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Frank Wei-Hong Chen

Frank Chen’s Answers

23,765 total


  • They don't want to keep my security deposit and let me add the remaining amount while i'm going back to another country

    Hi, I have a problem with the place I'm living now and I want to know if it's normal. actually, I terminated my lease earlier so I had to pay a month and the termination fee . all the rent due have been paid and now the thing is the termination fe...

    Frank’s Answer

    It is not normal. Since the landlord must comply with Civil Code section 1950.5, the landlord does not have to apply the deposit to pay the early termination fee. Nevertheless, it would be the easiest method to ensure that the landlord gets paid the early termination fee. No, none of these civil matters (even if litigated) will affect your ability to return to the U.S. in the future.

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  • I rent a room from this landlord who constantly harassing me, insult me and called me names. Do I have any legal recourse?

    she acted like a super sweet harmless old woman when I looked at the place to rent 3 months ago. she appeared like a harmless "victim" again when she tried to rent this room to another unsuspecting guy. I just hope the poor guy wasn't fooled. I...

    Frank’s Answer

    You can sue in small claims court for failure to return your security deposit if you do not receive your security deposit back within 21 days after you moved out. Under California Civil Code section 1950.5, within 21 calendar days after a tenant moves out, the landlord must either send a full refund of the security deposit, or mail or personally deliver to the tenant an itemized statement that lists the amounts of any deductions from the security deposit and the reasons for the deductions, together with a refund of any amounts not deducted.

    Pursuant to Civil Code section 1950.5, the landlord may only use the tenant's security deposit for four purposes:

    1) For unpaid rent;

    2) For cleaning the rental unit when the tenant moves out (but only to make the unit as clean as it was when the tenant first moved in);

    3) For repair of damages, other than normal wear and tear, caused by the tenant or the tenant's guests; and

    4) If the lease or rental agreement allows it, for the cost of restoring or replacing furniture, furnishings, or other items of personal property other than because of normal wear and tear.

    Your claim for other damages for harassment, however, would be very difficult to prove or to quantify as monetary damages.

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  • What kind of attorney would fight for my rights after an eviction?

    Evicted Apr 1, 2015. Posted on the front door, the new landlord had 15 days to keep our personal property and animals safe. On April 6th our neighbors called us and said that our belongings were out in the front yard and the 3 indoor cats were a...

    Frank’s Answer

    If you could afford a lawyer, you need to look for a tenant's lawyer. Otherwise, each of you might be better off filing separate small claims court lawsuits. It is much faster, and you can each represent yourself without an attorney. Each small claims court lawsuit can award up to a maximum of $10,000.

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  • Will the court provide a refund of court fees if I have already paid, and will the accept Court Fee Waiver now ?

    Pro Per - Civil Unlimited Auto accident.

    Frank’s Answer

    Not likely. If you already paid the first appearance fee, it is unlikely the court will grant a fee waiver application AND provide a refund. However, if your financial situation has changed since the time you filed your complaint, you can file a Form FW-001 to waive other fees, and also a Request To Waive Additional Court Fees (Form FW-002).

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  • Records

    Had to substitute lawyer out and go in pro per. What is appropriate with regards to asking lawyer to a) handover my file /records and b) delete them from their record given they no longer represent me. With regards to second question are they unde...

    Frank’s Answer

    You are the client, and it is YOUR file. You are entitled to the original file, the entire file. If the attorney wants to make a copy, the attorney can do so at the attorney's own expense (unless your retainer agreement says that you agree to pay for the photocopying costs). See California Rules of Professional Conduct, Rule 3-700 Termination of Employment (D).

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  • Is it ok to share previous companys payslip with new employer without breach of confidentiality agreements?

    my new employer is asking for paystubs from last employer for visa purposes .... is it ok to share ?

    Frank’s Answer

    Most likely, it is okay. However, it is not possible to provide any opinion without having reviewed the actual confidentiality agreement in question.

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  • Can I sue my former employer for forcing me to terminate my employment?

    With no previous issues in my personnel file, my employer put me on a performance improvement plan and gave me 30 days to change o r lose my position. I was already under stress and was attending counseling sessions. I could not change what was be...

    Frank’s Answer

    A lawsuit against your former employer would not be a panacea, especially if you voluntarily stepped down. An employer can terminate an employee "at will", unless there is a written employment agreement. You might possibily have a claim for disability discrimination, but an attorney would need to analyze more facts regarding your stress and work performance.

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  • What would be the legal basis to request the judge to take pictures inside the court room ?

    Wish to take a picture of ex inside the courtroom for memories. Can I make a motion ?

    Frank’s Answer

    That would not likely be a valid basis. For more information on this topic, see California Rules of Court Rule 1.150.

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  • Can the landlord withhold my deposit for power washing the exterior of the house. it was Not messy.

    On the walk through for move out, he said to power wash the exterior, I did, looked great, he found a few webs and now said he is hiring some to do it and charging me. He also is stating other repairs, but the new tenants moved in the day after I ...

    Frank’s Answer

    It would be quite unusual for a landlord to require a tenant to powerwash the exterior of a residential dwelling unless for some reason, the tenant caused the problem beyong what would be considered normal wear and tear, and unless the lease or rental agreement expressly required this. It appears you might have to sue the landlord in small claims court for failure to return your deposit. For more information, see:
    http://www.dca.ca.gov/publications/landlordbook/sec-deposit.shtml

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  • Can a legit messenger service get in any kind of trouble by lying or committing perjury on their "Proof of Service"?

    After being served a "Three Day Quit of Pay" notice I waited and waited for the messenger to deliver the "Unlawful Detainer" to be served. After waiting 3 weeks, the local courthouse sends me a courtesy notice that the "Unlawful Detainer" had bee...

    Frank’s Answer

    Practically speaking, even though perjury is a crime, there would not likely be any penalty. If you were purportedly served, you will need to file a motion to quash service of summons. If a default and/or default judgment has already been entered, you will need to make a motion to set aside default and to vacate default judgment. No one can adequately advise you without reviewing the documents that you saw and/or received.

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