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 Chris T., JD Your Own Question

Chris T., JD
Chris T., JD, Attorney
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 3873
Experience:  Experienced in both state and federal court.
45002201
Type Your Legal Question Here...
Chris T., JD is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

Hello! I just received a letter from Johnson&Pham,LLP claiming

Customer Question

Hello! I just received a letter from Johnson&Pham,LLP claiming that I sold a counterfeit item on Ebay and ask me to pay $20,000. I am so scared, I didn't know that the item was counterfeit and I stopped selling it once ebay asked me to. I made about $2000 from it and I really don't have that much money to pay them...
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Legal
Expert:  Chris T., JD replied 1 year ago.

TexLawyer : Good evening. I'll be assisting you with your question.
JACUSTOMER-ca68sgic- :

Hello. Would you tell me what I need to do next?

TexLawyer : I can tell you that their demand is significantly out of line with your actions. But, that is very common. Lawyers send out letters demanding large sums of money, never expecting to collect that amount.
JACUSTOMER-ca68sgic- :

Hi

TexLawyer : Can you tell me more about what the letter said?
JACUSTOMER-ca68sgic- :

yes

JACUSTOMER-ca68sgic- :

it says 1) i have to provide a full and complete statement of my actions

JACUSTOMER-ca68sgic- :

2)a full and complete accounting of how I acquired the item

JACUSTOMER-ca68sgic- :

3)I have to transport all the items to them

JACUSTOMER-ca68sgic- :

4)my full accounting of my prior disposition

JACUSTOMER-ca68sgic- :

of any counterfeit item

TexLawyer : What were you selling? Handbags?
JACUSTOMER-ca68sgic- :

no it is otterbox

JACUSTOMER-ca68sgic- :

iphone5 case

TexLawyer : OK.
JACUSTOMER-ca68sgic- :

it comes from china, and that company even provided me with some kind of certificate

JACUSTOMER-ca68sgic- :

there is a COMPLAINT accompany with the letter

TexLawyer : It is a crime to knowingly sell counterfeit goods. They are most likely trying to ascertain the source of counterfeit Otterboxes.
TexLawyer : Has the complaint been filed in court? Is it file stamped?
JACUSTOMER-ca68sgic- :

I don't know..

JACUSTOMER-ca68sgic- :

How can I know that?

TexLawyer : Is there a stamp on it with a date and a number?
TexLawyer : LIke a rubber stamp would look.
JACUSTOMER-ca68sgic- :

no

JACUSTOMER-ca68sgic- :

there is not any stamp on it

JACUSTOMER-ca68sgic- :

It is just like an ordinary letter, but with a COMPLAINT

TexLawyer : OK. Then it has not been filed, which is good.
JACUSTOMER-ca68sgic- :

ok

JACUSTOMER-ca68sgic- :

they only mentioned one of the items i sold. so the total money is 33.78

TexLawyer : You basically have two options. First, you can contact them and offer to give them the information they want if they agree not to sue you.
JACUSTOMER-ca68sgic- :

do I have to pay the money?

JACUSTOMER-ca68sgic- :

That is just too much for me..I am a student..

TexLawyer : Second, you could wait and see what they will do next, i.e. if they will actually sue.
JACUSTOMER-ca68sgic- :

....What if they actually sue

JACUSTOMER-ca68sgic- :

that really scares me

TexLawyer : The most you would have to pay is what you took in plus their costs. If they actually sue, you could have to pay a much large sum which would include their attorney's fees.
JACUSTOMER-ca68sgic- :

so I'd better call them and tell them?

TexLawyer : Clearly, the safer move is to contact them now and reach an agreement. Keep in mind that you have information they want, so you actually have a fairly strong position.
JACUSTOMER-ca68sgic- :

what if the get the information and still want me to pay the money?..

JACUSTOMER-ca68sgic- :

How can I make a firm agreement with them?..

JACUSTOMER-ca68sgic- :

like a paperwork?

TexLawyer : If you make them agree up front that you won't in exchange for the information, that won't be an issue. Basically, you get them to agree to refrain from brining suit if you give them the info. Yes, get it in writing.
JACUSTOMER-ca68sgic- :

Do you think I should get lawyer for it?

TexLawyer : My guess is that they will want to avoid bringing suit considering that you are a student and they won't be able to get much money out of it.
JACUSTOMER-ca68sgic- :

I really hope so...

TexLawyer : At this point, I would say no. Call them and try to settle it as I've described above. If that doesn't work, then you should consider hiring a lawyer. I would just hate for you to incur the cost of an attorney when it may not be needed.
JACUSTOMER-ca68sgic- :

Thank you so much for being considerate

JACUSTOMER-ca68sgic- :

should I ask them to send me a letter promising that they won't sue me before I tell them where i got those phone cases?

JACUSTOMER-ca68sgic- :

Is that too strong? Like a threaten?

TexLawyer : Yes. You need an agreement in writing before you do anything.
JACUSTOMER-ca68sgic- :

OK. So how much money do you think I should pay them?

TexLawyer : No, they are used to the way negotiations go .
JACUSTOMER-ca68sgic- :

Ireally have no idea...

TexLawyer : I'd start off trying to get them to take no money. If that doesn't work, I would not go any higher than what you received from the sale of their trademarked items.
TexLawyer : Their action against you is most likely less about what money they can or can't squeeze out of you and more about protecting their trademark.
JACUSTOMER-ca68sgic- :

But they are demanding 20,000...

JACUSTOMER-ca68sgic- :

Ok I will try talk to them today or tomorrow...

JACUSTOMER-ca68sgic- :

Can I ask you further question after I talk to them?

TexLawyer : Forget about the $20,000. That is just a number they picked out of thin air.
TexLawyer : Sure.
JACUSTOMER-ca68sgic- :

:)Thank you so much for helping me...

TexLawyer : The reason that $20,000 has no meaning is because they have no idea how much you made.
TexLawyer : Glad to help.
TexLawyer : If I can't do anything else for you right now, please remember to "Rate" my answer. Good luck!
TexLawyer : Also, if you want to ask me a question in the future, you can direct it to me by including "this question is for Texlawyer" in the title.
JACUSTOMER-ca68sgic- :

Do I have to select service right now? or can I do that after I talk to them?:)

JACUSTOMER-ca68sgic- :

OK I get it!

JACUSTOMER-ca68sgic- :

Thank you I'll rate now

Chris T., JD, Attorney
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 3873
Experience: Experienced in both state and federal court.
Chris T., JD and 15 other Legal Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Hi! I am going to call them tomorrow. Do you think I should provide them with the info of the people who buy from me? And what if a person is in this situation and is an international student? Do you think he/she should let them know this?

Expert:  Chris T., JD replied 1 year ago.
I think you should hold back as much information as you can until you have some kind of agreement on their part to not sue you.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Hello. They asked me for every receipt on my paypal and the screenshot of the purchase that I made originally from the factory... but they said they have to pass those information up to otterbox before they can make any information. Do you think I should give them the information? Or should I insist on having a promise before I give them the information?

Expert:  Chris T., JD replied 1 year ago.
What did they say about the potential for a lawsuit?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

They say.. They are not going to sue me during the negotiation.. And the goal of them is to prevent sue and reach settlement between their client and me... They basically say nothing...

Customer: replied 1 year ago.

 



  • Formal notice of date of full cessation of all OTTERBOX® related product sales (You would have been provided notice from eBay of you infringement activity before my office's engagement, please provide the eBay notice email)

  • Supplier Information- Any and all documents relating to any person(s) or entity(ies) from whom you purchased anyOTTERBOX® products, any and all shipping records related to your supplier, and total inventory of any OTTERBOX®products purchased for resale;

  • Sales- Any and all financial information documents relating to your number of sales (Amazon detailed merchant account statements; Paypal detailed merchant account statements), profit (net and gross; Paypal detailed merchant account statements), and sales recipients (Amazon detailed merchant account statements; Paypal detailed merchant account statements) of any OTTERBOX® products; (See attached exemplars)

  • Other Accounts- Any and all other seller IDs or financial accounts on any medium of which you transacted sales ofOTTERBOX® products, and the aforementioned documents thereto;

  • A summation sheet of the aforementioned accounting (so that both parties have a point of reference during negotiations); and

  • Forfeiture of all remaining counterfeit OTTERBOX® products with itemization and chain of custody documentation (I request voluntary forfeiture prior to production of documents to ensure full compliance with my client's cease and desist demand; therefore, please update me as to your shipping of the products).


 


This is what they request...

Expert:  Chris T., JD replied 1 year ago.

You could offer to give them the information they are looking for, but with the names redacted. That way, they can evaluate what you have, but you still have something to hold in order to get the lawsuit waiver. Also, you should ask that the negotiations thus far be memorialized in a letter or email (probably email). That way, you are protected during the negation process and you can hold them to their word. If you don't have anything in writing, they can always deny they promised something.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Do you mean the buyers' names?

Expert:  Chris T., JD replied 1 year ago.
Yes, and your supplier's name and identifying information. Most likely, what they are really after is the person you are receiving the counterfeit items from.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Ok I hope so.... Should I provide them with the money in every sale?

Expert:  Chris T., JD replied 1 year ago.
Yes.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Should I refund them the item they have bought at this time? Since they actually bought one from me..

Expert:  Chris T., JD replied 1 year ago.
Refund your customers?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

O I mean refund this law firm.. Since they actually bought one and confirmed with otterbox that the case was counterfeit...

Expert:  Chris T., JD replied 1 year ago.
There isn't a need to make that offer.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

I have a total sale of about $6000, but I only make less than $2000 from it, which is my total net surplus. Because of the shipping fee, and the cost of my resources etc.. So how much money do you think I should offer them at most?..


 


PS.. Should I start a new conversation after this question?..

Expert:  Chris T., JD replied 1 year ago.
I would not offer them any money up front.

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:

 
 
 
  • 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
< Last | Next >
  • 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
  • Not only did he answer my Michigan divorce question but was also able to help me out with it, too. I have since won my legal case on this matter and thank you so much for it. Lee Michigan
 
 
 

Meet The Experts:

 
 
 
  • Tina

    Lawyer

    Satisfied Customers:

    8436
    JD, BBA Over 25 years legal and business experience.
< Last | Next >
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/MU/multistatelaw/2011-11-27_173951_Tinaglamourshotworkglow102011.64x64.jpg Tina's Avatar

    Tina

    Lawyer

    Satisfied Customers:

    8436
    JD, BBA Over 25 years legal and business experience.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/RA/ratioscripta/2012-6-13_2955_foto3.64x64.jpg Ely's Avatar

    Ely

    Counselor at Law

    Satisfied Customers:

    19941
    Private practice with focus on family, criminal, PI, consumer protection, and business consultation.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/FL/FLAandNYLawyer/2012-1-27_14349_3Fotolia25855429M.64x64.jpg FiveStarLaw's Avatar

    FiveStarLaw

    Attorney

    Satisfied Customers:

    8189
    25 years of experience helping people like you.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/jespoag/2008-12-17_222355_jessepic.jpg JPEsq's Avatar

    JPEsq

    Attorney

    Satisfied Customers:

    2132
    Experience as general attorney, in house counsel, SSDI, Family Law attorney, and law professor
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/gsenmartin/2008-04-22_214950_me1.jpg Guillermo J. Senmartin, Esq.'s Avatar

    Guillermo J. Senmartin, Esq.

    Attorney

    Satisfied Customers:

    110
    7+ years of experience handling various legal matters.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/PA/PaulmoJD/2013-10-10_195858_JAImage.64x64.jpg Law Educator, Esq.'s Avatar

    Law Educator, Esq.

    Attorney

    Satisfied Customers:

    31621
    JA Mentor -Attorney Labor/employment, corporate, sports law, admiralty/maritime and civil rights law
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/dkaplun/2009-05-17_173121_headshot_1_2.jpg Dimitry K., Esq.'s Avatar

    Dimitry K., Esq.

    Attorney

    Satisfied Customers:

    15975
    Multiple jurisdictions, specialize in business/contract disputes, estate creation and administration.
 
 
 

Related Legal Questions

Chat Now With A Lawyer
Chris T., JD
Chris T., JD
Lawyer
3873 Satisfied Customers
Experienced in both state and federal court.