Skip to main content
No photo

Mark Storm’s Answers

13 total


  • Can a landlord charge me 350.00 for a small bedroom carpet thats over 5years

    can landlord charge me 350.00 for 5year old carpet in small bedroom 10x13

    Mark’s Answer

    I can't speak for your state but it typically depends on how much the carpet was worth, how long it normally lasts, and how much depreciation has occurred by normal wear & tear. If a new carpet was $350 and normally lasts 5 years then your carpet lasted as long as it was supposed to under normal wear & tear. The landlord can't normally charge for normal wear & tear. If the carpet normally lasts 10 years but you used it up in only 6 years due to excessive wear & tear, then you have 4 years of carpet value left that a landlord can charge for.

    This response does not create an attorney-client relationship.

    See question 
  • I received in the mail from an attorney that they filed with the Superior Court an Entry of Default but was not served.

    I went to the court house and wanted to file my response but they said my time had expired. I told them I was never served and requested a copy of Proof of Service. It stated that they served Jane Doe and also that a copy of Summons was mailed w...

    Mark’s Answer

    A defendant can ask for an agreement (stipulation and order) from the plaintiff to set aside the default, allowing you to answer. If they won't agree to it, then the defendant can file a motion to quash service of the summons as improper. A defendant can also file a motion to set aside the default. The defendant must (1) be within the proper time frame; (2) file and serve a proper written motion; and (3) argue proper legal grounds to have the court grant the motion.

    This post is general information, not legal advice, and does not create an attorney-client relationship.

    See question 
  • I got a summons for small claims court, being sued for bad checks that are not mine. How do i respond to this.

    Can i call them and tell them they have the wrong person or do i still need to go to court and prove i am not this person that wrote the bad checks. i have never written a bad check and all my accounts are in good standing.

    Mark’s Answer

    There's nothing really secret about a drivers license. It's your SSN you should really protect the most.

    See question 
  • Collection Agency reported to CRA without sending Debt Validation.

    1. I lived in this apartment till Nov 26th 2009. 2.Utility gas account remained on my name for long after I moved out. 3, In March, received a bill stating that I have an over-due of 146.98 for the month of January & February 2010.(Apparently ...

    Mark’s Answer

    Under federal FDCPA, the right to debt validation is triggered by a communication from the debt collector to you. The debt collector must send you a notice of your FDCPA validation rights within 5 days of the initial communication. You then have 30 days to dispute the debt and demand validation. You should do so by certified mail, return receipt requested. Unfortunately, you do not provide enough facts to answer the question.

    Thus post is not legal advice nor does it create an attorney-client relationship.

    See question 
  • Refund for uninhabitable rental cottage

    I had rented a vacation rental property (in upstate New York) and paid the full rent in advance. On arriving at the property, I found the cottage was not in good condition to stay - both exterior and interior. The walk way was covered with plants ...

    Mark’s Answer

    I assume you are a tenant. In most states, a landlord must provide a habitable property to a tenant. Failure to do so justifies rent withholding and a tenant's moving out. Check your state law.

    See question 
  • I had a month to month lease. The contract didn't specify when I would have to give notice to move out. Is 2 weeks okay?

    Hello, I had a month to month lease at a residence. The contract we wrote didn't specify a term or how far in advance I would have to give notice to move out. I gave them two weeks notice and at that point, they said that they needed at least a...

    Mark’s Answer

    If your state requires you to give 30 days notice on a month-to-month, then you would likely owe the full rent for the whole month, not just 2 weeks.

    See question 
  • Can I sue for wrongfully ruining my credit score?

    I was contacted by a collections agency regarding a medical bill from a doctor I went to 4 months ago claiming it was not paid. I was never notified by the doctor that we owed anything. Come to find out after researching my check register I did pa...

    Mark’s Answer

    You might look at theories under the state and federal fair debt collections practices act, the fair credit reporting act, defamation of credit, unfair business practices, negligence, etc. You may want to dispute it all thoroughly in writing to everybody under the sun (e.g., original creditor, debt collector, credit reporting agencies, etc.) by certified mail return receipt requested, laying out your argument.

    There are experts who calculate damages based upon credit damage.

    This post does not create an attorney-client relationship or constitute legal advice. You should contact your personal attorney.

    See question 
  • Can I be served papers in California regarding a debt collection by just being left at my door?

    I got divorced several years ago and a credit card in my name was awarded to be paid off to my ex-husband. This year the credit card co. started calling me regarding this balance after he filed bankruptcy. I have emailed them my divorce papers and...

    Mark’s Answer

    The divorce papers are binding between you and your ex, but they are not binding as to the creditor or debt collector. They can still collect from anyone who is a valid debtor on the account.

    As far as service of papers, they normally must serve personally, not just leaving papers at the door, unless somehow the court allowed them to serve like that in advance. You might try to fight the service as invalid. However, if you win that battle, all they need to do is serve you again. So, it's often easier to just answer or negotiate rather than fight service of process.

    This post is not intended as legal advice. It does not create an attorney-client relationship. You should consult your personal attorney.

    See question 
  • I got a summons for small claims court, being sued for bad checks that are not mine. How do i respond to this.

    Can i call them and tell them they have the wrong person or do i still need to go to court and prove i am not this person that wrote the bad checks. i have never written a bad check and all my accounts are in good standing.

    Mark’s Answer

    You might send them a letter and follow up with a phone call. See if they are willing to voluntarily dismiss without you having to answer. Don't let the time expire to answer, though.

    See question 
  • Can a landlord come and change the locks on a house without a court order?

    We are in the prosess of being eviected Our landlord left a note on our door saying that she will be changing the locks on wednesday. This is our very first notice of anything!!

    Mark’s Answer

    I can't speak to your state, but using California as an example, a landlord normally can't change locks unless the landlord does a proper legal eviction. If a proper legal eviction has not been done, then the landlord can change the locks but must give the tenant a copy of the new key. Otherwise, it's basically an illegal lockout.

    Check with an attorney in your state.

    See question