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Mark Westerfield

Mark Westerfield’s Answers

446 total


  • Is it legal for a McDonald's Manager to refuse me customer service, even though the policy she stated, doesnt exist?

    On my way home from work, I stopped by McDonald's Drive-Thru to place an order. When I told the girl I had 5 meals to order, she said there was a 2 meal minimum order. I mentioned I had never heard of such a thing and that I had always ordered mor...

    Mark’s Answer

    Is this legal? Yes. Companies can set their own policies so long as they do not discriminate or violate a law. There is no basis for a claim here, based on the information provided. While you may disagree with this policy, the person in line behind you probably is not.

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  • What happens if you visit your old high school and are stopped by a school resource officer or safety assistant?

    If you are visiting your old high school to see a friend,teacher, or simply visit for old time sake what are the consequences if you do not have a visitors pass sticker on your chest? Will the school resource officer or safety assistant give you ...

    Mark’s Answer

    You have no right to be on a school's grounds without permission. In Fairfax, there are very clear signs that provide notice of this policy. If you are there for a legitimate purpose, you can easily get a visitor pass. If you are there after school hours, the policy is rarely enforced bc there are a lot of parents and non students inside the school and on school grounds. "Resource Officers" are Fairfax County police officers. No one can say what a RO will do in a specific case with a particular person. You would be very foolish to test this policy.

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  • Speeding ticket. Can I get it dismissed by going to driving school instead?

    Its been a little over a year since my last ticket, which was a failure to follow road signs I believe (crossed solid white lines). To be exact, it was on black friday of 2011, so about a year and 5 months ago. During that time I was required to a...

    Mark’s Answer

    You need to go to the DMV and ask them to provide you with your traffic record. That will provide a starting point.

    In most cases, the insurance consequences of a ticket are not related to the DMV points. The insurance company rates you based on the number and types of infractions, so going to traffic school again may not help.

    DMV points are assessed separately from the court process. In most cases, when a person is convicted, that is reported to the DMV which assesses points, depending on the specific infraction. (Not all infractions result in points. Not all infractions end up on your DMV record. It depends, which is why I advise you to get your record.) Traffic school does not clear your record. It simply adds points back to your total. My understanding is that you can only get + points from traffic school once every two years. The Virginia DMV has a good website that explains all this. Look under "Demerit Points"

    As for the most recent ticket, no, you cannot get a speeding ticket dismissed by going to driving school instead. It is possible that you can arrange a deal of some sort at court, but it depends on the specific case and the county where the ticket was issued. If the speeding was more than 20 miles over the limit or was over 80 mph, then you may have been charged with reckless driving and not speeding and you should contact a lawyer ASAP.

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  • How can i receive a summons to go to court and be threatened with a garnishment if i am paying the agreed upon amount on time?

    have been paying on an old rent bill for almost 3 years at 25 dollars a month. not late but two times and currently paying it. now, the sheriff delivers a court date for august and they're talking garnishment. how can they garnish when i'm paying ...

    Mark’s Answer

    • Selected as best answer

    If you received a summons from the Sheriff, you (with or without a lawyer) must appear in court to contest the garnishment or it will almost automatically be granted.

    If you have a written agreement -- which I hope is the case -- then you must bring that with you and any correspondence or emails to/from the former landlord. If you worked out a payment plan as part of a mediation agreement with the Landlord when the judgment was obtained against you, then the payment plan should be in the court file if you do not have a copy. Go to the court, BEFORE your court date and review what is in the file and see if the agreement is there.

    Whether you have a written agreement or not, you need to provide proof of each payment. You need a copy of the checks or money orders. That may take some time to get bank records that are several years old, so check NOW with your bank. You also have the right to send a letter to the other side's lawyer and ask for proof of any credits or offsets to the judgment. You also can serve a subpoena on the former landlord to obtain a copy of any written payment agreement, any correspondence, and any accounting records related to your judgment if not attached to the Garnishment summons. Good luck to you.

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  • How can I know that I won't have other physical issues after treatment with neck /shoulders after being rear ended?

    I am in physical therapy for stiff neck and shoulders.I do not have an attorney. I went to see one they were estimating about 6000.00 for settlement if there is nothing else found after therapy, so the lawyer I'd consulted made suggestions so ...

    Mark’s Answer

    • Selected as best answer

    The specific answer to your question is that you cannot predict the future as far as your medical condition and you will only have one opportunity for a settlement (or trial if you took the case to trial). If you settle and then have problems later, you would have no recourse against the other person involved in the accident or the insurance company.

    I urge you to retain a lawyer to help you with this. He or she can review the case and answer these questions for you. A lawyer will take a percentage of any settlement, but in my experience a person usually ends up with more money in his pocket if he has a lawyer represent him. The insurance company is NOT doing you any favors in this. Their job is to pay you as little money as possible to close the case. They are NOT looking out for your interests and the adjusters who work with people who are not represented are trained to "be your friend" in the process to try to prevent you from seeking the advice of a lawyer.

    Many lawyers say they work on accident cases. Find someone who has worked on hundreds of cases and done many trials and put your trust in that lawyer.

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  • Home repair contractor is suing for nonpay/breach of contract. Can i counter for breach ofcontract, misrepresentation, damages?

    In 2011 I hired a contractor, whom stated he was licensed to perform ALL of the work needed for my bathroom remodel for $3000. I provided all materials. The contractor did a horrible job, didnt pull permits for electrical, plumbing work & the b...

    Mark’s Answer

    • Selected as best answer

    The specific answer to your question is "Yes" you can file a counterclaim, but that assumes you have specific damages. In this case, it sounds as though you had a deal with him when you signed the estimate and then never paid him anything for his labor. The contractor you hired to correct the mess could be your best witness. You may also have a valid claim under the Virginia Consumer Protection Act, which may provide a way for you to collect damages, as well as attorney fees and expenses of litigation.

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  • Do I have a fighting chance? Last bill statement was 06/12 court date 03/26/13. Should I proceed to trial Or settle with lawyer?

    I am being sued for CC debt and plaintiff have sent me I think all copies of my bill statements including the latest 06/07/12 for the amount of $2,137.64. Should I fight OR stand down and contact the plaintiff lawyer to settle?

    Mark’s Answer

    Credit card debt is hard to beat unless you did not use the card to make the charges -- such as a stolen card -- or unauthorized use of the card. If you used the card to make purchases and signed for the purchase, then you have few options if the case was filed within the statute of limitations. You may be able to work out a payment plan with the lawyer or with the credit card company.

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  • I am being sued for $2,137.64 court date 3/26/13 and last bill statement was sent to me 06/12 what should I plead? Pls. Help

    Plaintiff lawyer was able to sent me copies of all bill statements with the warrant in debt summons

    Mark’s Answer

    The very first court date is used to schedule a date for trial and for interim dates, unless you admit that you owe the amount claimed. If you deny that you owe the debt, you will need to be able to state to the judge a SHORT explanation for why you do not owe the amount. For example: "I already paid them." "This is not my account." "Someone stole my credit card."

    If you owe the debt, a judgment will be entered. If you disagree that you owe the amount claimed or you disagree about the amount, the judge will set a trial date (in about 3 months) and then probably will require the Plaintiff to file a Bill of Particulars and for you to file a Grounds of Defense where you state in some detail why you do not owe the amount.

    Beyone this lesson, you may want to pay a lawyer for an hour consultation so that he or she can review the facts with you and give you some more specific advice.

    Good luck to you.

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  • On NJ STATE LOTTERY winnings- I paid taxes in NJ and in Va- on my 2009 tax return taxes- when I did my return I used turbotax

    Which downloads everything into my state return .On my W2G it says state income tax withheld why does The state of Va say I own taxes because I wasn't entitled to take a withholding tax paid to NJ and deduct it from the taxes I owe in Va. They sa...

    Mark’s Answer

    Unless you the amount was small, you should have consulted with a CPA or a tax attorney in 2009 and you probably should do so now. There are too many variables here for someone to provide you with an answer online. This is complex and most lawyers would probably go to a CPA or tax attorney to help them with this. My guess is that most CPAs would refer you to a tax attorney. In selecting a CPA or tax attorney, I would also suggest that you find someone who has specific experience with lottery winnings and how Virginia and NJ handle this.

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  • I own an insurance policy on my ex-husband's life. I pay the premiums and I am the beneficiary. May I sell this policy?

    Our divorce was finalized in 2007. He would like me to just turn this policy over to him. He states that it would be illegal for him to pay me anything for this. He would not be able to qualify for this policy at this time, so it would benefit ...

    Mark’s Answer

    I would find the insurance papers and review them or have a lawyer review them for you. You can also call the insurance agent or company and ask about your right to sell the policy. Your rights will be dictated by the terms of the policy. Before you sell the policy to anyone, I would first look to see if there are other possible buyers. I have heard of companies that will buy these type of policies based on actuarial values. Depending on circumstances, you may also want to simply keep the policy for yourself.

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