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Law Educator, Esq.
Law Educator, Esq., Attorney
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 92477
Experience:  JA Mentor -Attorney Labor/employment, corporate, sports law, admiralty/maritime and civil rights law
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Malpractice, court proceeding tampering,

Resolved Question:

Malpractice, court proceeding tampering, Allegheny county family courts: Two of my lawyers, and my wife's lawyer, and the court of record have participated in collusion. Not necessarily altogether. However, I've spotted a tampering with a PFA proceeding and the malfeasance on the lawyers behalf. What is the remedy?


 


Also, need to know if signing the illegally derived PFA extension of continuance and following consent decree will hinder a remedy?

Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Legal
Expert:  Law Educator, Esq. replied 1 year ago.
Thank you for your question. I look forward to working with you to provide you the information you are seeking.

If there was any fraud involved or if the PFA was illegally obtained, your remedy is filing a motion to vacate the PFA and you need to describe your evidence of this fraud or illegal conduct.

A writ of mandamus is what you are referring to and that is an order to the court to take action they are legally mandated to perform, but you would not do that until you seek to vacate the PFA first through the court and exhaust your appeals. If you are outside of the time to appeal the PFA (30 days) then you can file your writ of mandamus with the supreme court detailing the fraud and illegal conduct and asking them to issue the writ to vacate the PFA and hold proper hearings on the PFA.

Also, if your attorney has committed malpractice, you have the remedy to sue him for the costs his malpractice caused you. In PA you have only 2 years from the date of the negligent act to sue for legal malpractice. To prove a case of legal malpractice, you will require a legal expert to review the evidence and testify as to what the malpractice was.



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Customer: replied 1 year ago.

The current offer is a continuance of a temporary pfa and a consent decree following which states the same...


 


my lawyer states that he isn't even going to be available for the hearing tomorrow, believing that I would just sign off, although an associate would be available...


 


The full PFA has not been issued yet. That could conceivable happen tomorrow if I enter into a hearing.


 


The deal is rotten from top to bottom. Please provide a fuller remedy of the situation? Also, please let me know what options I would lose should I sign the bad deal...

Expert:  Law Educator, Esq. replied 1 year ago.
Thank you for your response.

Understand, I know nothing of your situation or the facts to even try to provide a "fuller" remedy of the situation. Please remember, I only know just what you have told me about the situation and nothing more.

If you have not signed the deal and you are not satisfied with it because you believe it is not necessary, then your option at this point is to show up in court with your evidence and witnesses and go to a hearing and present the witnesses and evidence to the court as to why the PFA should not be granted.

If this is a domestic violence PFA, it could cause you to lose any gun rights and the ability to possess, own, purchase firearms and that is one of the effects of a PFA. Thus, once you agree to it you would lose your firearm rights.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Thanks. Perhaps, I wasn't clear enough in my follow up question.


 


I'm concerned about losing legal remedies as discussed in my original question which was about malpractice, collusion, and court system tampering. Appealing to higher authorities like the supreme court or opening investigations, or even suit for malpractice. I wanted to know if I would lose any of these things by signing a continuance of temporary PFA?


 


And what my "remedies" would be after signing the continuance of the temporary PFA?


 


(I'm not concerned about losing my 2nd amendment rights)

Expert:  Law Educator, Esq. replied 1 year ago.
Thank you for the clarification.

If you sign agreeing to the PFA, then you lose your rights to appeal it because they consider it a voluntary settlement. The courts hold that if you signed a settlement agreeing to this knowing everything you mentioned above, then you did in fact agree and thus you cannot appeal to vacate it on those grounds later. Thus, if you know all of these things have happened as you are alleging above, now is the time to raise the issues or you would lose your right to fight over them later. If you go to trial or a hearing on it and lose, then you have appeal rights and the right to pursue your complaints you mentioned above as well.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

In direct response to your last response, "if I Know" the aforementioned and sign then I lose rights to appeal and can't raise those issues later.


 


The point of the other redresses I mentioned including an investigation, etc. to find out the facts of what has occurred or is occurring.


 


So, it's a weird question of whether or not I "know" the aforementioned.


 


To stop mincing words: how do I raise these issues prior to signing anything and to whom do I raise these things?? I found that the governing bodies are all requiring claims and forms and time to look into it...


 


So to be clear - to whom do I raise these issues? (My current counsel is not going to want to hear that I'm questioning their work on my behalf)

Expert:  Law Educator, Esq. replied 1 year ago.
Thank you for your response.

If these allegations are being made by you about improper conduct, I would hope you have at least some evidence of them and are not just making them based on a hunch you have. If you do have some evidence, then now is the time to raise them in the court and you can inform the court that you have filed complaints about this conduct with the proper agencies, which is putting your complaints about this behavior on the record.

As far as your current counsel, if you want to preserve your rights, then insist they go through with the hearing and present your evidence at the hearing, especially if your evidence shows you are not a danger to your spouse and as such no PFA is necessary.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

This is why I'm requesting an investigation. No one is going to be forthcoming with me about impropriety. Why would they. There isn't anything else I have but observing with my own eyes and ears. So how else would I have evidence?


 


I can only file claims and ask for investigations. The PFA hearing is tomorrow at 11am, and so it's not possible to say I filed claims unless simply putting the claims I filled out in the mail is to say I filed claims concerning these events.


 


While there haven't been any major incidents with my wife, and there is evidence to the contrary of her fear of me, considering we had 2 visits with her and my children together as a family prior to her filing the PFA, I do believe counsel is correct when they say that a few minor things without police reports would probably grant her at some time period of a PFA...


 


So to be clear:


1. How else would I have evidence aside from my own witnessing?


2. How can I say I've filed claims with so little time to do so - all agencies saying fill out a claim form and mail it in?


3. As my lawyer said he won't even be available for the hearing, but maybe an associate, and since he even after I inquired did not tell me what witnesses or even ask for what witnesses to subpoena, then wouldn't this be an obvious continuance issue? (plus a change in counsel where he didn't even receive my file yet?)


 

Expert:  Law Educator, Esq. replied 1 year ago.
Based on everything you are saying, I would suggest that if you truly believe something illegal is going on with this PFA, do not agree to it and go to a hearing before the judge and present your witnesses as to why the PFA is not required (you have to at least have witnesses to attest to the conduct being claimed against you on the PFA or you are going to lose that case regardless of your claims about improper conduct by everyone).

If you do not have evidence as to why the PFA is not valid or proper (not talking about evidence of the conduct of the attorneys or judge) then it is unlikely even your complaints about the attorneys and judge will have any effect in your case. In this case, I am afraid you would do best to sign and then the reason you would still be able to complain later would be "after acquired evidence" meaning you discovered this improper conduct after you signed the PFA agreement.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

I think the question turns to how to get a continuance from tomorrow's hearing???


 


Can you give me the criteria that may apply in order to get a continuance granted??


 


(you already know, switch in counsel, no direction on witnesses, I have some witnesses not able to show; out of town; business etc. Plus in my case Police would need subpoena'd).


 


So how do I get a continuance?

Expert:  Law Educator, Esq. replied 1 year ago.
Thank you for your response and new question.

You have to file a motion for continuance with the court, which can be oral. The court has discretion to grant a continuance for good cause. Good cause would be that your actual attorney is not available and someone who is not familiar with your case is filling in. Also, the fact your witnesses are out of town on business would be good cause for a continuance. All of these issues you raise are good cause for a continuance to hold the hearing because you are not ready for the hearing at this point and that is what the court will consider.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

As previously stated if I sign off to a PFA I could lose my right to other redresses, correct?


 


To get clarification; what I'm signing off to is a continuance of the temporary pfa, which would be dismissed after 90 days and then a consent agreement which basically says the same thing as the continuance / temporary...


 


So,


 


1. Do I lose my right to other redresses simply signing off on a continuance?


 


2. What does a consent agreement mean legally in terms of binding? It's a contract? Not a contract?


 


3. I understand that the consent agreement can only be enforced civilly which means by suit, but is that it?


 


4. The consent agreement states agreement of both parties to modify or by "Order of Court"... So aside from filing for custody which would be a new order of court, is there any other filings which could modify it?


 


5. And lastly, how can be expected to allow my wife who I still love and cherish as I'm called to do, simply just get away with her part in this given that she has sexually assaulted me, mentally abused me, quasi abused the children, and as a high school teacher had her students give her back rubs in class???


 


I'll admit number 5 is optional, since it's more of a moral question. Although, it's probably the most important question.


 


Thanks!

Expert:  Law Educator, Esq. replied 1 year ago.
Thank you for the follow up.

You could lose your right to challenge it if they prove you knew that these violations existed, but now you are saying you have no evidence of any illegal conduct in this matter it is more your feeling from your observations. If you later uncover actual evidence of improper conduct then you can raise that issue.

1) You do not lose any rights by agreeing to a continuance.

2) A consent decree is treated like any binding contract, it is a settlement agreement between the parties.

3) Yes, the consent agreement can be enforced through the court as they would any other contract.

4) Yes, a motion to modify the consent agreement, which would need to be based on some significant change in circumstances, or a joint stipulation to modify the consent agreement can modify the agreement.

5) You and many others ask this question, but when a woman is scorned or upset over something they react and many times they do not think. They are just looking for revenge and to punish you most times and other times they get sleazy attorneys who are low lives who tell their clients to do these things because they believe it makes their divorce case better.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Sorry but a few more questions:



1. Does signing to a continuance of a temporary PFA AND a consent agreement (in order to get opposing council to agree to the continuance) bar a revisiting of the consent agreement following the 90 day expiration of the continuance? or would that have to be done like suggested in your previous response. (I do not care for this upfront consent agreement at all)


 


2. Can I move to vacate a signed continuance? Or make another similar motion? I'm assuming I'm stuck with the 90 days on this one, but I thought I'd ask.


 


3. Can I move to modify the consent agreement before it takes affect?


 


4. Assuming I sign both documents; my next decision is to sue my wife and our previous marriage counselor. My wife mainly for intentional infliction of emotional harm, the marriage counselor as the witness. (this is called tough love). So am I hindered in a civil suit process by signing?


 


5. The civil suit against her is relatively easy, given the testimony of the marriage counselor. How many times can my wife berate her husband about an abortion his previous girlfriend had without his consent in a counseling session - I believe she hit about 22. But there's more of course. The marriage counselor - told me "unless this is all a big set up and a giant waste of time"


 


6. Problem is, while I know it's a deprivation of rights problem I've been facing under duress, as would be this signing, she's the most direct line along with the marriage counselor to resolve this, and she does need to understand that her actions are wrong. Especially if she's going to go ahead and get the majority of custody...


 


7. Once again, it's my belief that the proceeding is not legitimate. BTW, can you tell me what the name and address is of where PFA's are held in Allegheny County?


 

Expert:  Law Educator, Esq. replied 1 year ago.
1) NO do not sign the consent agreement at all if you disagree, merely ask for a continuance and let the temporary PFA remain until the new hearing date.

2) Once you ask for a continuance and it is granted you are stuck with it, you cannot move to vacate it.

3) You need to modify or negotiate the modification of the consent agreement BEFORE you sign it. Once you sign it then it becomes almost impossible to modify unless the other party agrees to modify.

4) If you sign consenting to the PFA, it would be used to claim you signed because you were guilty as indicated in the agreements. However, you can prove that you signed to allow the matter to move forward and you could try to sue the ex and the counselor if they willfully participated in obtaining the PFA by fraud.

5) If you have the evidence of infliction of emotional distress as you state and the support of the counselor, then you can sue.

6) I would advise against signing anything you are not in agreement with, regardless of the stress this is causing because the court is not likely to buy the "duress" argument later to void your consent. Act now on this and if you do not agree do not sign go to a hearing as is your right.

7) Typically they are held in the clerk of court's office at:

City-County Building
414 Grant Street Dot First Floor
Pittsburgh, PANNN-NN-NNNN
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

1. I'm not sure you're right on the last point 7. It is an interesting question because the internet tells me something similar, but that's not what my paperwork reads..


 


2. But back to the question number 4. What I'm being asked to sign is a continuance of a temporary PFA, and then I'm told there will be no findings once that has run out after 90 days. If this is true, I can agree to signing the continuance. Is this true to your knowledge?


 


3. I also, agree about not signing anything I don't agree with, so I want to make sure... I don't think I can sign the consent agreement as is. Unless it's modified before proceedings. We did not have a conciliatory hearing at the 1st continuance presumably because the judge called off sick, so I'm still entitled to that process am I not?


 


4. Also, at 10pm it's getting late. I left it with my current lawyer that I would probably sign and scan and email him the documents. I need a solid answer on if there would be no findings after a continuance of temporary pfa question, then I can sign that, but let him know that I don't want to agree to the rest... So if there would be a better resolution it would be through a conciliatory hearing, otherwise, I can't imagine any more negotiations would take place in the morning, and then it would be another continuance - so any idea how long another continuance may last??

Expert:  Law Educator, Esq. replied 1 year ago.
1) Thank you for your response, it is the clerk of court who handles these, but each judge can have their own repository as well. However, in every court case, every order is also filed in the clerk of court's office which is the address I provided you.

2) Yes, if you sign the continuance of the temporary order and NOT the consent agreement, the order is still just temporary until you have time for a hearing when it is reset. This would also give you chance to prepare your case.

3) I would not sign the consent agreement if you do not concur with its contents. You can agree to continuing the temporary order until you get a new hearing date, that does not harm anything for now it just means the temporary PFA would continue to be in force until you go to an actual hearing which is what you want to present your evidence.

4) Yes, I have been spending plenty of time with you all day long on this and it is late. If you sign the continuance, the temporary PFA stays as written and the continuance would last until the court has another available court date, which depends on each judge's calendar, but typically it can be anywhere from 30-90 days or so, there is no way to predict that.
Law Educator, Esq., Attorney
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 92477
Experience: JA Mentor -Attorney Labor/employment, corporate, sports law, admiralty/maritime and civil rights law
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