HI, Eddie, Thank you for requesting me. Please let me apologize for the delay; we are experiencing some technical problems, including notifications that a customer has requested us. Wendy is moderator and it was really nice of her to let me know. She realized that I did not receive the Notification which the system usually generates when she saw how much time had elapsed because she knows that I never allow any of my customers to wait, so she realized something must be wrong.
Please allow me to dispense with the important things first, and that is to tell you I missed someone who could keep me on my toes when it comes to Star Trek :) but I was also wondering what happened with your case.
I am sincerely very glad to hear that everything went well with the Creedmore lawyer as well as the evaluator.
Regarding the lawyer issue - $10,000 is extremely high for this situation because he would not be representing the mother which would entail much, much more work. Although $2,500 is much more in line with the amount of work that might have to be done, I still do not think you should be incurring legal fees because of the sister's litigious and jealous nature. Definitely do not put $2,500 on your credit cards, the interest rate is too high. I am still wrestling with the idea as to why you should even be involved, be questioned, incur legal fees, without even being named in the action itself. No matter what Order the Judge enters, it will have no effect on you whatsoever because (1) You have not been named as a party Defendant; (2) You were not served with process as a party Defendant; and as a result (3) The Court has no personal jurisdiction over you and cannot Order you to do, or refrain from doing anything.
I also do not understand why this case is still going on. The Evaluator should submit his report to the Judge who should immediately dismiss the sister's/daughter's Complaint with Prejudice, meaning that she cannot refile to start a new action on the same issue against the same individual. This is a Guardianship proceeding. The Principal has been found to be competent and having full mental capacity by the Court Appointed Evaluator. This should satisfy the Judge. Since the Principal has been found to be competent, there is nothing else that can be litigated regarding the Principal and any attempt to do so would be a serious violation and infringement on the Principal's right to life, liberty, and property. As I see it, there is no other issue here. If the daughter thinks that her brother is exercising influence on the mother, that is just too bad and there's not a darn thing she, or the Court can do about it. If a parent has full mental capacity and chooses to show favoritism towards one of her children who has been exceptionally nice to her, cares for her, keeps her laughing and in good spirits, well, that is her God-given and Constitutionally protected right to do so and nobody can order her to do otherwise.
I would have a serious talk with the Creedmore lawyer in the mother's presence about how to proceed from here, it's very simple - Present the Evaluator's report to the Judge, ask him ifhe has any questions he would like to ask either the mother, or the Evaluator and his report, then dismiss the daughter's Complaint. Period, end of story, end of case. The daughter should not force anyone to incur additional legal fees based on her whimsy. In fact, the Creedmore lawyer should present to the Judge the Evaluator's Report, the 2 Florida actions filed by the daughter that were dismissed, copies of your legal fees, copies of legal fees which the mother unnecessarily incurred, and ask the Judge to dismiss the daughter's Complaint with prejudice and Order the daughter to pay all legal fees incurred by the mother and incurred by you. At this stage, it could not be any simpler.
2. There is something in the law which lawyers include in their pleadings against a litigious individual who constantly files lawsuits without any basis or evidence. The pleadings include an allegation that,
"the action is frivolous, arbitrary, vexatious, is without merit, and brought for the sole purpose of harassing their adversary, and in your case, not to mention that the issues she claims are Res Judicata".
In these circumstances and definitely in your case, Attorney's fees are both warranted and awarded by the Court.
When an individual constantly brings lawsuits that have no merit and are brought for ulterior motives, including to harass their adversary, and if the Court declares them to be "Vexatious Litigants", they are no longer permitted to file a lawsuit against anyone, without first requesting and receiving Court permission to do so.
3. An issue is Res Judicata if the same issue and the same parties have already litigated the issue. The sister tried twice in Florida to have the mother declared incompetent and have a Guardian appointed. She is doing the same thing in a New York Court because she did not like the decision of the Florida Courts, not because there was any change in circumstances which would warrant bringing another competency hearing. That is why it is important to bring this issue to the attention of the Judge with the 2 Florida cases and their decisions and ask for Attorney's fees. When she has to start paying Attorney's fees and incur this as the cost of her "fun", only then will she stop, or at least think twice, before bringing another action,
4. She should be sued for harassment and defamation of character if she is making false statements about you which ruin your name and reputation in the community.
Defamation is a tort and is governed by tort law. False statements that are written are called 'libel" while false statements that are spoken are called "slander". Libel, slander, and other forms of maligning an individual fall under the broad "umbrella" of defamation. In order to prevail in an action for libel, slander, and defamation of character, in general, the Plaintiff must prove the four (4) elements which are the same for each:
1. The false statement is "uttered" or "written"
2. The Defendant knew that the statement was false, or was made in "reckless disregard for the truth;
3. The Defendant "published" them to a third party - "Made known" to others
4. The Plaintiff suffered damages to his or her name and reputation in the community.
In defamation lawsuits, the Plaintiff will seek damages as well as an Injunction so that the Defendant(s) are prohibited from continuing to defame the Plaintiff. This would appear to be just what you need if she is ruining your name and reputation.
Let me knowif you have any questions,
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