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Frank Wei-Hong Chen

Frank Chen’s Answers

23,586 total


  • What can I do if my bank account is levied?

    My bank account just got levied, and every dime of what little money I had in my account was taken. I'm going through some hardships an am unemployed at the moment and they just took everything I had. Got a notice from my bank that I still owe abo...

    Frank’s Answer

    I assume there was a judgment rendered against you for the debt you owe. If so, the judgment creditor can levy your bank accounts and garnish your wages (if you were employed). If you are a debtor in California who has difficulty satisfying a judgment after being served with a Writ of Execution, you can file a Claim of Exemption along with a Financial Statement. A Claim of Exemption is a form a debtor files with the levying officer (like the sheriff) explaining why bank accounts should not be levied and/or the wages that the creditor wants the debtor’s employer to garnish should be exempt (excluded). The forms for wage garnishments are:

    http://www.courts.ca.gov/documents/wg006.pdf

    http://www.courts.ca.gov/documents/wg007.pdf

    Turn in 2 copies of the Claim of Exemption (Form WG-006) and the Financial Statement (Form WG-007) to the levying officer in your case (like the sheriff) within 10 days of receiving the Notice of Levy. Keep one copy of both forms for yourself.

    Your employer will hold on to the money garnished until 10 days go by and the creditor hasn’t opposed the claim of exemption, or the judge makes a decision at the hearing on the claim of exemption. If the creditor doesn’t oppose your claim of exemption, your employer will return the wages to you. If the creditor opposes your claim of exemption, you will receive a Notice of Opposition to Claim of Exemption and Notice of Hearing on Claim of Exemption that will set a court date for a judge to make a decision. If the judge agrees with your claim of exemption, you will get the money back. If the judge agrees with the creditor, your employer will send the money to the creditor every month.

    Similarly, for Claim of Exemption for non-wage garnishments, use Form EJ-160 instead of WG-006:

    http://www.courts.ca.gov/documents/ej160.pdf

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  • Under California law can an HOA prevent me from opening a home daycare?

    We are planing on purchasing a condo in San Diego, CA my wife has a home daycare and we are wondering if we will have any issues with the HOA if we buy a condo.

    Frank’s Answer

    She should be able to do so, but check the HOA's CC&Rs for specific details. Generally speaking, California Health & Safety Code section 1597.40(c) voids restrictions which limit the acquisition, use, or occupancy of property for a family day care home for children. Although HOAs cannot prohibit day care centers, HOAs may nevertheless adopt reasonable regulations such as requiring proper licensing, adequate liability insurance, and supervision. See CA Health & Safety Code sections 1597.30-1597.621.

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  • Are extra fees considered "rent" in a rent controlled building?

    I live in a rent controlled unit where I pay a pet fee and a parking fee, both of which are in the original lease. Each time the rent has been raised, the pet fees and parking fees have both doubled. What the management considers "rent" (money pai...

    Frank’s Answer

    These extra fees should be considered as part of "rent". Therefore, there may be an issue of the landlord collecting excessive rent. You can file a complaint with LAHD at:

    http://cris.lacity.org/rentweb/rentcomplaintintake.aspx

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  • Is my landlord required by any civil code statute to maintain dilapidated lighting in the common areas ?

    We live in an apartment and our landlord refuses to repair the lighting in the common area. I am concerned for or safety because we live in a main downtown street and are prone to burglaries. Is this a legal requirement ?

    Frank’s Answer

    There isn't a specific Civil Code section regarding this issue of common area lighting. However, Civil Code sections 1941 and 1941.1 are often used by tenants to argue health & safety and habitability issues.

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  • Is it worth to flight all the way from China to US just to sue me for 4200$? Because i have been return him 800$ so far.

    Hello i have an issue relate to loan. I met him in college and i am an international student and he is one semester exchange student. I borrow him 5000$ but so far i return him back 800$ so there are 4200$ we did a hand written paper but i do not ...

    Frank’s Answer

    Only he will know whether or not it is :"worth" it. However, if he has no visa, he won't be able to return to the United States to file a small claims court lawsuit. He could hire an attorney to sue in the superior court, but most lawyers won't take on such a small case (especially if the plaintiff won't be able to be present in court to testify as the key witness). No, the court does not suggest solutions, nor recommend you resolve the case out of court. The court only determines who wins and who loses.

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  • Landlord has a writ of possession...do the Sheriff's just come and throw you out, or do you get 5 days from them showing up ?

    in Los Angeles County

    Frank’s Answer

    The tenant gets 5 days after the sheriff serves/posts the notice to vacate.

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  • Does a landlord need to have an apartment complex pool maintained professionally?

    For water safety issues or otherwise, does the landlord have a responsibility to have the swimming pool cleaned and maintained by a licensed pro? At present, there is a tenant maintaining the water and so far this season, the pool has been closed ...

    Frank’s Answer

    No, there is no such requirement for private swimming pools in California.

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  • How much notice do I need to give my tenant on moving out?

    I want to sell the property. The tenant has lived there 4 years. I want it empty to sell it easier. It is located in Palm Desert, Ca.

    Frank’s Answer

    I assume the tenant is a month to month tenant, and not on a fixed term lease. You won't be able to terminate a fixed term lease early. In California, a landlord can end a periodic tenancy (month-to-month) by giving the tenant proper advance written notice. The landlord must give sixty (60) days written notice that the tenancy will end if every tenant has lived in the rental unit for a year or more. (Civil Code section 1946.1(b).) However, the landlord must give the tenant thirty (30) days written notice in either of the following situations:

    -- Any tenant or resident has lived in the rental unit less than one year (Civil Code section 1946; Civil Code section 1946.1(c)), or

    -- The landlord has contracted to sell the rental unit to another person who intends to occupy it for at least a year after the tenancy ends.

    In addition, all four of the following must be true in order for the selling landlord to give the tenant a 30-day notice:

    (a) The landlord must have opened escrow with a licensed escrow agent or real estate broker, and

    (b) The landlord must have given the tenant the 30-day notice no later than 120 days after opening the escrow, and

    (c) The landlord must not previously have given you a 30-day or 60-day notice, and

    (d) The rental unit must be one that can be sold separately from any other dwelling unit.

    (CA Civil Code section 1946.1(d).)

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  • Burden Shifted to Defendant in Civil Matters; possession of evidence

    So isn't the burden shifted to Defendant in civil matters when they are in possession of all the evidence that could prove or disprove of a case. Why or why not??

    Frank’s Answer

    The plaintiff always has the burden of proof for any claims which the plaintiff is pursuing. The burden does not shift to the defendant merely because the defendant possesses the evidence which the plaintiff deems necessary to prove plaintiff's case. Unfortunately, if this is a small claims court case, the plaintiff does not have the right to conduct discovery to force the defendant to produce documents. However, the plaintiff can subpoena documents necessary at the time of trial.

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  • Refinancing an investment property and lender asking requires title to be out of LLC to qualify for loan

    Investment property (3 units) held in its own LLC. I would like to do a cash out refi and lender says I need property to be in my name to qualify. Any way around this other than moving it out and then back in LLC?

    Frank’s Answer

    You will need to find another lender who is willing and able to lend to the LLC (perhaps with you individually as a guarantor).

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