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Frank Wei-Hong Chen

Frank Chen’s Answers

23,139 total


  • Indeed the corp and myself were named

    They are tying to pierce the corporate veil. I have an attorney (landlord tenant) it's just that there has been so much bad blood and small claims between us previously. I am just reading so much about the "veil" that nothing seems absolute anymor...

    Frank’s Answer

    Indeed, nothing is absolute when it comes to litigation. A corporation does provide liability protection. However, the alter ego doctrine can be used to "pierce the corporate veil" to obtain personal liability against individuals who own and control a corporation. In order to raise an alter ego allegation, a plaintiff must provide sufficient facts to show that:

    (1) the corporation is not only influenced and governed by a person, but also that there is such a unity of interest and ownership that the individuality, or separateness, of such person and the corporation has ceased and
    (2) an adherence to the fiction of the separate existence of the corporation would, under the particular circumstances, sanction a fraud or promote injustice.

    (Associated Vendors, Inc. v. Oakland Meat Co. (1962) 210 Cal.App.2d 825, 837.)

    Factors which have been described in the case law in California include inadequate capitalization, disregard of corporate formalities, lack of segregation of corporate records, and identical directors and officers. No one characteristic governs, but the courts must look at all the circumstances to determine whether the doctrine should be applied.

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  • How can I get attorney fees per written contract for the cost of defending a motion to set aside a judgment?

    I obtained a judgment which included costs and attorney fees. The defendant made a motion to set aside the judgment which was denied. How do I get attorney fees for defending the motion to set aside the judgment

    Frank’s Answer

    The typical procedure for obtaining attorney's fees in a judgment is to file a motion for attorney's fees (concurrently with the memorandum of costs) within the same time permitted to file an appeal of the judgment. If there was no attorney's fee motion made, then the judgment does not include attorney's fees and the judgment creditor would not be entitled to recover attorney's fees for post judgment collection efforts either.

    However, note that if you represented yourself in pro per as the plaintiff, you would not be entitled to collect attorney's fees if you obtained a judgment.

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  • I am involved in a case before LA Superior Court. We have an upcoming hearing on June 23, 2015. I filed a motion.

    My question relates to an order the court signed. There are two attorneys of record. The Court ordered me to serve one attorney by email. I just received a Substitution of Counsel and am confused. The attorney of record is substituted for another ...

    Frank’s Answer

    A Substition of Attorney-Civil form can be filed in lieu of a Motion to Be Relieved As Counsel of Record. To comply with the court's order that you serve notice of ruling, you should serve all counsel (past and prior) via both email (if you have it) and by mail. Likewise, your Reply to Opposition to the Motion should be served on all counsel, past and prior. Make sure you use personal delivery, overnight mail or fax to comply with Code of Civil Procedure section 1005.

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  • How can I recover my property from my ex boyfriend?

    When my ex boyfriend moved to Georgia, I was under the impression we were going to get married and that I will joining with him again. He took all the furniture that I paid for. He broke up with me within a week of arriving at Georgia and I woul...

    Frank’s Answer

    You will have to bring a lawsuit in Georgia to recover either the value of the personal property or the property itself. Not all courts will order the return of tangible things, but a court can always award a judgment for money damages.

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  • My ex boyfriend and I had a lease together but he never paid rent. Is there a way to recoup the money?

    My ex boyfriend and I singed a lease together in January 2014 and it ended in February 2015. Our rent was $1595 and we were to split it in half. He has only paid his half 3 times. I have the documents to when he has transferred money to my acco...

    Frank’s Answer

    If you had an oral agreement to split the rent and you ex refuses to pay, you may have no choice but to sue in small claims court. The bank account statements will be good evidence to support your claim.

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  • What types of 2nd mortgage fraud been recorded on property

    my landlord passed away I have the deed to home after his death new document or being recorded and 2 and mortgages been recorded

    Frank’s Answer

    There are a number of liens, encumbrances and junior deeds of trust which could be recorded against the property. If and when you record the grant deed, it is quite possible your title will be challenged by the landlord's heirs. Also, keep in mind that even if you take title, your ownership is subject to any existing encumbrances and deeds of trust (which become your responsibility).

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  • Question in regards to LLC in the state of California

    In 2008, through the advice of a friend, I created a LLC. After a few years, I decided to dissolve the LLC because i never used it in any ways. Recently, the state sent a statement saying we owe the state 4k. ($800 per year for 5 years for usin...

    Frank’s Answer

    There is no need to dispute this if you have not paid it yet. Whether the LLC had any assets is not relevant. The obligation to pay the $800 per year is the obligation of the LLC, not the personal obligation of its individual members. If you formally dissolve the LLC, you will need to pay the back taxes. However, you can just let the LLC get suspended by the FTB.

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  • What is a trial Brief?What is its purpose and format?What is the 1 most important thing to remember when I write this brief?

    Please don't tell me something I already know like"you need to get an attorney" unless you are willing to represent me. See...,that's what everyone says and so that is how it has been for 36mo. ProPer with 27mo. of it in litigation against a fede...

    Frank’s Answer

    The main purpose of a trial brief is to introduce the nature of the case, to describe the causes of action alleged, and to provide legal authorities which are pertinent to the claims and defenses. For example, in a wrongful foreclosure lawsuit, you might need to discuss the case law regarding "cure" and you should definitely discuss the specific citations to the California Civil Code addressing foreclosure (2924 et seq). The introduction section of the trial brief will be akin to your opening statement at trial (and in some instances replaces the opening statement in a court trial). Keep it simple and make it brief. The brief is written on pleading paper format with a caption page. There usually is no specific requirement regarding what must be included.

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  • In a fraud case, such as forgery of signatures on recorded Grant Deeds- how are reasonable attorney fees and costs recovered?

    there were several transfers of a real property before it was sold. the forged signatures were also notarized. actual money damages is hard to calculate- forged documents is under criminal but can you recover them in civil if the city/courts won't...

    Frank’s Answer

    In a civil lawsuit, if you are the prevailing party, you will be able to recover certain (but not all) costs which are enumerated and described under Code of Civil Procedure section 1033.5. You will not be able to recover attorney's fees, even if you are determined to be the prevailing party.

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  • Can I sue an individual under Unruh Civil Rights Act?

    Can I sue an individual under the Unruh Civil Rights Act or can I only sue the business establishment?

    Frank’s Answer

    Yes, as with the federal Americans With Disabilities Act, you can sue any person who owns, leases (or leases to) or operates a place of public accommodation under California's Unruh Civil Rights Act.

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