Skip to main content
Dave Bahr

Dave Bahr’s Answers

943 total


  • I have exhausted my FOIA appeals and now seek litigation. Are there qualified FOIA attorneys in New York City?

    Any responses can be sent to: joemiller743@gmail.com

    Dave’s Answer

    I am sure that there are many attorneys in the NYC area with the expertise necessary to litigate a FOIA case. However, many/most of these likely work for NGOs or firms representing a policy-based client base and probably are not available to take private clients. You will need to locate an attorney with both the experience required to successfully litigate a federal FOIA case and a willingness to represent a private client. You do not indicate if you are seeking pro bono representation, but usually attorneys representing private clients expect to be paid some amount for their time. However, the FOIA does have a provision allowing a court to award the costs of litigation, including attorney fees, when the requester wins the case.

    I would be happy to review your materials. You may contact me using the information below

    Regards,

    See question 
  • Can a city council override a refusal for a public records request?

    I made a public records request that was denied by the city attorney himself. I feel he was being a little biased because the request was related to some misbehavior by one of his deputy city attorneys. If I was to make a plea to the city council,...

    Dave’s Answer

    Each state has its own public records law. Some offer a route of administrative appeal of an initial denial, some do not. I believe that California provides for the option of such an appeal but does not mandate it. A local attorney could provide you with advice regarding the specific options available to you in Covina. If there is no right to an administrative appeal, then seeking judicial review (filing suit) would be the only available option. Again, a local attorney would need to review the reasons for the decision on your request and the potential for success.

    Good luck,

    Dave Bahr

    See question 
  • Is it legal to "not" let a person hear a recording of your conversation with them?

    A home warranty company has told me that I said something that I didn't say. I wanted to hear the recording because I know what I said. The warranty company is trying "not " to cover repairs on my washing machine because, according to them, I t...

    Dave’s Answer

    The right to hear a recorded conversation is distinct from the right of a person to make such a recording. Generally, such recordings are subject to discovery in litigation, but a person cannot demand access to them short of filing suit. However, state consumer protection laws vary from state to state, so you should check with local counsel to determine if you have a right of access to the recording without filing suit. Good luck.

    See question 
  • Malicious prosecution case, do you think this is enough evidence? Should I think of anything else?

    I have a guy who continued his 15 year vendetta with my father with me when my dad died. In the last 5 years he has sues and appealed over 20 times and lost them all. The lawsuits are so ridiculas the judges have freaked out and threw it out of c...

    Dave’s Answer

    • Selected as best answer

    I am not specifically familiar with the laws of New York. However, generally, someone behaving as you outline could be described as a "vexatious litigant" (or similar term) and some states have laws that allow a defendant to obtain summary dismissal if a complaint is filed by someone like him w/out prior permission from a judge. You'll need to see if NY has something along those lines. Even without such a statutory designation, it would probably be within the scope of a judge's authority — based on presentation of such a record via a sworn declaration from you — to require judicial permission prior to initiating further litigation. The fact that this person has money means that he may have assets exposed to attachment as part of a money judgment from which a lawyer could obtain a fee. Therefore, you might want to check with local counsel to see if you can find one willing to be your advocate to shut this guy down once and for all. I would check into that option before trying to low-ball a damage claim to shunt your case into small-claims court. Good luck.

    See question 
  • I hired an attorney out of state to appear for me. He gave me a PO Box number to send a payment. Is that normal?

    Should I send this payment?

    Dave’s Answer

    You can check with the state bar association to confirm that the lawyer is real and in good standing. It is not unusual for firms to use PO boxes to receive mail.

    See question 
  • Can you list claims for both conversion and an accounting in the same complaint?

    Money was stolen, but the amount cannot be determined without an accounting. Can claims for an accounting and conversion be in the same complaint?

    Dave’s Answer

    Multiple claims may be asserted in a complaint, even claims "in the alternative" that may be in conflict with each other. Generally, if a claim is not timely presented in a complaint, a party is barred from raising it at a later time.

    See question 
  • Looking for help with enviromental issue

    in front of our home in punta gorda the county removed a culvert sytem and replaced it with a sheet drain which makes the water flow over the road instaed of under it, we have complaine to the govenor,fdep,sfwm,charolette county gov.to no avail w...

    Dave’s Answer

    Your question poses a number of issues related to hydrologic flow and proof. What may seem obvious to a person with long-term experience in the area still needs to be subject to proof at trial. Unfortunately, even if you find a lawyer willing to take the case pro bono (check with your local bar association's lawyer referral service to inquire), an expert will be needed to establish the evidentiary basis and experts are ethically barred from working on contingency (as it might taint their testimony). If this affects a number of your neighbors, perhaps you can pool your resources to fund litigation. Good luck.

    See question 
  • How do I compel a city to abide fully by the Public Records Act when releasing information related to a business license?

    An unincorporated city in the Los Angeles County refuses to comply with California Government Code provisions regarding the California Public Records Act. I requested the business license records of a particular establishment registered with the c...

    Dave’s Answer

    The California Public Records Act, like all such laws, presumes that agency records are to be available for public review, subject to various narrowly construed exemptions from mandatory disclosure (for personal privacy reasons, confidential business information, etc.). I do not believe that the California law requires an option of an administrative appeal of an inadequate response, but an individual agency may provide that option by rule if it chooses. If not, filing suit to seek judicial review is the only option. Good luck.

    See question 
  • Do I still have to respond to discovery questions even if the plaintiff's attorney has requested to withdraw as counsel?

    Adversary Proceeding case. His lawyer stated that he hasn't had contact with his client for more than 4 months and is owed more than $1,200. No evidence has been presented or witnessess.

    Dave’s Answer

    As noted by my colleagues, a party must respond to properly served discovery requests, even if the other side's attorney has withdrawn. The discovery request is submitted on behalf of the other party, not the attorney, so an attorney's withdrawal has no relevance to the duty to respond.

    See question 
  • Lawyer fees for a criminal case in NYC - do's and dont's

    I'm considering hiring a lawyer and just want to understand how fees work - I know there are a few different concepts (retainer, fixed, etc). Can someone help break it down for me? I'm inquiring about a criminal case, just in case that makes a dif...

    Dave’s Answer

    You are correct, that there is no contingency based fee agreements for criminal defense work; there is no "pot of money" at the end of the case from which to extract a fee. Many criminal defense attorneys will set a flat fee, payable up front, for taking a case. Others will agree to work on an hourly basis, but will still insist on an up front payment of a large retainer payment to be deposited into a client trust account from which the funds are then withdrawn as earned. All of this may be open to negotiation, but the bottom line is that in almost all criminal defense work, the money needs to be paid before work is performed. Hope this helps.

    See question