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Lucy, Esq.
Lucy, Esq., Lawyer
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 27623
Experience:  Attorney with experience in family law.
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Advice: First off thank you information you've provided

Customer Question

Advice: First off thank you for the information you've provided around my other questions. Your answers have been very consise. I'll try to be as to the point as possible but my situation is a bit complex. 1. In February 2014, my ex-wife filed a contempt
charge with an adjoined modification to custody. 2. This case lingered on for a period of about 11 months. In January 2015 a stipulation was entered that identified the contested difference in support payments as $32. Further the filed motion for change in
custody has effectively been abandoned. 3. As a result of the Contempt charge, I had incurred legal expenses of 10-12k. This resulted in my business suffering and many required annual items such as annual corporate fees and tax preparation for my business
and my personal tax filings. 4. I had become effectively without work in Nov 2014 after my business had lost the only active project that was supplying revenue. 5. In January 2015 I had filed a motion seeking a reduction in support given my lack of employment.
6. I had received a discovery demand seeking documents associated with 38 different areas. 7. I had, to the best of my ability, supplied all of the documents available but despite this effort the court has applied sanctions. 8. One month later Opposing Counsel
has sought another round of sanctions for not meeting their expectations in the area of discovery. 9. I've had to release my attorney, due to the dismal financial situation I find my self in at this point. I have accrued 20k in new legal fees, and 5500 in
sanctions, with another 3500 in sanctions being sought. These costs are the reason I am unable to comply with the discovery demands. Since last year I have been unable to complete the filing of tax documents for my business and myself and these continual stream
of expenses, especially after having been unemployed for about 5-6 months are making it impossible to meet the demands. With the above situation is there any advice or suggestions that you might be able to offer around what I might do to seek relief? I am
already in the process of completing a bankruptcy, given that I am having to apply most of my business revenue towards towards meeting the compliance requirements of the business and my personal tax reporting. We are actually having to proceed with an Estate
Sale to liquidate most of our personal property so that we can move out of our current rental property, which we are having difficulty paying for now. Any advice would be appreciated. Thank you
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  Lucy, Esq. replied 1 year ago.
Hi,
I'm sorry to hear you're having such a hard time.
I'm sorry, but the site doesn't allow us to give general advice or suggestions like that - that's prohibited by the laws of your state and mine.
Do you have specific questions I can answer about this situation?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Can cost related obstacles be sited as a reason for an inability to comply with discovery demands and if so how do I respond to the discovery demand and the motion for sanctions?
Expert:  Lucy, Esq. replied 1 year ago.
To beat a request for sanctions, you have to be able to show that you're unable to comply with the discovery demands. Essentially, the judge can impose sanctions if a person WILLFULLY disobeys a court order. So, the job as the person being accused of contempt is to show that they had no ability to file the order. If compliance is beyond your financial means, that is a valid defense.
It could also help to produce whatever documents you do have or can get without paying for (like statements you can download from your bank's website) as a show of good faith. That way, the judge sees that it's not you trying to hide something - you just don't have the money to get everything else copied.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Apologies I couldn't respond to your offer for a direct phone contact, I am currently working onsite with a customer so posting questions is the easiest way for me to interact. By chance do you offer assistance with the preparation of documents like the response to the Discovery request?
Expert:  Lucy, Esq. replied 1 year ago.
The site sends out those offers. It is a violation of state law for me to speak with customers on the phone. I neither offer nor can accept phone calls with customers.
I'm unfortunately not able to assist with preparing documents, as that would be the practice of law, which is not permitted. I'm happy to answer any questions you have via this forum.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Thank you for the clarification. Regarding the Motion for additional discovery sanctions that was filed on 7/27/15 for a case that is scheduled for an appearance on 9/18, what is the timeframe that I have to respond to this motion?
Expert:  Lucy, Esq. replied 1 year ago.
Papers opposing a motion must be filed and served on the other party at least 9 court days before the hearing. Cal Code Civ. P., Section 1005. That time is increased by 5 calendar days if the papers are being served by mail sent within California. Additional time would be required if mailing outside of California.

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