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Brian J Ladouceur

Brian Ladouceur’s Answers

138 total


  • Do I need to keep my personal injury lawyer?

    I was a passenger in an auto accident last month, I currently have a personal injury lawyer but I'm not sure if I need one. I had 5 weeks of and physical therapy and 6 weeks of chiropractic care, my medical bills are around $6,500 and I only misse...

    Brian’s Answer

    Because you’re already represented the insurance company should not have direct contact with you without your attorney, so you’d be well advised to have a honest discussion with your attorney about your case status, your injuries and how you want it to proceed.

    Generally, the value of an inured person’s case can be increased by effective legal counsel that knows the law and various theories of recovery, what injuries are normally worth, what insurance coverage are available for recovery, what medical and treatment costs maybe reimbursable liens, and finally what similar type cases have been awarded damages at trial, in mediation or pre-trial settlement.

    Keep in mind that while PI attorneys have varying levels of skill, experience and resources, in Connecticut their contingent fees they can charge on a claim or civil action to recover damages resulting from personal injury, are set by Conn. Gen. Stat. Sec. 52-251c to be 33 1/3 % of the first $300,000, 25% the next $300,000, and so forth.

    In addition, when a client transfers a contingent matter to successor counsel the 1st attorney is entitled to recover certain legal fees for his/her efforts from the final recovery. Therefore, you don’t “save” money after retaining counsel and then going it alone because those fees are expenses the injured person will need to pay whether they pursue their case on their own or with other counsel.

    If you've found my answer helpful and informative please below designate as a “Best Answer” or mark that you “Agree”.

    Disclaimer: The foregoing answer does not constitute legal advice, is provided for informational and educational purposes only for persons interested in the subject matter. Each situation is fact specific and may be subject to state specific laws. Without a comprehensive consultation and review of all the facts and documents at issue it is impossible to evaluate a legal problem fully. This answer does not create an attorney-client relationship.

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  • I have a revocable trust, how important is it to have my real estate, car registrations and titles in the name of my trust for

    my heirs to avoid probate?

    Brian’s Answer

    A Trust without any assets is of little benefit, however, its advisable to consult with an Estate Planning Attorney to guide you through a number of complex decisions to determine what tools (such as a Trust) that your Estate Plan should leverage to achieve your tax, financial or family objectives.

    A Trust is one tool in an Estate Plan and for simplicity can be thought of as a private agreement between the Trust and its Beneficiaries on how the Trust’s Assets (contributed by the Donor) are to be managed and distributed. A “Living Trust” (a/k/a “Inter Vivos Trust”) can take Title to assets (i.e. real estate, personal property, stock, etc) while the Donor is alive, and if it’s a Revocable Trust that generally means the Donor in his/her lifetime can change or terminate the Trust. Another common Trust that is most often created within a person’s Last Will & Testament, and referred to as a Testamentary Trust, essentially lies dormant during the person’s lifetime and becomes effective only after the person (Donor) dies (i.e. it doesn’t have title to assets during the Donor’s lifetime). One drawback of a Testamentary Trust is that the Estate still needs t be probated in order for the assets to “pour over” from the Testator (person who died) to the Trust set up within the Last Will & Testament (i.e. to care for minor children until they reach age 25, etc.)

    Some of the more common reasons people use Trusts is to reduce estate taxes, provide for minor children, provide for special needs child (and maintain his/her eligibility for means tested benefits), manage assets for a financially unsophisticated or incapable person, and transfer assets outside of probate and in private.

    Also be aware that some of the benefits of using a Trust to protect your assets have specific look back periods that the assets must have been transferred from the Donor’s name to the Trust’s name, so delay in transferring the assets can be harmful to an overall Estate Plan if not executed property.

    Good luck and a good Estate Attorney would be a worthwhile investment to make sure your plan is appropriate for your circumstances.

    If you've found my answer helpful and informative please below designate as a “Best Answer” or mark that you “Agree”.

    Disclaimer: The foregoing answer does not constitute legal advice, is provided for informational and educational purposes only for persons interested in the subject matter. Each situation is fact specific and may be subject to state specific laws. Without a comprehensive consultation and review of all the facts and documents at issue it is impossible to evaluate a legal problem fully. This answer does not create an attorney-client relationship

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  • What kind of lawyer do I need?

    I recently am starting a limo company and have applied for "L" livery plates in the state of Connecticut. I have processed all the paperwork and submitted payment to the DOT for the application fee. I have been waiting months for a response. I ...

    Brian’s Answer

    An experienced Business Attorney can be a worthwhile investment for any person starting a new business in Connecticut. They will not only quickly and effectively guide an entrepreneur through the State’s complex laws and regulations, but also will be a valuable resource to turn to as questions and issues arise as you run and grow your business.

    For example, based on the limited information provided in the question one explanation for the delay is that an incomplete or confusing application was sent to the Dept of Transportation (DOT). Obtaining a Livery Permit and getting Livery Plates are two different actions with two separate departments.

    A nice resource for further information is the Connecticut Licensing Information Center (CT CLIC) located at www.ct-clic.com. Below is a link to the Livery Permit info page.

    Good luck.

    If you contact me I’d be willing to evaluate if your request is something we can assist with or provide you a referral to another attorney that maybe able to assist.

    If you've found my answer helpful and informative please below designate as a “Best Answer” or mark that you “Agree”.

    Disclaimer: The foregoing answer does not constitute legal advice, is provided for informational and educational purposes only for persons interested in the subject matter. Each situation is fact specific and may be subject to state specific laws. Without a comprehensive consultation and review of all the facts and documents at issue it is impossible to evaluate a legal problem fully. This answer does not create an attorney-client relationship.

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  • I slipped and fell on gas in a gas station do i have a case

    i slipped and fell on gas at a gas station do i have a case

    Brian’s Answer

    You “may” have a case if your fall resulted in an injury or damages (something your questions does not mention). If you are hurt then its recommend you consult with an experienced personal injury lawyer (which most will provide free of charge) to determine whether or not you have a viable negligence claim against the business / property owner.

    In general, a business that invites the public to enter their premises to purchase goods and services owes those persons (known as a business invitee) a high degree of responsibility. That duty in most instances requires the property owner to keep the premises free of defects and safe for the public and if any defects are known to them to properly warn patrons / visitors and then repair such conditions as soon as possible.

    A Connecticut lawyer should be able to evaluate whether the gas station business (i.e. its manager / employees) had prior notice of the hazard (i.e. spilt gas) that may give rise to liability. Also in Connecticut (unlike some states) an injured person may also be entitled to recovery under the “mode of operation” rule, an exception to the traditional premises liability doctrine, in which certain hazards are to be anticipated due to their frequency and likelihood of occurring from the normal business operations. Did the gas station owner know of the spilt gas, how long had it been spilt, did the person who was injured spill the gas himself, had another patron told the station owner of the spill, how much gas was spilt, did other conditions make the spill more or less slippery, did the injured person report the fall or wait to report it, how soon after the fall did the injured person seek medical help, and is there any surveillance video of the injury location? These are just are some of the questions that an attorney may ask to determine the strength of the claim.

    You should consult a lawyer ASAP if you think your injuries are worth pursuing a claim for compensation.

    If you've found my answer helpful and informative please below designate as a “Best Answer” or mark that you “Agree”.

    Disclaimer: The foregoing answer does not constitute legal advice, is provided for informational and educational purposes only for persons interested in the subject matter. Each situation is fact specific and may be subject to state specific laws. Without a comprehensive consultation and review of all the facts and documents at issue it is impossible to evaluate a legal problem fully. This answer does not create an attorney-client relationship.

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  • Can I be sued for leaving my job?

    A foreign company has purchased the business where I have worked for 30+ years. The new owners seem to have problems paying vendors and we are unable to deliver our product. Obviously, customers are furious and those of us on the front lines are...

    Brian’s Answer

    • Selected as best answer

    Connecticut is an at-will state meaning that absent an agreement otherwise either the employer or employee may terminate their relationship at any time, with or without cause (i.e. for a good reason (absenteeism, insubordination, theft, etc.) or no reason at all).

    Anytime adverse employment action (i.e. terminate employment, change working conditions, etc.) is taken against an employee it’s advisable to consult with a local attorney about what specific rights or actions maybe taken. While foreign buyers typically retain local counsel to advise on Connecticut law, it is not unheard of for such foreign employers to not have local advise and end up taking unlawful action against its employees. In such case the employer is left exposed to valid claims by their current and former employees. Some of the more common claims include discrimination (i.e. age, national origin, race, etc.) and wage and hour claims (i.e. overtime, failure to pay accrued unused vacation, etc.)

    As far as former employees getting sued something more must be at play. Generally, the greatest risk for claims an at-will employee faces is if the employee takes (steals) or communicates proprietary confidential information owned by the employer. In cases where the employer can prove a departing employee downloaded (to a zip drive or other storage device) employer customer lists or other valuable competitive information (i.e. manuals, price lists, product specs, etc.) the former employer may bring a civil injunction action against the former employee (and often his/her new employer) to prevent such use and to seek money damages.

    Generally, employers are not able to restrict a former employee’s general knowledge, skills and experience. However, in situations where employees have a written non-compete agreement there are many fact determinative reasons why an employer could legitimately restrict a former employee from competing against it bring a suit against that former employee. A court will look at the reasonableness of the restrictive covenants in the non-compete as well as other factors to determine if it is enforceable.

    If you have concerns over your job security, working conditions or that you’ve been unlawfully targeted by the new owners you should seek legal advice. Good luck.

    If you've found my answer helpful and informative please below designate as a “Best Answer” or mark that you “Agree”.

    Disclaimer: The foregoing answer does not constitute legal advice, is provided for informational and educational purposes only for persons interested in the subject matter. Each situation is fact specific and may be subject to state specific laws. Without a comprehensive consultation and review of all the facts and documents at issue it is impossible to evaluate a legal problem fully. This answer does not create an attorney-client relationship.

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  • Overtime mileage, and work abusive

    i work for national assembler inc also known as east coast assemblers corp. been work for this company for since 6/14/2010 i have never gave any problem but the best of me. this company first pay me piece work no over time i have to drive over 100...

    Brian’s Answer

    This question has a lot going on for which specific facts and documents will determine what rights / defenses are available to you. As most (if not all) of those possible claims have specific statutory deadlines in order to protect your rights and your ability to file such claims, you should contact a lawyer immediately. A Labor / Employment lawyer should be able to advise you on your specific case and deadlines.

    For example 1) failure to pay overtime and other compensation (cost reimbursement) are potential wage and hour claims, 2) failure to respond to a work place injury (in terms of medical treatment and/or absence from work) are potential claims that could be pursued at the workers compensation commission, 3) if adverse action was taken that impacted employment (i.e. fire from job, reduce hours, etc) in retaliation for pursing workers comp related injury those are also claims that could be pursued, and 4) there maybe evidence and other defenses to reject an employer’s claim that refusal to work as grounds to deny unemployment compensation. In addition to the above there probably are many other possible claims and defenses that a further attorney consultation would uncover. You should consult a lawyer about your situation.

    If you've found my answer helpful and informative please below designate as a “Best Answer” or mark that you “Agree”.

    Disclaimer: The foregoing answer does not constitute legal advice, is provided for informational and educational purposes only for persons interested in the subject matter. Each situation is fact specific and may be subject to state specific laws. Without a comprehensive consultation and review of all the facts and documents at issue it is impossible to evaluate a legal problem fully. This answer does not create an attorney-client relationship

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  • Should i pay my civil demand?

    I am 17, i got caught stealing something under 10$ at Kmart yesterday, cops were not called they said i was going to get a letter stating a civil demand. should i ignore it or pay for it

    Brian’s Answer

    Hopefully you’ve told your parents / guardian about the incident because as stated below they may also be included in the civil demand when it arrives by mail. Whether to pay or not pay is a decision for you both to make because while some people ignore such civil demands and nothing further happens because the merchant never pursues it further (or doesn’t hire a lawyer to collect), a number of merchants find attorney’s to aggressively collect these debts via the small claims court in Connecticut. Therefore, generally speaking I tell Connecticut people that ignoring the issue will make it worst, however, if the dollar demand is low its not uncommon for people to pay it (or try to negotiate a lower amount) and put the issue behind them.

    For your information, in Connecticut a merchant has a statutory right to pursue theft in civil court (as opposed to criminally) and seek damages (see, Conn. Gen. St. Sec. 52-564a). If a merchant pursues civil action using Conn. Gen. St. Sec. 52-564a, it's entitled to the retail value of the merchandise taken (if not recovered or recovered in an unmerchantable condition) plus the actual and reasonable costs of maintaining the action, including court costs and a reasonable attorney's fee, plus punitive damages in an amount not to exceed three hundred dollars.

    Also if the person is a minor child then (per Conn. Gen. St. Sec. 52-572) a merchant has a statutory right to pursue the parent(s) or guardian of any unemancipated minor(s) who “willfully or maliciously cause damage to any property” on a joint and several basis for the amount of damage up to $500.

    As the police were not called then it sounds like criminal charges are unlikely so you’ll only need to deal with the civil end of the crime. Good luck.

    If you've found my answer helpful and informative please below designate as a “Best Answer” or mark that you “Agree”.

    Disclaimer: The foregoing answer does not constitute legal advice, is provided for informational and educational purposes only for persons interested in the subject matter. Each situation is fact specific and may be subject to state specific laws. Without a comprehensive consultation and review of all the facts and documents at issue it is impossible to evaluate a legal problem fully. This answer does not create an attorney-client relationship

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  • Are contracts that I entered into via an LLC still valid?

    I entered into a licensing contract via my LLC 3 years ago in order to utilize Company A's intellectual property in a comic book. The length of the contract is 10 years. It works on royalties - if it makes anything, fine, if not, that's fine too. ...

    Brian’s Answer

    • Selected as best answer

    Generally speaking an agreement entered into by a limited liability company will be effective for the term of the contract. When an LLC dissolves (usually voluntarily by its members) then the company during its winding up process will collect its assets and pay its liabilities prior to making distributions to its members. Even after an LLC is dissolved it may sue and be sued as part of that winding up process.

    If the licenses agreement permits assignment to another party then an individual and/or another entity (i.e. corporation, LLC, etc.) once assigned can assert those rights (and be obligated for any responsibilities). Careful consideration needs to be made to determine if any liabilities exist as part of the agreement because once assigned generally those liabilities will pass to the new person / entity, something that one may want to keep tied up with the old LLC.

    In Connecticut a dissolved LLC may file an application with the Connecticut Secretary of State for reinstatement (per Conn. Gen. Stat. §34-216). (see http://www.sots.ct.gov/sots/lib/sots/commercialrecording/allforms/cert_of_reinstatement_-_llcs.pdf ) Reinstatement is commonly done when an LLC needs to continue business for a specific purposes related to asserting some important rights, transferring some forgotten property, or retaining some liabilities that if not reinstated would pass to an individual (which they want to avoid).

    Consult with an attorney if sufficient enough money / rights are involved.

    If you've found my answer helpful and informative please below designate as a “Best Answer” or mark that you “Agree”.

    Disclaimer: The foregoing answer does not constitute legal advice, is provided for informational and educational purposes only for persons interested in the subject matter. Each situation is fact specific and may be subject to state specific laws. Without a comprehensive consultation and review of all the facts and documents at issue it is impossible to evaluate a legal problem fully. This answer does not create an attorney-client relationship.

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  • Lawsuit Breach of Contract, Can anyone tell me what I'can do about this? I realize I need legal help, but what speciality, etc?

    I cosigned a private student loan application for $30000 at 10% with another cosigner for a student, but then the company said they could only do $14000 at 19%; I said No Way (talk about bait and switch) PS I had good credit, so did other cosigner...

    Brian’s Answer

    • Selected as best answer

    In addition to the advice above (contacting a Debtor's Rights attorney who can also advise whether the student and cosigner can discharge their obligations) make sure you provide your counsel with all of the application paperwork (signed application, your signed guarantee, any loan details / loan solicitation papers / emails).

    Generally, my experience in such maters is that the application contains language which in a court of law can obligate the signer for the debt incurred from the lender extending credit (and possibly future extensions of credit). Those “application” also have language that obligates the signer for 100% of the debt (something called joint & several liability) whereby the lender can (and does) bypass the other obligors and goes directly after the person with the most money.

    Based on your statement the loan terms appear to have changed and you refused the new terms (hopefully in writing that you saved) so your counsel may also look to see if the loan creditor’s claims violate any banking regulations and/or may constitute unfair trade practices. If so then those would be strong defenses that may help dispose of the claims to your advantage.

    If you need a referral to a Connecticut Debtor’s Rights attorney let me know.

    If you've found my answer helpful and informative please below designate as a “Best Answer” or mark that you “Agree”.

    Disclaimer: The foregoing answer does not constitute legal advice, is provided for informational and educational purposes only for persons interested in the subject matter. Each situation is fact specific and may be subject to state specific laws. Without a comprehensive consultation and review of all the facts and documents at issue it is impossible to evaluate a legal problem fully. This answer does not create an attorney-client relationship.

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  • I am writting a book and want to use a real store and resteraunt name in my book. do i need permission from the store owner?

    i am writting a book and the story takes place in Bozeman Montana. My character will shop in a local store and eat at a local restaraunt.I would like to use the names of 2 real businesses.

    Brian’s Answer

    Generally speaking a writer is able to without permission include the names of actual places (even trademarked names) in their literary works. Risk of including such references is lowest when the place names are minor elements to the story (i.e. a few mentions, not central to the story line) and are neutral and/or positive in nature (i.e. a popular local hangout with great food). Where an author can run into the risk of defending legal claims (usually upon receiving a cease and desist letter once a work is published) is if the place / trademark is associated with some negative connotation and/or harmful image (i.e. the site of a food posing epidemic, dirty dingy place filled with ex-cons, etc.).

    If you've found my answer helpful and informative please below designate as a “Best Answer” or mark that you “Agree”.

    Disclaimer: The foregoing answer does not constitute legal advice, is provided for informational and educational purposes only for persons interested in the subject matter. Each situation is fact specific and may be subject to state specific laws. Without a comprehensive consultation and review of all the facts and documents at issue it is impossible to evaluate a legal problem fully. This answer does not create an attorney-client relationship.

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