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Brandon M.
Brandon M., Counselor at Law
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 12235
Experience:  Attorney experienced in numerous areas of law.
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I tried this once before and was told to provide a direct question

Resolved Question:

I tried this once before and was told to provide a direct question when I didn't even know it. I'm hoping this time I can ask a direct question and not have to give details. lol
I have actually a few, if that's alright. I just need to know alot of things in a short time.
1: Does the law actually require a judge to be impartial? And if yes, does a judge have to give a case to someone else if he cannot be?
2: Can the courts actually force a voluntary organization like Bureau of Vocational Rehabilitation into giving a job assessment? People at BVR do not like the courts because they make BVR do such things, rather than pay for their own assessment.
3: How can I find a lawyer who will take my case against the city of Riverside, OH, and their police force that won't expect an arm and a leg? I only get a disability check. I tried legal aid before only to be told they don't take such cases.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Legal
Expert:  Brandon M. replied 1 year ago.

Brandon M. :

Hello there.

Brandon M. :

Thank you for your questions. Can you see this?

Customer:

Yes.

Brandon M. :

Great. To start, please allow me to answer your questions in the order that they were presented. To avoid confusion, please allow me to finish the questions at hand before asking new questions.

Customer:

Ok

Brandon M. :

The first question is whether the law requires a judge to be impartial, and if the judge must give the case over to someone else if s/he cannot be impartial. The answer to both questions is "yes". There are some situations where a judge is automatically presumed to be biased--such as where the judge has a financial outcome in a case. In those situations, the judge is automatically required to "recuse" himself/herself. However, even if there is not an automatic basis, a judge must remove himself/herself if s/he believes that for whatever reason they cannot act impartially.

Brandon M. :

The second question is whether the courts can force a voluntary organization like the Bureau of Vocational Rehabilitation to give a job assessment. I'm not familiar with that particular organization, so I'll need a bit more information. You described them as "voluntary"--are they a non-profit organization?

Customer:

I know you told me not to ask a new question. But I want to know how I can record this so I can read it later.

Brandon M. :

No problem. There are three options. (1) You can highlight the text with your left mouse key, click with your right mouse key, and then copy and paste it into a new document, (2) you can come back to this web site: http://www.justanswer.com/law/7wiay-tried-once-told-provide-direct-question.html , or (3) you can email our customer service atXXX@XXXXXX.XXX and request that they send you a copy.

Customer:

I don't know if they are a non-profit organization. I do know that people come to them by choice. That they do not make a person.

Brandon M. :

If you don't mind, I would like just a moment to investigate their status. If they are a governmental entity, the answer could be different than if they are a private non-profit organization. Just a moment, please.

Customer:

I did a google search and discovered they can be found under rsc.ohio.gov

Brandon M. :

Ok, The Ohio Bureau of Vocational Rehabilitation is a governmental organization.

Brandon M. :

It appears that you were able to come to the same conclusion that I did.

Brandon M. :

Now that we have that information, the answer will actually depend on the situation. In some cases it may be possible, but others it would not. Did you have a specific scenario in mind?

Customer:

All I know is the judge for my case (was convicted, but judge was not impartial, and no actual proof was given by prosecutor) expects me to get a job for some reason, I learned from staff at BVR that they don't like the courts because the courts use them to gain assessments, one person says the courts are too cheap to pay for their own assessment. I'm wanting to know the answer because I doubt anyone in BVR knows or has the time to know. And maybe I can help them out with the answer.

Customer:

They are a state agency, and the court is a county court. Also since the people they normally get are given a choice to go through with it or not, I assume there is no legal reason they can be forced to take someone against their will.

Brandon M. :

Well, every state agency has certain mandates--services that they are required to perform. The "county courts" are the state's courts for the county, but they are still state courts, and they can order enforcement of the laws of the state of Ohio. If a government agency or bureau is not acting in compliance with the law--if they are not fulfilling their legislative mandate--the county court can order them to fulfill that mandate. So if the BVR is required by law to give someone a job assessment and they fail or refuse to do so, the court can order them to follow through with their mandate (this happens most frequently when the governmental entity is low on financial resources). However, if the BVR or any other governmental agency is not required by law to perform a duty, the courts generally do not have the power to order them to do so.

Brandon M. :

So although I don't know what the history is with the person to whom you spoke, and I don't know their background or whether their information was conveyed accurately, it sounds like they're basically describing the situation where an individual did have a right to be assessed and the BVR "didn't like it" because they lacked the budget to follow through with their mandate.

Customer:

From what I heard, it sounds like the courts don't have the power to make them, but most in BVR don't know this. How can I find out if there is a law requiring BVR to take such cases? I don't think I can learn of it from BVR

Brandon M. :

Actually, all of the duties are enumerated in Ohio Revised Statute 3304.16. It can be found here: http://codes.ohio.gov/orc/3304.16

Brandon M. :

There is no mention of an assessment in that statute. As I mentioned, it's always possible that a unique circumstance arose, that the mandate of the law changed and the person with whom you spoke gave bad information, or that they were just wrong.

Customer:

What about my third question?

Brandon M. :

The third question is how to find an affordable lawyer that will take a case against the city of Riverside, Ohio and their police force. My recommendation is to contact the Dayton, Ohio Bar Association's lawyer referral service: http://www.daybar.org/public/lrs/

Brandon M. :

If you telephone, you can tell them your needs and they will match you with anyone who meets your criteria.

Customer:

I tried that already. The only cheap thing about that is the amount you have to pay for an initial interview. After that you still have to pay the lawyer's retainer fee.

Brandon M. :

Ok, let's consider the options that leaves. What else have you tried?

Brandon M. :

You mentioned that you tried legal aid--specifically, what legal aid organization did you contact?

Customer:

Ever since the beginning I tried everything I could think of, which was not much. And all I could learn. Which was not much. At first I learned to start an internal investigation, I tried complaining to the chief of police (four attempts were ignored). Later on I tried legal-aid, they told me they did not take such cases at the time. I then learned the FBI investigates such things. No reply there. Then more recently found the department of justice's website claimed they deal with cases involving discrimination, but one part said they deal with cases that may not involve discrimination. Reply I got told me they only deal in discrimination cases, which contradicted what I found on their site. I also tried your dayton bar association's lawyer referral service.

Customer:

I'm a common person, dealing with an entire precinct of corruption, with no knowledge of law and no way to get such knowledge quickly because lawyers expect money before they will even answer a question.

Customer:

I recently discovered one of the people involved in my case is actually being sued by someone else, and I'm hoping to contact that person's lawyer.

Brandon M. :

Which legal aid organization did you contact?

Customer:

the only one I know of. Legal-aid.

Customer:

I found their website online and went through there.

Brandon M. :

No problem. Let's see which organization that would be. Do you still know their website?

Customer:

no. but i think it'd be easy to find.

Customer:

lawolaw.org

Brandon M. :

If you don't mind, it would probably be helpful if you could locate that information. If you can't, we can work around it, but it would help.

Customer:

Just gave the website above your answer.

Customer:

lawolaw.org

Brandon M. :

Ok, ,that would be the Legal Aid of Western Ohio.

Brandon M. :

How did you find them?

Customer:

Don't recall. I would think that I did an online search. Would be the most logical way

Brandon M. :

Thank you. I have a few things to cover with you, if you'll allow me another moment:

Customer:

take two, they're small. lol

Customer:

It is nearly 3am, I cannot stay online. How can we continue this later? Or do I have to pay now?

Brandon M. :

First, I recommend again contacting the Dayton Bar Association's Referral Service and telling their intake specialist your situation. They can and should refer you to any legal aid associations in your area that may be able to help. One such organization is Ohio Legal Services. You can visit their website here: http://www.ohiolegalservices.org/public/legal_problem or you can telephone them at(NNN) NNN-NNNN There are several organizations. Also, there is nothing wrong with asking the legal aid services for possible referrals if you get turned down. Even if they "don't handle" a type of case, they network with tons of attorneys and likely know someone who does handle your type of matter. If you must, go outside the area--to Cincinnati for example. Any Ohio licensed attorney can practice law anywhere in Ohio.

That said, you should also be aware of two things. First, an attorney has to bring in a lot of business just to break even (and nobody works to break even). An attorney has to pay various professional fees, licensing fees, and continuing legal education fees, malpractice insurance, and overhead costs for daily operations, which include things like office space, supplies, janitorial services, and utilities. If they have any sort of support staff, they have to pay salary, workers compensation insurance, employer taxes, etc. This is just to break even. The attorneys are usually self-employed, so they have to pay self-employment tax and they if they've graduated law school within the last 25 years, they're likely still paying down on their law school loans which usually run in excess of $100,000. There are also additional expenses that are somewhat complex to explain, but it's not a cheap line of work. That said, they've made their bed and now they're lying in it so I can't feel sorry for any of them, but it's usually not the case that an attorney will turn down helping someone at no cost because they don't want to help--it's usually because taking a case pro bono means that they're not spending that time instead on a paying client and they have no financial choice but to turn down the case. Incidentally, malpractice insurance costs vary based on a lot of factors, but it typically costs around $2,000 per month. That's just $2,000 per month that disappears right down the drain in case the attorney gets sued, in which case the attorney has to pay even more.

This leads me to my second point, which is that the demand for free or low cost legal services greatly exceeds the supply. Greatly. There is also a demand for free auto mechanics, free doctors, free everything, but the difference with attorneys is that when you spend the day listening to people's problems, you can't help but want to get involved sometimes even if the person can't pay. I seriously don't know any attorney in private practice that doesn't provide some sort of free help from time to time. But the need greatly exceed the supply, and most people are either broke or living paycheck to paycheck. I am going to be brutally honest: when you present a case to a legal aid clinic or even to an attorney, you won't have a chance unless you present it in a way that communicates that it is worth their resources. If you say "I'm a common person dealing with an entire precinct of corruption", you are communicating "if you take my case, the demands it will place on you will prevent you from helping anyone else for the next 3-5 years." When you say that you have "no knowledge of law and no way to get such knowledge quickly", you are sending the message that you are not able or willing to contribute to the progression of your own case, so the attorney will have to do all the leg work. I have no idea if that is actually true, but that is what the attorney would hear. So when you present your case to an attorney and you are basically asking for a handout in the form of their time resources, you have to be clear that your number one goal is to help them help you in whatever way possible to ensure that the matter is disposed of quickly and easily. You have to present your case in as simple terms as possible--"(1) The court ordered me to find work, and I haven't. (2) I believe that the judge was biased, and here's the reason I believe this. How can I help you help me?"

All that said, you should never end a conversation in your search withing asking for a referral elsewhere. This problem wasn't created overnight, so it naturally can't be resolved overnight, but I do hope that my tone was well received since you can't hear my voice or read my facial expressions--I want nothing but the best for you in your situation, and I want justice to prevail for you. I did try to be direct in a way that was useful, and I just really want to apologize on a personal level if the tone of my words conveyed anything less than complete respect for you and your situation. I do understand the anxiety that you are feeling and the frustration of finding someone who can become more involved in your case, but I would hate for that frustration and anxiety to complicate your ability to find help. Presentation of the need is extremely crucial because the people who will be helping you definitely pick and choose their cases based on numerous factors, and it's critical that you send the message that your case is worth taking. I wish you the best.

Customer:

I did not expect to have to get an answer right away.

Brandon M. :

I'm sorry that took so long. I finished a few minutes ago, but it did not appear to have gone through. Thank you for your patience.

Customer:

You answered two out of three questions to the best of your ability. I figured the third one would be harder to answer so easily.

Customer:

I have other questions but not sure how to get them answered now, since I have to get some sleep.

Brandon M. :

You're welcome to come back tomorrow (though it will likely not be live). However, I do not want to make assumptions--which question was not answered?

Customer:

Last time I used this service it was not live. Yet this time it seems I was forced to take the answer live. This site did not give me a way to wait for my answer, and it did not give me a way to simply sign out and wait. This site still needs some improvement when it comes to giving people like me information about how it operates.

Customer:

The third question was not answered. But again that is not an easy question to answer.

Customer:

Though perhaps I should rephrase it.

Brandon M. :

That really surprises me. Did you see that huge answer I posted 5 minutes ago?

Brandon M. :

Don't get me wrong--if you feel that the question wasn't answered, you're entitled to feel that way.

Brandon M. :

I would just need some time to go back and rethink how to answer the question.

Customer:

Actually I did not see this huge answer. The only thing I saw that was large you mentioned things about yourself at the start, how presentation of need is iimportant as lawyers pick their cases by various factors. But that was not an actual answer to the question.

Customer:

Perhaps I should rephrase that question.

Customer:

I've already tried legal-aid and dayton bar association. Is there any other way of finding free or cheap lawyers, or even lawyers who may be willing to take a case on a pro bono basis?

Customer:

I've heard some lawyers, depending on how strong the case may be, take a case pro bono.

Brandon M. :

One organization is Ohio Legal Services. You can visit their website here: http://www.ohiolegalservices.org/public/legal_problem or you can telephone them at(NNN) NNN-NNNN There are several organizations. Also, there is nothing wrong with asking the legal aid services for possible referrals if you get turned down. Even if they "don't handle" a type of case, they network with tons of attorneys and likely know someone who does handle your type of matter. If you must, go outside the area--to Cincinnati for example. Any Ohio licensed attorney can practice law anywhere in Ohio.

Brandon M. :

So if Ohio Legal Services turns you down, I might recommend calling Legal Aid of Western Ohio again and just saying "look, I know that you guys turned me down, but do you know of any other organization that might be equipped to help?" These guys all go to the same conferences, so they all know each other.

Customer:

Legal-aid wouldn't even answer any questions unless one of their lawyers was taking my case.

Brandon M. :

For that matter, I would just ask Ohio Legal Services if they turn you down as well. But yes, presentation is important.

Brandon M. :

Call Ohio Legal Services. They are a different organization from Legal Aid of Western Ohio.

Customer:

You mentioned that I can try again tomorrow but the answers won't be live. How can I do that without it costing me even more? I have so many questions and so far this is the only reliable source I have for answers. Thanks to people like you.

Brandon M. :

Well, let me first ask, have my answers been helpful?

Customer:

Trying to get me to leave a positive rating, are we? lol. Just kidding.

Customer:

Yes, they have been.

Brandon M. :

Hey, man... I work for those ratings :-) Ok, I appreciate that positive feedback. Did you purchase a subscription plan?

Customer:

I don't know. The site gave me choices, but I could not see a way to confirm or cancel them.

Customer:

I think one of us just copy/pasted the entire conversation again. lol

Customer:

Last time I did this I don't think I had to select a subscription.

Brandon M. :

Ok, these are the options. The website offers an unlimited question subscription plan. They have a plan available where you pay a monthly charge and you can ask unlimited questions. I'm just the guy with the answers, so I don't know about the mechanics of the website. If you weren't offered a subscription plan or if you aren't sure if you have a subscription plan, you can contact our customer service and ask for specific instructions how to sign up for it. Again, their email isXXX@XXXXXX.XXX . However, if you have follow-up questions specifically related to the questions asked here tonight, you can just come back to this same web page and I can answer your follow-up question. It won't be live, but I can answer them when I next return to the website. There is no additional charge for clarifying questions.

Customer:

Would it be a separate question if I asked how I can get the judge's impartiality questioned and who do I go to for that? Or would that be considered a clarifying question?

Brandon M. :

I like to be as helpful as possible without getting in trouble with the website so I have discretion to stretch the boundaries to an extent, but I have to say that would be a separate question because additional information would need to be collected about some of the specifics to first determine if the time to challenge the judge's bias has already elapsed, and then to discuss what options may be available for an appeal.

Brandon M. :

If you have a lot of other questions, and it sounds like you do, a subscription may be right for you. You can always terminate the subscription when you no longer need it.

Brandon M. :

By the way, I gain absolutely nothing by selling you on the subscription plan. I just think it might be right for your situation.

Customer:

I'm unaware of timeframes when it comes to legal matters. I just hope it has not lapsed. This also brings to mind if my situation may extend that time. Or the time does not lapse until my situation is no longer the same.

Customer:

Just thoughts, nothing to reply to.

Brandon M. :

I understand.

Brandon M. :

Well, if you do need clarification on anything, you're welcome to ask tomorrow. Again, with nothing to gain personally, I do suggest looking into a subscription plan through the website. Have a good night's sleep.

Customer:

Well you have been most helpful. I'd think the site would welcome lawyers who are willing to provide extra help. It certainly makes people want to come back to this site. Alot of stores could learn from that.

Customer:

Thanks.

Brandon M., Counselor at Law
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 12235
Experience: Attorney experienced in numerous areas of law.
Brandon M. and 6 other Legal Specialists are ready to help you
Expert:  Brandon M. replied 1 year ago.
Our chat has ended, but you can still continue to ask me questions here until you are satisfied with your answer. Come back to this page to view our conversation and any other new information.

What happens now?

If you haven’t already done so, please rate your answer above. Or, you can reply to me using the box below.
Customer: replied 12 months ago.

Turns out there is no statute of limitations in regard to lodging a complaint against a judge.

Expert:  Brandon M. replied 12 months ago.

Correct, and I wouldn't suggest otherwise. To be sure that you're clear on the subject, there is a difference between motioning to remove a judge from a case and filing a grievance against the judge. A judge can be removed from a case if the judge is actually or legally presumed to be biased, but the that's different from "lodging a complaint" against a judge. Grievances for misconduct can be filed at any time, but such a filing would not remove a judge from the case. http://www.supremecourt.ohio.gov/DisciplinarySys/odc/complaint.asp

Customer: replied 12 months ago.

The case has already been decided by this judge. So do I lodge a complaint or file a grievance against the judge and try to get his decision reversed due to being biased?

I lodged a complaint and one of the things they asked was what I wanted done. I wrote two things. One that his decision be reversed, and two that he be removed from the bench. Obviously if he cannot be removed from the bench they won't do that. But I am hoping that they will be able to reverse his decision because he was biased and did not remove himself from the case.

 

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