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Law Educator, Esq.
Law Educator, Esq., Attorney
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 111450
Experience:  JA Mentor -Attorney Labor/employment, corporate, sports law, admiralty/maritime and civil rights law
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This is a question attorney having knowledge of Florida

Customer Question

This is a question for an attorney having knowledge of Florida law....I am going to small claims court tomorrow (Tues) at 9am re: a promissory note I signed Dec 31, 2014 to pay my uncle $5k for items I removed from a condo owned by my father that my uncle lived in and moved out of. My uncle had moved out of the condo 1 1/2 years when I removed items from the condo and took them to my uncle's current home, he accepted delivery of the items, then a few days later my uncle claims I threw away additional items of value. I removed my uncle's items from the condo at that time (Dec 2011) because a guy friend of mine was going to move into my dad's condo. My dad was out of the country when this occurred.
I dispute that I threw away items of value belonging to my uncle and after being hounded for 2 years after the event by my aunt and grandfather (sister to my uncle and father to my uncle), I signed the promissory note under duress. I did not make payments to the note when it became due in June 2015 as an attorney friend told me not to and just let the uncle take me to small claims court. Well now the uncle has done so.
I want to file a counter-suit today in Broward County Ft. Lauderdale court stating that the promissory note is not valid because: 1. It is not dated by me or my uncle, the only date is by the notary who signed it. 2. It does not include my address or my uncle's address. 3. It does not include any interest or penalty for non-payment. 4. I signed the promissory note under duress. 5. I do not believe my uncle has the ORIGINAL, he stated in a text message to me yesterday that his attorney has the original, but I read online that if he is unable to produce the original document, that it becomes invalid.
Please instruct me how to file a counter-suit today. I do not know how to file this - is it a small claims case or WHAT? Clearly, I did not destroy anything of value that belonged to my uncle and he just wants to scam $5k out of me. I did discover a marijuana growing station in the condo, and my uncle has not worked for the past 20 years, as he claims he has back pain but no Doctor will affirm this. My uncle is currently 45. I am 22 and was 21 when I signed the note on 12/31/14. Thank you. Tyler
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 for educational purposes only.
What you are saying above is not a countersuit, that is a defense to the suit filed against you. You do not have a countersuit, you have defenses to the invalidity of the note.
When you go to court, these are your DEFENSES, not countersuit issues:
1. It is not dated by me or my uncle, the only date is by the notary who signed it.
2. It does not include my address or my uncle's address.
3. It does not include any interest or penalty for non-payment.
4. I signed the promissory note under duress.
5. I do not believe my uncle has the ORIGINAL, he stated in a text message to me yesterday that his attorney has the original, but I read online that if he is unable to produce the original document, that it becomes invalid.
If court is tomorrow, it is too late to file a written answer today and it is not required for small claims anyhow. You need to appear and bring your proof of each of the claims you are making above for your defense. Make sure you have your witnesses with you as well to testify to any of the above issues to invalidate the note you signed.
A countersuit is if your uncle had done something to owe you money, such as he breached a contract with you and owes you money, that is not what you are saying above, you are just saying you have reasons for not paying and legal grounds for not paying.

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