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When an ex-employer threatens to sue you for loss of money

Resolved Question:

When an ex-employer threatens to sue you for loss of money (not embezzilment) unless you pay them 25k to keep it out of court...is this concidered extortion?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Criminal Law
Expert:  LawTalk replied 1 year ago.
Good morning,

I'm Doug, and I'm very sorry to hear of your situation.

Anytime someone makes a demand for money and says that if you don't pay that money that they will sue you in court for the money that is never considered extortion, but rather a civil demand.

Extortion requires that someone demand something of value to which they are lot legally entitled with the threat that if the thing is not given, the they will report you to law enforcement authorities and allege that you have committed a crime---a criminal act for which you can be criminally prosecuted.

The initially letter that you received demanding $25,000 was simply posturing by the other side---asking for more than they though they could ultimately get. But none of the demands amounts to the violation of any law. Also, the fact that they have dropped their demand by 80% would indicate that they believe you have a pretty strong defense to their original claim. I wish you success.

You may reply back to me using the Continue the Conversation or Reply to Expert link if you have additional questions; and if you do, I ask that you please keep in mind that I do not know what you may already know or with what you need help, unless you tell me.


Please remember to press the smiley faces/stars on the right of your screen when we are finished with our communication so I will be credited for my time in assisting you.
Kindly remember to ONLY rate my answer when you are fully satisfied. If you feel the need to rate anything less than OK, please stop and contact me with whatever issue or clarification you may need. I will be happy to continue further and assist you until I am able to address your concerns to your satisfaction.

I wish you the best in 2013,

Doug
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Here is a copy of the email from their laywer. They are asking for something valuable to me....my wages. Does thjs help?


 


After speaking with them, they would take $15,000 up front. The rest would be paid as follows: $100 per pay period, not per month, and each tax return you receive until the balance of $27,500 is paid. That should take a little over 2 years maximum. They are willing to give you two weeks to get the $15,000 to my office. There is no further negotiation or compromise of this. Payment of the $15,000 is expected by July 20, 2012, and $100 per pay period will start the first pay period in August

Expert:  LawTalk replied 1 year ago.
Good morning,

Thanks for the additional information Stephanie.

It is much more than them just asking you for something of value. That is only one part of a multi-part analysis that must go into determining whether extortion has occurred.

I've read the communication and what I find is that they claim that they have a legitimate reason for asking you for money. But aside from that, they are not threatening to file criminal charges against you with the police if you don't give them money.

In order for them to be guilty of extortion, they would have to 1. Have no right to make a claim for money, or some other item of value, against you----and 2. Then threaten to report you to police for a crime if you didn't give them something of value.

For example, if you saw someone steal a car---not your car---just a car. If you went to them and said look, I saw you steal that car. if you don't give me $500 I'm going to tell the police you stole the car. That, would be extortion. It is extortion because you threatened to report them to the police if they didn't give you $500. But you can not make a legitimate argument that they owe you $500 for anything.

You may reply back to me again, using the Reply to Expert link, if you have additional questions.

Until you rate me highly for my service, I will not be credited with helping you. Would you please rate me now, based on my assistance to you in understanding the law.

I wish you the best in 2013,

Doug
LawTalk, Lawyer
Category: Criminal Law
Satisfied Customers: 27889
Experience: 30 years legal experience
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