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Robert Harlan Stempler

Robert Stempler’s Answers

4,057 total


  • My Car was repossessed, I spoke with bank and they told me amount to pay, but won't release car

    My car fell behind on payments and was repossessed Friday at 1:30am. I spoke to Ally Financial Friday morning (about 11am), and they told me all I had to do was pay $1306 (this excludes any late fees or applicable charges) and they would release m...

    Robert’s Answer

    I have a legal guide on consumer rights following vehicle repossession, linked below. Your posting does not specify if this was a lease or a purchase, which have different rights following a repossession. Given the facts that you specified, tonight or tomorrow contact a consumer attorney with experience in vehicle repossessions, as a small claims case will not help you if the value of the vehicle exceeds $10,000, the small claims court jurisdictional limit. If the finance company has violated your rights under the applicable laws, then the court could award you damages and attorney's fees, so why try to do this alone? Be aware that time is limited, in that delays can result in much greater harm, such as if they sell the vehicle and you did not pursue your rights timely. The contract should specify the late fees and the finance company is required by law to send you a notice of how much remains due on the contract, including repossession fees.

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  • How is it possible for a judgment creditor to place lien on m home after the debt was discharged in CH 7 BK?

    After the plaintiff got a judgment in superior court we filed for BK and although we did not list this creditor we never paid him anything. The debts we owed were discharged and the lawsuit sues the trust and the trustee who I was not then but am ...

    Robert’s Answer

    I would consult your bankruptcy attorney or hire another bankruptcy attorney to see about reopening the bankruptcy to have the lien removed. When you say the lawsuit sues the trust and trustee, I am not sure whom you mean. The bankruptcy trustee or are you referring to the trustee of a family living trust?

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  • When is an attorney fired, when the client tells them so or when the substitution of attorney form is filed?”

    California, civil case, no objection from court

    Robert’s Answer

    Fired when the attorney received notice that the client is terminating the relationship. The filing of a substitution of attorney completes the termination and permits the court and opposing counsel to contact the new counsel or self-represented party.

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  • Filed personal injury suit. Settled with defendant. Now, trying to fill out CA form Civ-110 for dismissal Couple of questions:

    1. I am filling out Civ-110 to dismiss the case with prejudice. I think I sign on #2 to say there were no court fees waived. Do I also sign on #3 where it says: TO THE CLERK: consent to dismiss...? 2. Also, is there anything else that needs fil...

    Robert’s Answer

    The Plaintiff or his/her/its counsel signs only box #2 and complete the other information on box #2 and all information above that. If the court required you to pay the filing fee and the defendants to pay a first appearance fee, then check the box for no fee waiver. Do not complete anything below the dark line under box #2, that is for the clerk of the court to complete. You should mail a photocopy to all counsel of record with a proof of service by US Mail, and file the original and present an extra copy, so you can get a conformed copy for your records.

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  • How does one regain possession of a car that one's ex is driving, and refuses to give it back?

    My friend lives with her boyfriend; they are in the process of separating. Last year they bought a car together. He put down $4000, from the sale of his truck. My friend paid the balance- maybe $14,000. Both their names are on the title. He has be...

    Robert’s Answer

    He will need to get her name removed from the vehicle, which may require a court order, which would require some form of action to quiet title filed in Superior Court. if she wants the vehicle, she will need to file an action in Superior Court for possession and to remove his name, which will likely require a showing that she has the exclusive right to the vehicle, such as by proof of paying most or all of the price. If she cannot do that, then I doubt that her case will result in such an order. If neither party has the exclusive right to the vehicle, a court could order one party to pay the other side to buy out that person's interest. The insurance issue is not an issue, as anyone who drives the vehicle is covered, if they have insurance, but it is best if they have the vehicle specified with their insurance policy if they drive it regularly, to ensure that the insurance company will pay for any collision damage, above the deductible. You may need to consult an attorney about this, I am not aware of a standardized court form, though it is something that family law attorneys handle regularly as to spouses and quasi-community property relations.

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  • Unsigned Document: I am a pro per, and I forgot to sign a document before I filed it with the civil court. The

    clerk filed it anyway, but now I'm wondering if I should amend the document, so I can sign it and file it again. Or should I just sign it and send the signed copy to the other side?

    Robert’s Answer

    I am not sure why the clerk did not catch that, but perhaps the fact that you were filing it and it was from you and shows your name on it, may be sufficient to show that you are deemed to have signed it. If you look at documents filed with the courts, many times hand signatures are missing, because the attorney or party is deemed to have signed the document. Thus, I don't know that it is something you need to fix, but then again, you don't want to have the other side file a motion to strike for lack of a signature. Consult an attorney, there may be other problems with your pleadings, this may be only a minor issue.

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  • Is it possible to file a continuance for an LA court credit card collections suit?

    One week til trial date.

    Robert’s Answer

    You'll need to have a reason for a continuance at this late date, or the court will reject it. It will need to comply with the requirements for an Ex Parte Application and you will need to notify the other side. Perhaps the other side will stipulate and you can file that, instead, which the court is likely to grant.

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  • How long does a debt collector have to re-file a debt collections case that was dismissed without prejudice?

    I had, not a debt collections company but the actual credit card company sue me and the case was dismissed without prejudice. I understand the case can be refilled. My question is, is there a SOL on the refilling OR// AND does the SOL of 4 years t...

    Robert’s Answer

    Yes, the statute of limitations should be used as a defense. In fact, multiple statute of limitations should always be alleged in an answer to complaint, as you don't know what you may find and you may learn a shorter statute of limitations can apply to certain causes of action. In Cal. Superior Court, the Civil Procedure permits defendants to allege numerous affirmative defenses that may or may not apply, as the facts and evidence develop towards trial. Hire a debt collection DEFENSE attorney if they refile, to ensure this is done properly and you don't miss issues that come with experience in these cases.

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  • Can a person overlook a breech of contract during performance of the contract and rely on it when its time for me to get paid?

    I am being denied money owed to me on the premise that I breeched contract. The specific term of the contract was that I was to advertise supply and facilitate sales of products. This contract ran over 4 months. I unfortunately didn't give enough ...

    Robert’s Answer

    • Selected as best answer

    A material term that one party breaches could give the other party the opportunity to refuse performance, on the basis of that material term being breached. Your posting indicates that the term was part of the contract, but you did not pay enough attention to it, because you were not told it was your job. Consult an attorney who handles contracts to determine what arguments can be developed to help you enforce your right to payment or help you move on, if it is likely you will not be able to enforce this contract. Do this soon, as there are time limits and people also don't realize that even if the statute of limitations is not about to expire, a court can interpret lack of action or silence as a waiver of certain rights.

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  • If a court requires an undertaking for a lis pendens, how much do they cost? Is the cost a percentage of the total undertaking?

    How does the court decide the total amount of the undertaking? It certainly would not make sense for it to be the total value of the real property.

    Robert’s Answer

    It is up to the defendant/property owner to file a motion to require an undertaking or expunge a lis pendens. How much or what percentage depends on the order of the court, based on the facts presented. Research at your library or online Cal. Code of Civil Procedure Section 405.30 et seq. Consult an attorney.

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