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How should I prepare for small claims court in Oklahoma?

Customer Question
Septic repair guy is charging...
How should I prepare for small claims court in Oklahoma? Septic repair guy is charging $1800 for repairs to septic systems that I believe were unnecessary. We refuses to discuss a partial payment or justify why he did the expensive repairs. So he is taking me to small claims court.
Submitted: 7 months ago.Category: Consumer Protection Law
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Answered in 5 minutes by:
11/30/2017
Consumer Protection Lawyer: Legal Eagle, Lawyer replied 7 months ago
Legal Eagle
Legal Eagle, Lawyer
Category: Consumer Protection Law
Satisfied Customers: 13,435
Experience: Licensed to practice before state and federal court
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Hello! I am a licensed attorney, admitted to practice in state and federal court. I have a nearly 100% satisfaction rating (click here for more info) so all that means is that you can count on me to help today. Because I want to provide you with the most accurate answer possible, do you mind if I take a moment to review your question?

Please keep in mind that our conversation does not include an attorney-client relationship and this is for general information purposes only.

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Customer reply replied 7 months ago
no problem, please take a few minutes to review the question.
Consumer Protection Lawyer: Legal Eagle, Lawyer replied 7 months ago

Great, thank you! Bear with me a moment while I review…

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Consumer Protection Lawyer: Legal Eagle, Lawyer replied 7 months ago

Thanks so much for your patience. Do you have an itemized bill from the repair guy?

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Consumer Protection Lawyer: Legal Eagle, Lawyer replied 7 months ago

Have you received a 2nd opinion from other septic tank repair guys to determine whether this bill was adequate?

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Customer reply replied 7 months ago
we had 4 aerobic septic systems installed. they are less than 2 years old. one of the systems had a sprinkler head leaking/ bubbling all the time. the original installed was extremely busy due to heavy rains so we asked another septic specialist to come repair the sprinkler head. I was not available so my brother met with the repair guy. Once he arrived, he said that there were other things wrong with the system including that it was wired incorrectly and that DEQ would should off the water to the house if they knew about the bubbling sprinkler head. My brother asked him to fix the septic system and to look at the other 3 septic systems for potential problems. The next day I received a text stating "your bill is $1800 so far".
Customer reply replied 7 months ago
All of the systems were working fine. we just had the problem with one sprinkler head.
Consumer Protection Lawyer: Legal Eagle, Lawyer replied 7 months ago

Hi, I'm sorry for the delay. Bear with me one moment...

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Customer reply replied 7 months ago
the original installer is company named "The Septic Guys". Owner is ***** *****. My dispute is with Michael Goldberg, the owner of hilltop Enterprises. I spoke with David and told him that hilltop systems claimed that the septic systems were installed incorrectly and wired improperly. David was angry and ask to meet with Michael Goldberg and the DEQ inspector on-site with the septic systems. David's plan was to challenge Gulliver's claim that the systems were not working and were installed incorrectly.
Customer reply replied 7 months ago
Michael Gulliver not Michael Goldberg.
Consumer Protection Lawyer: Legal Eagle, Lawyer replied 7 months ago

Thanks so much for your patience. One last question: are you the plaintiff or are you the defendant in this action?

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Customer reply replied 7 months ago
bot***** *****ne is that the original installer (The Septic Guys) believe that most of the repairs were not necessary.
Consumer Protection Lawyer: Legal Eagle, Lawyer replied 7 months ago

Thanks for providing that.

One last question: are you the plaintiff or are you the defendant in this action?

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Customer reply replied 7 months ago
I am the dependent. However, I was planning to take him to small claims court but he filed first.
Customer reply replied 7 months ago
I am the defendant.
Consumer Protection Lawyer: Legal Eagle, Lawyer replied 7 months ago

I see what you mean. Well, if you haven't answered yet, then you can file a counterclaim for unfair trade practices because they seriously over billed you for things you didn't need and for breach of contract if you have reason to believe that the systems were installed correctly.

If it is too late to file a counter claim, you should do your best to prepare for court.

Usually, shows like Judge Judy are sadly very real. Judges are short tempered, usually older, and impatient. This means that you need to practice what you're going to say when the judge gives you an opportunity to speak.

Thus, I would recommend that you don't necessarily recite all of the facts, rather, you should simply focus on your interpretation of the most relevant facts. What you described to me would be a very good start.

You should explain that in your experience and your research, these repairs were expensive and unnecessary and that it was likely an attempt by the plaintiff to get more money out of you than he deserved. You won't be able to say what anybody told you because that is hearsay, but you can say that your research turned up that the work he did was out of the boundaries of what you agreed to and thus if he is awarded anything, it should be limited to what is reasonable for what needed to be done.

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Customer reply replied 7 months ago
Can I have the original installer to be in small claims court with me? He would be willing to say the systems were installed correctly and defend that position.
Consumer Protection Lawyer: Legal Eagle, Lawyer replied 7 months ago

Yes, you can and I would recommend that you bring them. The court may not allow him to speak; however, it will help the judge be able to come to a reasonable conclusion on whether these charges were fair. What other questions did you have for me today?

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Customer reply replied 7 months ago
should I expect the Judge to want to see itemized invoices, email correspondence, etc.
Consumer Protection Lawyer: Legal Eagle, Lawyer replied 7 months ago

Yes. The judge will probably take it into consideration and then they may review it all and make a decision a few days after trial.

Did you have any other questions for me today?

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