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J.Hazelbaker
J.Hazelbaker, Lawyer
Category: Consumer Protection Law
Satisfied Customers: 4385
Experience:  Extensive experience with contract, debtor/creditor, and consumer law.
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I am in Arizona. I have several judgments against me right

Resolved Question:

I am in Arizona. I have several judgments against me right now. I plan on filing for a BK but I currently can not because of the business I am involved in right now. I just got a Subpoena For Production, Inspection & Copying of Documents sent to me via mail. It was not certified. It is primarily asking for the last three payments made to my mortgage company and the account numbers and routing numbers of the accounts that I made payments. I have made those payments through my business account. I am now worried that my companies bank accounts could be frozen. I am a corporation, and I am the sole owner. The debt is personal, and my company is not named on the case. I am wondering what are my options at this point. It will be at least six months before I file my BK. What can I do to stop this. Do they have to personally serve me or send a certified letter?
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Consumer Protection Law
Expert:  J.Hazelbaker replied 2 years ago.

J.Hazelbaker :

Hello. Thank you for using JustAnswer.

J.Hazelbaker :

Based on your description, my guess is that they want the requested information in order to "pierce the corporate veil". They want to show the court that you have used corporate assets for personal use and should not, therefore, be able to shield company assets from your personal creditors.

J.Hazelbaker :

You can stall this for a while, but not six months (unless they drop the ball).

J.Hazelbaker :

One option is to delay until the last possible day, then ask for an extension. Eventually, they will move to compel and you will have to respond.

Customer:

I don't know if they know where I am paying my bills from, since at this point all I have is this letter requesting information.

J.Hazelbaker :

The only way, at that point, to stall them, is to declare personal bankruptcy.

Customer:

I have not been served by server or certified mail yet.

J.Hazelbaker :

If you are a party to the suit, they don't have to serve you the interrogatories or production of documents. The can simply mail them.

Customer:

what happens if I don't reply. As if I never received them.

J.Hazelbaker :

The risk is that once you provide those account numbers, you could find the accounts frozen within a week..

J.Hazelbaker :

If you don't reply, they might contact you again or they

J.Hazelbaker :

might simply file a motion to compel.

J.Hazelbaker :

Hypothetically, if you were to respond that you never received them

J.Hazelbaker :

and they couldn't prove that you did, then they would have to resend and the clock would start over.

J.Hazelbaker :

about the accounts...

J.Hazelbaker :

If it were me, I would open new accounts at a different bank and move my company money there.

J.Hazelbaker :

I would then properly respond to the request and give the old account information.

Customer:

Do they request bank records from bank, like transactions and such

J.Hazelbaker :

At this point, no.

J.Hazelbaker :

Since there is already a judgment, they won't do that.

J.Hazelbaker :

They will try to get that info from you.

Customer:

So, they just want to know where the money is coming from.

J.Hazelbaker :

If it turns out that there are no money in the accounts you provide, they will ultimately send a new request seeking new account information. That is, unless they give up.

J.Hazelbaker :

Keep in mind that approximately 85% of judgments in the U.S. never get fully collected.

Customer:

Why can they not just pull my social and find all of my accounts?

J.Hazelbaker :

The harder you make it for them, the more you string them out, the more likely they will give up.

J.Hazelbaker :

There's no database like that (at least legal).

Customer:

I buy and sell cars, can they sieze my cars that are in my company name?

Customer:

they don't know I do that though.

J.Hazelbaker :

No. Not until they "pierce the corporate veil" as discussed above. But that would take a new court hearing.

J.Hazelbaker :

If they gathered enough information to show that you mingled company and personal money, they might be able to pierce the veil and go after company assets. But, they would have to take you back to court to do that.

Customer:

What If i give them an account where I once paid the mortgage with. Not the business.

Customer:

not the business account checking account number.

J.Hazelbaker :

When you respond to the documents and sign them, you are doing so under penalty of perjury. Thus, you have to provide information that is accurate with regard to the question that was asked or the record that was requested.

J.Hazelbaker :

You can simply give information that is unrelated to the question. You don't want to deal with a contempt of court/perjury charge.

J.Hazelbaker :

Particularly when there are other options.

J.Hazelbaker :

Such as giving them the information after moving the money to a new bank and new account.

Customer:

Okay, so just give them the info they want. Then just wait.

J.Hazelbaker :

Again, I would personally give them the answer, but after moving the money.

Customer:

yeah, I stoped using that account after I got the first letter.

J.Hazelbaker :

O.K.

Customer:

In the letter it says I have thirty days to respond. If I don't, do they send me to a hearing

J.Hazelbaker :

If you don't respond in the 30 days, they will probably send you a reminder giving you a week or two. If you don't respond, then they will probably seek a court hearing.

J.Hazelbaker :

So,

J.Hazelbaker :

I would wait until the 28th day and call and ask for an extension of time (say two weeks)

J.Hazelbaker :

I might even ask for a second two week extension of time after the first two weeks

Customer:

what reason do I as for the extension

J.Hazelbaker :

at that point, I would wait until the very last minute and then provide the information.

Customer:

do I even give them one.

J.Hazelbaker :

Just tell them you are gathering the information and will have it to them in two weeks. Sorry for the delay, but you're busy and doing your best.

Customer:

once they have this information, what do they do with it.

J.Hazelbaker :

Two things:

J.Hazelbaker :

1) ask the court for a writ/order to freeze the bank accounts.

J.Hazelbaker :

2) start an effort to pierce the corporate veil and go after company assets.

Customer:

so, they are primarally asking for the bank account that I pay my bills with correct? Do I need to give them all of my bank accounts info.

Customer:

the differnt places my money is

J.Hazelbaker :

You only have to provide responses to the specific requests that were made.

J.Hazelbaker :

If they asked for the last three mortgage payments, give them the last three mortgage payments. No more, no less.

Customer:

they also want some docments signed that enables them to access my mortage history

Customer:

thanks for your time. is there anyway to talk to you more later. My email isXXX@XXXXXX.XXX

J.Hazelbaker :

I would probably object to that request. I would tell them that the request was not reasonable.

J.Hazelbaker :

Please let me know what follow-up questions you have. If my above responses have been helpful, please click Accept so that I get credit for the time/effort. You may always restart the thread and ask follow-up questions at any time by clicking the “Reply” button at the bottom of the question/answer thread. You can access this thread later in your profile under the “My Questions” tab.

Customer:

thanks,

J.Hazelbaker, Lawyer
Satisfied Customers: 4385
Experience: Extensive experience with contract, debtor/creditor, and consumer law.
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J.Hazelbaker
J.Hazelbaker
Consumer Protection Lawyer
4385 Satisfied Customers
Extensive experience with contract, debtor/creditor, and consumer law.