1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.

I Brought the Feathers...Who's Got the Tar?

Discussion in 'Issues Around the World' started by Coot, Dec 6, 2002.

  1. Coot

    Coot Passed Away January 7, 2010

    I've been following, on and off, a story of the most vile nature involving...what else? Lawyers.

    It seems that here in California, there's a Depression era law on the books that allows anyone to sue on behalf of the public. A group of enterprising young lawyers set up shop, established a front corporation, Consumer Enforcement Watch, and began filing mass produced lawsuits naming a few hundred small businesses at a crack. They're suing nail salons, small restaurants and automotive repair shops.

    They get the names of the companies they want to sue off the internet. For example, the Bureau of Automotive Repair in California keeps a list of all car repair shops in the state that have ever been cited for anything available on their website. The vast majority of shops being sued have violations along the lines of incompletely filled out estimates, forgetting to write down odometer readings, placing hazardous disposal fees in the wrong box and other minor paperwork errors. The Trevor Law Group just downloads the list of names and violations, cranks up the copy machine and files a few hundred suits on behalf of their front corporation....nevermind that the corporation has no phone number, no address and only a P.O. Box.

    They then send out a followup letter and occasionally a phone call admonishing the company for their bad behavior and strongly encouraging them to settle for $2000. The caveat is that the company agree to give Consumer Enforcement Watch access to all their books and records for four years...so that they can look for anything new and file suit again.

    The local

    ABC affiliate ran an investigative piece on this and found some rather interesting information:
    They absolutely do not bring suit against companies that are incorporated with multiple store outlets as these types of businesses have the financial resources and the will to contest these suits and not settle.

    More info here, here and here.
  2. yazdzik

    yazdzik Veteran Member

    Their activity is censurable. One may not lawfully prosecute a frivolous cause of action, nor interpose a fictitious defence.
    I am sorry, on occasions like this, that, as much as I admire the eighth amendment, there is no clause therein excepting members of the bar.
  3. Coot

    Coot Passed Away January 7, 2010

    Well, it looks like things are looking up....albeit only a bit. Dan Walters, political columnest out of Sacramento is beginning to pound the drum. It's going to be a huge battle to end this legalized extortion as the Consumer Attorneys of California, the guys doing the extorting, are also huge campaign contributors.

    The AG, Dan Lockyer, is heavily financed by these guys and he is loathe to act, saying he would prefer a more 'balanced' approach.
  4. Robert Harris

    Robert Harris Passed Away Aug. 19, 2006

    Balanced meaning he will consider doing something when he gets an equal amount of money from the other side?
  5. Stiofan

    Stiofan Master Po

    I heard the guy talk on a local radio show about two-three weeks ago. He was completely non-apologetic about his business practices. He basically said what he is doing is legal, and besides, he's protecting the public. I think he's got either a death wish, or he's too stupid to realize pretty soon he'll PO the wrong small businessman. More stories <a href="http://sacbee.com/content/politics/story/5525070p-6504165c.html">here</a> and <a href="http://www.dailybreeze.com/content/bln/nmblaw3.html">here</a>.
  6. Coot

    Coot Passed Away January 7, 2010

    Well, there's a bit more good news, an Orange County judge is about to toss out 2000 filings of the same suit against auto shops in that county. It seems a defendant got a demurrer before the judge stating that all 2000 suits be heard as one. The judge concurred stating that since all 2000 suits were filed using one filing they can be heard as one. Trevor asked for time to prepare a response as he believed his lawgroup was being conspired against by the defendants.

    The judge said no and gave him 30 days to dismiss the suits or he would do it for him. Sounds like they're afraid of all these defendants coming after them for costs :)
  7. limeygit

    limeygit Assume Sarcasm...

    Do small business owners in Southern California not own baseball bats, are there not dark nights, and for that matter alleys?
    Just wondering...

Share This Page