Consumers beware! How To Find A Good Business Lawyer in Johannesburg south did you know that anybody who is interested in being a general contractor in Washington State and has the petty cash of $109.70 for a license and a bond fee of only $12,000.00, is able to work at this professional trade? A specialty contractor’s bond is only $6,000.00. No knowledge or testing required. Rip-offs are welcome.
This means Joe Blow, without any experience–or at best, minimal knowledge, may be hired to build your house. Then Mr. Blow will turn around and hire incompetent sub-contractor’s or specialty sub-contractors, breach the contract, file bankruptcy, be forgiven in court for the debts they owe at the homeowner’s expense and cause numerous liens on their property.
Then these wannabe contractors are able to recycle their crime and start another business under another name, over and over again. Estate Attorney Near Me guess what? It’s all legal in Washington State and they know this. This careless practice and fraudulent crime against homeowners and taxpayers are not tolerable in such states as California and Florida. This is another reason that there is so much construction going on in the State of Washington. It’s easy-pickings for contractor criminals.
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The property owner has the burden of proof. They are the victims. Fraud has a different meaning in Washington State. In bankruptcy court, fraud is very hard to prove. If proven against the contractor, the homeowner has a slight chance of seeking a judgment, but collecting that is another challenge. All these crooks have to explain is they went over their heads in expense. The fact is they underestimate the job, usually on purpose. In their trade, the terminology is called “low-balling.” They take draws of money from what the property owner has paid, then fund other projects and don’t pay their supplier’s bills they have in the victim’s name. This results with liens on the property owner.
The sub-contractor are protected under the responsibilities of the general contractor, whatever that is worth. Be acquainted with everybody who sets their foot on your property. Write down company names and vehicle license numbers. And if you file a lawsuit and hire an attorney, make double sure the lawyer is competent. Call your state Bar Association to check the status regarding disciplinary actions or complaints against the attorney you choose.
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There are reliable, capable and honest people who work as contractors and lawyers, Will Attorney Near Me but the crooked and incompetent ones have put them few and far between, and that truly is a shame.
My chalet-style house has been completed now for three years, but it stood in limbo for seven months in a tangled web of failed inspections and citations. I use to pride myself in the decisions I made in business and investments, but now I am so skeptical of the system and how it works against victims, like myself. My experience was a devastating blow to my confidence and trust.
Perhaps readers will join my cause for justice. The rules and laws are too slack and unjust. Just remember wherever you live, in whatever state, please protect yourself and your investment. Be cautious, alert and informative about your decisions when hiring a general contractor or specialty contractor. And it also goes for the attorney you hire. Pass this information and advice to your family and friends, “consumers beware of unscrupulous contractors and attorneys.”
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According to a report released by the National Bankruptcy Research Center, personal bankruptcy filings are up 34 percent in January 2009 as compared to January 2008. Compared to the previous month, December 2008, filings were up 4.5 percent.
These increases are no doubt a consequence of the current economic crisis. The National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER) reports that the United States' economy entered recession in December of 2007.
Traditionally, recession has been defined as two quarterly declines in gross domestic product, but the Business Cycle Dating Committee of the NBER has taken a more comprehensive approach to defining recession. "A recession is a significant decline in economic activity spread across the economy, lasting more than a few months, normally visible in production, employment, real income, and other indicators."
In 2006, predictably, bankruptcy filings crashed. Two effects were causing downward pressure on filings. First, filing demand had been cannibalized because many of those who would have, in the absence of the reform act, waited to file in 2006 were motivated to file in 2005 to avoid the restrictive new laws. Second, the restrictive new laws simply made many who previously were eligible to file ineligible.
What the credit card lobby took away through the Bankruptcy Reform Act, the tanking economy has given back. Many more United States citizens are now eligible to file bankruptcy, though no doubt, they're not happy about it.
The Functions of a Lawyer
When consumers get in over their heads financially, they may become the victims of harassing phone calls from overzealous debt collection agencies. These agencies often practice other unscrupulous tactics that are illegal. The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) was passed in 1978 to protect consumers from abusive and harassing behavior by debt collectors. The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) enforces the FDCPA, but has been lax in its enforcement duties. Fortunately, where the FTC refuses to act, there are provisions within the FDCPA that permits private enforcement.
What Practices Are Prohibited by the FDCPA?
The FDCPA prohibits debt collectors from using unfair collection practices to collect consumer debts from consumers. This federal law states that collection agencies are not allowed to:
• Call consumers before 8 a.m. or after 9 p.m. local time
• Call after a consumer has requested that they cease all contact with you
• Lie to consumers about the actual balance owed on their account
• Use threatening or obscene language, including racial slurs and taunts
• Threaten consumers with being arrested and locked up in jail
Consumer Rights Attorneys Can Enforce the FDCPA
Consumers that have fallen behind in their payments don't need to be subjected to collection threats, harassment, or abuse. Consumers have a right to be treated fairly during the often unpleasant experience of debt collection. But, debt collectors who violate the FDCPA can be penalized up to $1,000 in a consumer lawsuit. This penalty is known as "statutory damages" and would ordinarily belong to the consumer. Statutory damages are supposed to act as a deterrent against unlawful debt collection. There are other remedies provided by the FDCPA such as the payment of attorney's fees and costs. These are designed to permit consumers to attract competent attorneys to take their case without the fear of large fees and costs.
If you have been the victim of harassing phone calls or letters, please contact us today so that we can help by putting an end to it. We are very experienced in the field of fair debt collection practices, and we regularly file a FDCPA lawsuits against debt collectors alleged to violate fair debt collection laws.