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Roman Michael Whittaker
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Roman Whittaker’s Answers

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  • Unlawful detainer how does landlord recovery property damage

    The tenant has moved in 17 macaws and there is now about $25k worth of damage to the house. How can a landlord recover these funds

    Roman’s Answer

    After possession of the premises is recovered by the landlord through an unlawful detainer action, the landlord can sue the tenant for damage to the premises in a separate action (usually in small claims).

    DISCLAIMER: Please note that this answer does not create an attorney-client relationship, does not constitute legal advice and should not be relied upon, since each jurisdiction has different laws, each situation is fact specific, and it is impossible to evaluate a legal issue without a comprehensive consultation and review of all the facts and documents at issue.

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  • What do I do after I filed request for entry of default against a contractor who put a lien on my property and did not answer?

    I filed suit on a contractor who put a mechanics lien on my property. He failed to answer and I filed request for entry of default. What do I do to get the lein off and get my costs and expenses back?

    Roman’s Answer

    The answers provided are all correct. There are strict timelines within which a contractor must file a complaint to foreclose a mechanic's lien. If the deadline is passed, you can petition the court to release the lien and recover some costs and attorney fees. If you filed your own complaint against the contractor, I suspect it was for breach of contract or negligence or some violation of the contractor's license law. A petition to release the mechanic's lien will have to be brought separately if you didn't seek that relief in your complaint. I'm a lawyer in Palm Desert and can assist you should you desire.

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  • What can my HOA legally do to keep me from parking in my driveway?

    My HOA says I can't park in my driveway if I can fit the car in the garage. I have a large truck and an MKX.

    Roman’s Answer

    The first step is to carefully review the CC&Rs and any accompanying rules and regulations governing your community to determine the exact scope of the restriction and any possible exceptions. If you are truly out of compliance, the CC&Rs likely allow the HOA to impose fines against you and to put a lien against your home. If you continue to violate the CC&Rs and fail to pay the fines, the HOA may foreclose upon the lien. California law affords homeowners certain alternative dispute resolution rights and procedures to contest such action, but if the CC&Rs are clear and you are clearly in violation of its provisions, you are going to have a problem.

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  • In CA can a sub contractor without a license put a mechanics lien on a property and did not sign a contract with the owner?

    The contractor signed papers with an owner to fix her house up. The contractor hired someone to help him. I was told is a subcontractor but with no license. Come to find out the contractor doesn't have a license either. The contractor didn't f...

    Roman’s Answer

    • Selected as best answer

    A subcontractor who has not contracted directly with the property owner must serve the owner with a preliminary notice within 20 days of commencing work on the property as a condition precedent to recording a mechanic's lien against the property and no contractor is entitled to record a mechanic's lien unless they were licensed at all times they performed any work. There are also strict timelines for the recording of a mechanic's lien and the filing of suit to foreclose a mechanic's lien that can effect the validity of a lien.

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  • How can I protect my dads property left behind in the home I co-own with my ex boyfriend after he gave dad notice to vacate?

    My boyfriend and I own a manufactured home as tenants in common, both of us are on grant deed and house is paid in full. My ex filed unlawful detainer against my father because he had not paid rent, but then was going to accept payment from my dad...

    Roman’s Answer

    No lockout can be done until an unlawful detainer judgment for possession is entered by the court. If there is no judgment yet, the notice you are referring to is likely a pre-complaint notice, meaning that the landlord hasn't yet even filed an unlawful detainer complaint. If an unlawful detainer judgment has been entered and the sheriff's notice to vacate is final, the notice to vacate must be served at least 5 days before the sheriff may perform a lockout. That notice must also include a notice to remove personal property informing the tenant that such property may be retrieved within 15 days from the lockout if the tenant pays the landlord a reasonable fee for storage of the personal property during such time. See Code of Civil Procedure Section 715.010(b)(3).

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  • My HOA is trying to garnish my wages and bank accounts, what recourse do I have?

    The HOA put a jusdgment against me because they cannot attach it to my property, they will never get enough for it to make thenm whole. so they are coming after me personally. I am a single mother wil a limited income and can not afford them to t...

    Roman’s Answer

    • Selected as best answer

    You only have a few options at this point: You could try and set aside the judgment and defend on the merits, but I'm not sure you will have much of a defense to assert, as you are responsible for your HOA dues. You can defend against each collection procedure (wage garnishment, bank levy, etc.) by filing a claim of exemption, but you are likely going to end up having to make some regular monthly payment that the the court determines reasonable. Alternatively, you could talk to a bankruptcy attorney and seek bankruptcy protection.

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  • During 10 years of marriage with severe abuse cruelty and distress my divorce is final this year but despite a declaration

    from my husband given to me where he admits to all his cruelty and severe harm he did to me my family law attorney has done nothing about it . What can I do please help, I still suffer from all the harm he did. As an example I can tell that he tr...

    Roman’s Answer

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    Call the police and demand that a police report be prepared. You can also request that the Court issue a restraining order under these circumstances. Any hard evidence that you are able to gather and present will certainly help. Finally, if you are dissatisfied with your lawyer, you should get a new one.

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  • Employer working for The Aerospace Corporation has a contract from The Aerospace Corporation

    stating that he is not permitted to own any business.. What should I do. Is it a federal defense case, since he mostly work with highly classified material. As his wife I started the business 10 years ago and during separation he he took fully c...

    Roman’s Answer

    This sounds more like a partnership or family law issue than a labor/employment question. If you plan on getting a divorce, you need to get a good local family lawyer to protect your rights in the business. If you don't plan on getting a divorce but want to wrestle back control of the business from your husband, you need to get a good business lawyer. I can give you a referral to some good family lawyers in the Coachella Valley and can certainly assist on the business side of things if you are dissatisfied with your current counsel. I would need to know more about your business and how it is structured before I could give a better response.

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  • Notice of Opposition of Mediator

    I am involved in a civil case that has been ordered to mediation. I was told, in writing, by the courts that I had two options: a.) select a mediator and time provided by the plantiff or b.) have one randomly assigned. I chose to have one r...

    Roman’s Answer

    • Selected as best answer

    I'm assuming your case is venued in Indio. I have seen judges in Indio order cases to mediation, though mediation is usually ordered per stipulation of the parties. If the court was involved in appointment of the mediator, you are probably part of the Riverside County Bar Association's or Desert Bar Association's Mediation Program, which is provided at no cost to the litigants (limited to a maximum number of hours). If you have cause for objecting to the appointed mediator (bias), you should get the issue in front of the judge and ask him/her to appoint another mediator. This is usually accomplished by the filing of a motion. Judges take orders to mediate very seriously, so you should take prompt action to have another mediator appointed or otherwise be prepared to participate in the mediation. Finally, don't rely exclusively on the adverse litigant to schedule and coordinate the mediation. If the mediation is not scheduled and attended by the litigants, the judge will be upset with both parties for failing to complete the mediation as ordered by the court.

    Disclaimer: Please note that this answer does not create an attorney-client relationship, does not constitute legal advice and should not be relied upon, since each jurisdiction has different laws, each situation is fact specific, and it is impossible to evaluate a legal issue without a comprehensive consultation and review of all the facts and documents at issue.

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  • Can i break my lease due to cockroach infestation?

    i and my newborn baby moved into an apartment infested with cockroaches. i am fataly allergic to these bugs-had a chest x-ray proving that they were causing asthma attacks. a doctors note stating this was the problem for my asthma attacks. i was ...

    Roman’s Answer

    After putting the landlord on notice of the problem and allowing a reasonable time to have the problem fixed by the landlord, the tenant generally has a right to have the problem fixed themselves and may deduct the cost of the fix from rent if the landlord fails to take action. However, such "repair and deduct" rights may be affected by provisions within the lease. You should talk to a lawyer.

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