How JustAnswer Works:

  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.

Ask Roger Your Own Question

Roger
Roger, Lawyer
Category: Criminal Law
Satisfied Customers: 26965
Experience:  BV Rated by Martindale-Hubbell; SuperLawyer rating by Thompson-Reuters
6704987
Type Your Criminal Law Question Here...
Roger is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

A client was presented with the choice between being sued for

Resolved Question:

A client was presented with the choice between being sued for punitive damages related to a past DUI offense (involving a car accident), or giving testimony against the bars where the client drank on the eventing of the DUI. The client was notified that they were being sued for punitive damages related to their DUI/car accident, and so the client scheduled a meeting with their DUI lawyer to discuss this development. At the meeting, the lawyer representing the individual seeking punitive damages was unexpectedly present. Together, the two lawyers made the case to the client that if they gave testimony for the lawsuit against the bars, punitive damages would not be pursued. Effort was taken to emphasize the potential severity of the punitive damages. Does this constitute what is known as 'abuse of process'? The client does not wish to testify or participate in any way in the lawsuit against the bars. What should the client do in this situation?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Criminal Law
Expert:  Roger replied 1 year ago.
Hi - my name is XXXXX XXXXX I'm a Criminal Law litigation attorney. Thanks for your question.

Abuse of process generally involves lying about a judicial process being commenced when it hasn't, or some other similar proceeding. Here's a good link that outlines the matter: http://definitions.uslegal.com/a/abuse-of-process/

However, the person doesn't have to favorably testify against the bar if he/she doesn't want to - - that's up to him. Also, the person has the right to refuse to testify IF it would result in self incrimination under the 5th Amendment.

It just sounds like they're offering a deal to the person that they won't sue in exchange for his helpful testimony. If he refuses, then they may sue, but getting punitive damages is a VERY difficult thing to accomplish.
Roger, Lawyer
Category: Criminal Law
Satisfied Customers: 26965
Experience: BV Rated by Martindale-Hubbell; SuperLawyer rating by Thompson-Reuters
Roger and 4 other Criminal Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Thank you for the reply .being hit with punitive damages was presented to my friend as being likely, with agreeing to testify the only way to avoid them, an either-or proposition. Do you think it would be worthwhile to get a second legal opinion?
Expert:  Roger replied 1 year ago.
Punitive damages are VERY DIFFICULT to get. They are meant to punish someone for extraordinary actions or to make an example out of the person to prevent future similar actions. Judges are very reluctant to grant them as well. That's not to say that a lawsuit can't be filed asking for punitives, but it's a difficult case to win.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
That's interesting and very helpful. That the viability of the lawsuit and punitive damages against my friend were never discussed (it was presented mainly as a nasty alternative to agreeing to testify) seems odd to me. There's no direct evidence that my friend's attorneys isn't acting in their best interest, of course, but I'm going to suggest he seek an outside opinion. Thank you for for your insight.
Expert:  Roger replied 1 year ago.
I think that's good advice.
Roger, Lawyer
Category: Criminal Law
Satisfied Customers: 26965
Experience: BV Rated by Martindale-Hubbell; SuperLawyer rating by Thompson-Reuters
Roger and 4 other Criminal Law Specialists are ready to help you

JustAnswer in the News:

 
 
 
Ask-a-doc Web sites: If you've got a quick question, you can try to get an answer from sites that say they have various specialists on hand to give quick answers... Justanswer.com.
JustAnswer.com...has seen a spike since October in legal questions from readers about layoffs, unemployment and severance.
Web sites like justanswer.com/legal
...leave nothing to chance.
Traffic on JustAnswer rose 14 percent...and had nearly 400,000 page views in 30 days...inquiries related to stress, high blood pressure, drinking and heart pain jumped 33 percent.
Tory Johnson, GMA Workplace Contributor, discusses work-from-home jobs, such as JustAnswer in which verified Experts answer people’s questions.
I will tell you that...the things you have to go through to be an Expert are quite rigorous.
 
 
 

What Customers are Saying:

 
 
 
  • Your Expert advise has provided insight on a difficult situation. Thank you so much for the prompt response. I will definitely recommend your website to my friends. Norma Pensacola, FL
< Last | Next >
  • Your Expert advise has provided insight on a difficult situation. Thank you so much for the prompt response. I will definitely recommend your website to my friends. Norma Pensacola, FL
  • Mr. Kaplun clearly had an exceptional understanding of the issue and was able to explain it concisely. I would recommend JustAnswer to anyone. Great service that lives up to its promises! Gary B. Edmond, OK
  • My Expert was fast and seemed to have the answer to my taser question at the tips of her fingers. Communication was excellent. I left feeling confident in her answer. Eric Redwood City, CA
  • I am very pleased with JustAnswer as a place to go for divorce or criminal law knowledge and insight. Michael Wichita, KS
  • PaulMJD helped me with questions I had regarding an urgent legal matter. His answers were excellent. Three H. Houston, TX
  • Anne was extremely helpful. Her information put me in the right direction for action that kept me legal, possible saving me a ton of money in the future. Thank you again, Anne!! Elaine Atlanta, GA
  • It worked great. I had the facts and I presented them to my ex-landlord and she folded and returned my deposit. The 50 bucks I spent with you solved my problem. Tony Apopka, FL
 
 
 

Meet The Experts:

 
 
 
  • Fran L.

    JustAnswer Criminal Law Mentor

    Satisfied Customers:

    8061
    18 yrs of NYC public defense. Extensive arraignment, hearing, trial experience.
< Last | Next >
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/RE/retiredlawyer/2012-6-6_19326_franL.64x64.jpg Fran L.'s Avatar

    Fran L.

    JustAnswer Criminal Law Mentor

    Satisfied Customers:

    8061
    18 yrs of NYC public defense. Extensive arraignment, hearing, trial experience.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/RA/ratioscripta/2012-6-13_2955_foto3.64x64.jpg Ely's Avatar

    Ely

    Counselor at Law

    Satisfied Customers:

    2079
    Private practice with focus on family, criminal, PI, consumer protection, and business consultation.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/NA/nathanmoorelaw/2011-5-31_21375_headshotbig.64x64.jpg Nate's Avatar

    Nate

    Lawyer

    Satisfied Customers:

    1625
    Over 10 years of criminal defense practice.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/LA/LawTalk/2012-6-6_17379_LawTalk.64x64.JPG LawTalk's Avatar

    LawTalk

    Lawyer

    Satisfied Customers:

    1434
    30 years legal experience
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/PH/philip.simmons/2012-6-7_161915_BIGPhilipSimmons.64x64.jpg P. Simmons's Avatar

    P. Simmons

    Lawyer

    Satisfied Customers:

    1418
    16 yrs. of experience including criminal law.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/marshadjd/2009-6-1_194320_marshajd.jpg Marsha411JD's Avatar

    Marsha411JD

    Lawyer

    Satisfied Customers:

    1380
    Licensed attorney with 27 yrs. exp. in criminal law
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/RO/RobertJDFL/2012-6-6_175352_7538220120606.64x64.jpg RobertJDFL's Avatar

    RobertJDFL

    Lawyer

    Satisfied Customers:

    1300
    Experienced in multiple areas of the law.
 
 
 

Related Criminal Law Questions

Chat Now With A Criminal Lawyer
Roger
Roger
Criminal Lawyer
26965 Satisfied Customers
BV Rated by Martindale-Hubbell; SuperLawyer rating by Thompson-Reuters