorney   Object to the discovery request on the grounds that you have filed an MTC and this is not the proper venue   By that I mean for every admission you object   Then put something to the effect of without waiving your objection you do not have sufficient knowledge and therefore deny  

For the other open ended requests put the same denial individually  that you object to the request because you filed an MTC and this is no longer the proper venue.   Then state that you reserve the right to amend your answer  

If this goes to arbitration you will have to deal with this again, but hopefully they won’t arbitrate.  

Sorry to bother however I want to know if I’m doing this correctly. Please see attachment MTC and card agreement. The agreement is for May 2018. One month after the last payment made. Should I also include the agreement when the card was open? 

 

 

Edited by California- WayOverMyHead
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Posted (edited)
On 7/11/2021 at 6:53 PM, Way Over my head Ann said:

Sorry to bother however I want to know if I’m doing this correctly. Please see attachment MTC and card agreement. The agreement is for May 2018. One month after the last payment made. Should I also include the agreement when the card was open? 

 

 

I also just received the Request for Admission 2 days ago and I filed my answer on 07/02/2021

 

 

Edited by California- WayOverMyHead
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  • 3 weeks later...
Posted (edited)
On 7/12/2021 at 5:21 AM, BackFromTheDebt said:

MTC looks good. 
 

Make sure to include a copy of the cardholder agreement. 
 

Of course send a copy to their attorney.  I recommend certified mail so they can’t claim they never got it. 

I filed  MTC to arbitrate by email which is required in my county. I received a response back with a court date and to send in my documents. I sent my documents in, the MTC and notarized card agreement along with my fee. I also sent a copy to the attorney with the court date. I called the court to confirm delivery and was told it was being rejected due to the date they provided me, the judge will not be available. So I received another date, which now I have to send my documents again with my payment. The plaintiff sent me more documents opposing the arbitration. I did not file with AAA as I was under the impression that I should wait for a judge to grant or deny MTC. Now that I have to file my documents again, should I also file with AAA and submit a copy with MTC Arbitration to the attorney along with the agreement.  Any insight would help. I did a free consultation and was told I should just try to work out a settlement as this is only going to get harder. I don’t have the time and energy for this attorney due to a medical condition.  I feel if arbitration is granted it’s less paperwork For me and more for them. Or my next option would be bankruptcy.  HELP

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Edited by California- WayOverMyHead
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If you want to continue the game, you would submit a reply to the opposition. They gave you a lot of clues as to what was deficient , giving you good framework to build up a stronger one. Looks like you were missing points and authority, evidence, and whatever else they talked about. 

Here is an indepth 'how to' from sacramento court website

https://saclaw.org/wp-content/uploads/sbs-motions-in-civil-cases.pdf

See also here

https://saclaw.org/law-101/discovery-topic/#research

Since they oppose it, that may be the more inconvenient path for them. Still, you should put together a discovery plan. Time to get them to admit things, produce docs, and reply to your questioning. I think you have more of a chance to win with forcing them to prove their case.  Remember they are the plaintif - they have to make the case against you, not your innocence to them. 

You always have the safety escape of bk (if you get it done successfully). So you can play around a bit. If you didnt have the option to BK, they would also know and could be more aggressive. 

You are in a safe position. but you have to hustle to defend yourself if you are pro se

Did you send a response to the admissions and other discovery? You absolutely positively want to answer that within 30 days of them serving it to you. 

If you didnt, read this for a way out

https://saclaw.org/wp-content/uploads/sbs-relief-from-admissions.pdf

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I started off on this journey in a panic and moved forward without doing too much research. After combing through other threads and after receiving the opposition from the Plaintiff, I realized I need to do better. @bff I will continue this. Lucky for me, when the court emailed me back with my date for the MYC hearing, I immediately sent out documentations. I’m glad I called the courts to follow up,  as this is when I found out my documents was going to be rejected due to the date the provided had to be reschedule. Apparently, the Judge will not be in so they rescheduled me for the following week and said resubmit my documents. Now, this will give me a chance to do this right. I’m going to redo my Request for MTC @bff thank you for the links. I actually spent my weekend going through forums and came across saclaw.org. I filled out a Demand to Arbitrate and will be dropping that in the mail along with a fee waiver. Although I don’t think it’s time to do that since the judge haven’t heard the MTC case. I have my responses for Request for Admission and Form/Special Interrogatories already typed out with Objection on the grounds I have Filed MTC and this is no longer the proper venue. Which I will send those out soon. I have 6 days for the Request for Admission and 14 days for Form Interrogatory. Is it to late to send out a Bill of Particular? Also can I send the Plaintiff a request for Admission and is there such a thing if sending the Plaintiff Form Interrogatories?  Any suggestions is welcome.  If all fails then BK is my next option. Due to medical conditions and being off work I did default on credit so I have been thinking heavily on the BK as an options.  
 

I’m also editing my intro to include case questions and answers. 

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BK is an interesting thing.

For some, BK is a godsend.

For others, BK is terrible, and to be avoided except as a very last resort.  

I, personally, was in a situation in which I was heavily in debt but BK would not have been very good.  Fortunately I was able to use a number of strategies, including arbitration, to fight off my debts and get back on my feet.

 

For others, BK is great.  If you are out of work and have lots of unsecured debt, BK may be a great option.  

Or not.

See how this plays out.  If this is your only large debt, and if you can get rid of it, you don't need BK.  

If you have other large debts, and you have some large medical debts, BK might be the way to go.  

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@BackFromTheDebtBK is the last option. I have maybe two more credit cards around the same amount. If I can get through this one then I will try the other two if it arises. Right now I just need to start a new strategy as I see they don’t want Arb due to the expense. Also I know if I hit them with discovery I might be able to walk away with with not paying anything. I just need to figure out how to properly send the request for MTC in the right format. I’m not easily scared so I’ll go toe to toe with them if it goes to trial. I can only win or lose.

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32 minutes ago, California- WayOverMyHead said:

Right now I just need to start a new strategy as I see they don’t want Arb due to the expense.

My case is still pending (in Virginia), but the plaintiff's attorney tried to object to my MTC due to the expense. They claimed it was egregious.

I've read that you can waive your right to arbitration because you engage in litigation/discovery, but my experience (limited to one case so far) has been that the cost isn't a factor because it's in the contract that the plaintiff drafted. You had no real choice in what was put in it, but they had total control (contract of adhesion?)  Also, court precedent says that the party claiming that the cost is egregious or too expensive must prove that they truly can't afford it rather than it's not cost effective in relation to the amount owed.

At the last court case, the local lawyer that represented the actual firm suing me must have thought they were stretching it a bit because he wouldn't even mention their objections.  After listening to the case history, the judge (the 4th one that had heard my motion) understood that they were trying to break their own contract. He still didn't grant my MTC, but he did put in the case notes that he wanted to dismiss the case that day and would strongly consider dismissing on the next date if the plaintiff did not make meaningful effort to engage in arbitration. Currently, they are ignoring the 11th bill that JAMS has sent them.  I'm guessing I'll get a dismissal in a few months.

The most they've done so far is offer to settle at 45% of the amount they're suing for.

 

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10 hours ago, California- WayOverMyHead said:

I started off on this journey in a panic and moved forward without doing too much research. After combing through other threads and after receiving the opposition from the Plaintiff, I realized I need to do better. @bff I will continue this. Lucky for me, when the court emailed me back with my date for the MYC hearing, I immediately sent out documentations. I’m glad I called the courts to follow up,  as this is when I found out my documents was going to be rejected due to the date the provided had to be reschedule. Apparently, the Judge will not be in so they rescheduled me for the following week and said resubmit my documents. Now, this will give me a chance to do this right. I’m going to redo my Request for MTC @bff thank you for the links. I actually spent my weekend going through forums and came across saclaw.org. I filled out a Demand to Arbitrate and will be dropping that in the mail along with a fee waiver. Although I don’t think it’s time to do that since the judge haven’t heard the MTC case. I have my responses for Request for Admission and Form/Special Interrogatories already typed out with Objection on the grounds I have Filed MTC and this is no longer the proper venue. Which I will send those out soon. I have 6 days for the Request for Admission and 14 days for Form Interrogatory. Is it to late to send out a Bill of Particular? Also can I send the Plaintiff a request for Admission and is there such a thing if sending the Plaintiff Form Interrogatories?  Any suggestions is welcome.  If all fails then BK is my next option. Due to medical conditions and being off work I did default on credit so I have been thinking heavily on the BK as an options.  
 

I’m also editing my intro to include case questions and answers. 

We are on the same kind of journey. Everyone ends up here more or less the same -- can no longer service debts, dont pay them, then get sued. Think about BK, etc. When i got my summons i thought i had to immediate file for BK before even answering. I was in a panic for that 30 day period to respond! But that made me learn SO much about the BK process, and civil actions. In short, I found BK is the very last resort for me. Not only because of the stain of on the record, but because its not 100% certain as the so called 'bk attorneys' where pitching it. I suggest you look at bkforums.com . They are an EXCELLENT resource to ask question.

The most important thing to understand about BK is this: The moment you sign your 'voluntary' petition for BK, the  trustee 100% owns everything of yours...this trustee is just another lawyer who actually represents the creditors...and you give them incredible power to not only own but probe into all your financial moves prior to 90 to 6 months (or more) are under extreme scrutiny. In fact, if you dont 'plan' it right, it can backfire and you can be thrown into chap 13..which essentially is paying every month for 60 months (i think) on your debts.

Hence the best time to declare BK is when you are truly broke, and out of work AND CAN PROPERLY DOCUMENT IT. So if you are serious about BK, then start to pretend-to-apply for it today. Do the BK as a pro se, and see the mountain of paperwork, and scheduling. This will make you extremely prepared to meet with a bk lawyer or, if you are ready, file it yourself. 

---------

Okay with that said, i suggest you immediately read this online resource which is given graciously for free online

https://library.nclc.org/ca/020101

In particular, pay attention to chapters 1-5. There is an excellent section on request for admissions. https://library.nclc.org/ca/0402020201

"One option is to neither admit nor deny the statement specified in the request for admissions. Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 36 allows the consumer to state in detail why the answering party cannot truthfully admit or deny the matter. For example, the consumer cannot truthfully deny or admit a fact if the consumer has no records or no recollection of that fact. The consumer cannot be expected to admit or deny information outside the consumer’s control or about which the consumer has no personal knowledge.21"

So for example, look at this question they gave you:

"[you admit] that this account has been assigned to plaintiff'

You could truthfully answer that you cant not admit nor deny because you have no record to prove that your account was assigned to the plaintiff right? 

Yet, this very admission in one sentence gives the collector legal standing to collect the debt. So THAT is what you have to attack first.

You basically have to attack all the presumptions here - that this collector is even liscensed to practice, that the account was assigned and the proper proof, that the sum demanded is not correct, that there is no original contract,  etc, etc. You attack each and every necessary evidence THEY need to prove (not you). What is all that evidence? Ah, well, THAT is what is in that collections action text. You will get LOTS AND LOTS of avenues of attack.

After you read that collections treasties, your eyes will 'open' and you will see every single one of those questions was carefully designed for them to have you ADMIT their case for them. Remember 'admit' means to agree but it also means 'to allow inside' (in otherwords your admission is ADMITTING evidence for them)

Dont give them ANY evidence. Remember the spirit of the 5th! 'No person shall be held to answer for a capital, or otherwise infamous crime, unless on a presentment or indictment of a Grand Jury, except in cases arising in the land or naval forces, or in the Militia, when in actual service in time of War or public danger; nor shall any person be subject for the same offence to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb; nor shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself, nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation.'

(yes this is not a criminal case, but the idea is the same...do not witness against yourself which is exactly what the request for admissions and interrogatories are for)

Its work. A lot of work. But we have advantages they dont. First, we are the only ones who will sweat night and day over the case while they will just assign it from one employee to the next to some renta-lawyer. Your time is 'free' theirs is always expensive. BURY THEM WITH DISCOVERY ;)

The second is we have the internet. So its just a matter of finding all the pieces to the puzzle and presenting and demanding a strong defense. 

Dont be surprised if you become a legal researcher / paralegal after this experience. Consider all of this a legal education that you could very well one day (soon) charge $$$ to local firms on how to plead, research, etc.

Lastly, while all this sounds good in theory, always remember we are dealing with rubber stamping judges. All you need to do is read the appeals cases on google scholar and find how one appeal judge after another almost NEVER support the consumer with demands for evidence. Its pathetic and sad how corrupt it is. So thats why you keep the BK in your back pocket ready to go as your last hope. But in the meantime fight and hope they will give up after you pull down their pants to show their clown drawers.

 

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15 hours ago, shadow99 said:

My case is still pending (in Virginia), but the plaintiff's attorney tried to object to my MTC due to the expense. They claimed it was egregious.

I've read that you can waive your right to arbitration because you engage in litigation/discovery, but my experience (limited to one case so far) has been that the cost isn't a factor because it's in the contract that the plaintiff drafted. You had no real choice in what was put in it, but they had total control (contract of adhesion?)  Also, court precedent says that the party claiming that the cost is egregious or too expensive must prove that they truly can't afford it rather than it's not cost effective in relation to the amount owed.

At the last court case, the local lawyer that represented the actual firm suing me must have thought they were stretching it a bit because he wouldn't even mention their objections.  After listening to the case history, the judge (the 4th one that had heard my motion) understood that they were trying to break their own contract. He still didn't grant my MTC, but he did put in the case notes that he wanted to dismiss the case that day and would strongly consider dismissing on the next date if the plaintiff did not make meaningful effort to engage in arbitration. Currently, they are ignoring the 11th bill that JAMS has sent them.  I'm guessing I'll get a dismissal in a few months.

The most they've done so far is offer to settle at 45% of the amount they're suing for.

 

We see the complaint about the expense of arbitration many times.  
 

Your approach was correct.  The OC put arbitration in the contract. Coming in later and saying it’s not fair means they want to throw out their own contract, violating a Supreme Court ruling.  

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Thank you everyone for chiming in.  Could anyone point me to a thread that talks about a Plaintiff opposing a Defendant request to Arbitrate? I also redid my request and sent the Plaintiff a Memorandum and Points, also sent a copy to the court. Do you think they would accept it. After they told me I needed to re-send my information, I noticed they uploaded the documents. A little confused 

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  • California- WayOverMyHead changed the title to California-Responded to a debt collector lawsuit. Then they sent me a Request for Admission. NEED HELP!!
11 hours ago, California- WayOverMyHead said:

Thank you everyone for chiming in.  Could anyone point me to a thread that talks about a Plaintiff opposing a Defendant request to Arbitrate? I also redid my request and sent the Plaintiff a Memorandum and Points, also sent a copy to the court. Do you think they would accept it. After they told me I needed to re-send my information, I noticed they uploaded the documents. A little confused 

I'm sure there are other/better threads, but mine does.

 

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11 hours ago, California- WayOverMyHead said:

Thank you everyone for chiming in.  Could anyone point me to a thread that talks about a Plaintiff opposing a Defendant request to Arbitrate? I also redid my request and sent the Plaintiff a Memorandum and Points, also sent a copy to the court. Do you think they would accept it. After they told me I needed to re-send my information, I noticed they uploaded the documents. A little confused 

The opposition states that you didn’t include evidence or support for your motion.  Did you include a copy of the cardmember agreement with the arbitration provision?  What exactly did you say in your MTC?

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39 minutes ago, BV80 said:

The opposition states that you didn’t include evidence or support for your motion.  Did you include a copy of the cardmember agreement with the arbitration provision?  What exactly did you say in your MTC?

I included a notarized copy of the Agreement. The first MTC request was simple. I pointed out parts of the Agreement and included CCP part 3 Tirle 9, Chapter 2, section 1281, 1281.1 and 1281.2.  I did not include a memorandum Points and Authorities. However since I had to resend my request, I included a  Memorandum. I cited cases especially a case where in California a Demand For Arbitration is not required. Now the only argument they would have is the timing and their so called delaying tactic. I’m combing through the Internet trying to locate cases to use in my opposition. Unfortunately my time is very limited due to fatigued from condition and work. But I am pushing through so I can make this argument to where the judge should grant the MTC.

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32 minutes ago, California- WayOverMyHead said:

I included a notarized copy of the Agreement. The first MTC request was simple. I pointed out parts of the Agreement and included CCP part 3 Tirle 9, Chapter 2, section 1281, 1281.1 and 1281.2.  I did not include a memorandum Points and Authorities. However since I had to resend my request, I included a  Memorandum. I cited cases especially a case where in California a Demand For Arbitration is not required. Now the only argument they would have is the timing and their so called delaying tactic. I’m combing through the Internet trying to locate cases to use in my opposition. Unfortunately my time is very limited due to fatigued from condition and work. But I am pushing through so I can make this argument to where the judge should grant the MTC.

This sample MTC includes case law from the United States Supreme Court.

https://www.creditinfocenter.com/community/topic/329436-arbitration-overview-and-strategy-2018-most-up-to-date-info/

Note that if your agreement states that the arbitration provision is governed by the Federal Arbitration Act, the U.S. Supreme Court rulings are important. 

I might include that they claim to have purchased the account in question which includes an agreement with an arbitration provision.  Their opposition contains no evidence that a purchaser of defaulted accounts can change the terms of the account agreements.   Since they claim to own the account, they must abide by the arbitration provision contained in the agreement they claim to have purchased.

See if this CA case law helps.

California law, like federal law, favors enforcement of valid arbitration agreements." (Armendariz v. Foundation Health Psychcare Services, Inc. (2000) 24 Cal.4th 83, 97; accord, Aanderud v. Superior Court (2017) 13 Cal.App.5th 880, 889 (Aanderud).) As a result of this "`strong public policy in favor of arbitration[,] . . . any doubts regarding the arbitrability of a dispute are resolved in favor of arbitration.'" (Aanderud, at p. 890; accord, Moses H. Cone Memorial Hosp. v. Mercury Constr. Corp. (1983) 460 U.S. 1, 24-25.)

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35 minutes ago, BV80 said:

This sample MTC includes case law from the United States Supreme Court.

https://www.creditinfocenter.com/community/topic/329436-arbitration-overview-and-strategy-2018-most-up-to-date-info/

Note that if your agreement states that the arbitration provision is governed by the Federal Arbitration Act, the U.S. Supreme Court rulings are important. 

I might include that they claim to have purchased the account in question which includes an agreement with an arbitration provision.  Their opposition contains no evidence that a purchaser of defaulted accounts can change the terms of the account agreements.   Since they claim to own the account, they must abide by the arbitration provision contained in the agreement they claim to have purchased.

See if this CA case law helps.

California law, like federal law, favors enforcement of valid arbitration agreements." (Armendariz v. Foundation Health Psychcare Services, Inc. (2000) 24 Cal.4th 83, 97; accord, Aanderud v. Superior Court (2017) 13 Cal.App.5th 880, 889 (Aanderud).) As a result of this "`strong public policy in favor of arbitration[,] . . . any doubts regarding the arbitrability of a dispute are resolved in favor of arbitration.'" (Aanderud, at p. 890; accord, Moses H. Cone Memorial Hosp. v. Mercury Constr. Corp. (1983) 460 U.S. 1, 24-25.)

Thank you for the information. This is definitely appreciated.  I’m looking up all the cases they included on their opposition so I attach them. 
 

Thank you again!

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I'd like to add a few things based on my personal experience.

First, for an inexperienced pro se defendant, almost everything sent by the plaintiff's attorney looks intimidating and like it should be open & shut in their favor.  If you take a minute to breathe and calm down, then take it point by point, it's not so bad. The members of this board were so wonderful in helping me do just that and many were so gracious in looking at the objections and my arbitration agreement point by point. Mere words can not express how grateful I am that people here took the time to do that for me.

I may have been very lucky, but my case has been before 4 judges so far since they seem have them on rotation at my court. On one hand, it took until the 4th court date for the judge to lose patience with them.  On the other hand, all 4 judges recognized my right to arbitration without me having to say much more than the contract allows for it. The last judge that started to lose patience brought up dismissal all on his own.

Second, one of the best pieces of knowledge I have obtained here was that these JDBs are just cranking through cases and not paying a lot of attention. Plus, they probably weren't at the top of their class, meaning they're not the best & the brightest attorneys out there. They're mostly just trying to make a quick buck on low hanging fruit with default judgements, so if you stick with it and learn how to respond to them, your chances of at least getting the court to agree that you have the right to arbitration are pretty good.

That being said, I've seen threads on here where people got steamrolled at court. I don't know if they weren't good at speaking up for themselves or if the judge just didn't want to listen to them.  If that was me, I'd do whatever I could to appeal the case. I know that can mean you have to put up the whole amount as a bond or something - I'm still trying to figure that part out for Virginia. 

Lastly, no matter how prepared I am, I walk into the court room, sit down, and have a mild panic attack. My heart will race no matter how much I tell my self it went well last time, that they can't really do anything but put in a judgement, and that everyone was really nice the last time. And, all the judges and opposing rent-a-lawyers have all been very nice - nicer than I expected.  I just wanted to let you know you can be really nervous and still do this. 

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