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Richard, Attorney
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 55711
Experience:  Attorney with 29 years of experience.
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Thank you in advance for your much needed advise. I am being

This answer was rated:

Thank you in advance for your much needed advise.

I am being taken to small claims court next Wednesday, May 8th.

This is what happened. I am finishing a book and am planning to do speaking engagements and seminars. I have been looking for someone who would help set me up for success. I was referred to a woman who purportedly has a great deal of experience in doing just that. She claimed to have played an integral part of creating the success of Tony Robbins, Mark Victor Hansen and others who she quotes on her web site and based on that success she was charging $10,000 for a one day consultation. She promised that by the end of the day she would leave us with an exclusive manual that she wrote for executives that she had trained, a custom “blueprint” of strategies and structures that would set up my whole business, avoiding mistakes and making the best decisions, and her proprietary “Golden Rolodex” of professional people who would provide specific marketing services at a reasonable cost and who she has personally worked with and could vouch for. Her "Golden Rolodex" would save me tremendous money and time to go right to the best people at the lowest cost and was alone worth thousands of dollars.

Long story short, my brother, wife and I had the $10,000 day. It was a complete waist of time. She forgot the manual, created no blueprint, left us with six pages of elementary work sheets with useless information, and a “Golden Rolodex” consisting of four pieces of paper stapled together with references that everyone is familiar with, for example: Go Daddy. Several contacts were repeated, including her own name and information under different general categories. There were no personal individuals who she had worked with and who we could hire to do the specific marketing that we would need.

Where I went wrong is before she left she asked how we would rate the day and after paying $5,000 in advance for some reason I gave her an 8 out of 10 and signed a contract to continue. When she left and we debriefed and looked at the materials we were all horrified at what had happened. We were bamboozled.

So, I called her and told her of our disappointment, that we did not want to continue, that we wished to void the contract and the second check for $5,000 would be cancelled. When we spoke, I was very respectful and told her that we were not expecting her to return the $5,000 I already paid, but I could not in good conscience give her an additional $5000. She was appalled and very angry. When I attempted to clarify the difference between what she had promised and what she had delivered, I felt as though I was speaking to a psychotic person who had no ability to "test reality." The truth is, $100 would have been too much for what we gained.

How should I prepare for court? Does it make sense for me to counter sue for the original $5000? I plan to bring my wife, brother and the minimal paperwork she brought to the meeting.

Thank you Very Much again for your support and advise.
Welcome! My goal is to do my very best to understand your situation and to provide a full and complete answer for you.

Good afternoon. I would raise the stakes on her. I not only would file a counter suit for breach of contract asking for your $5,000 to be returned, I would also file deceptive trade practice and fraud actions for her fraudulent and deceptive misrepresentations about her experience and abilities as well as what she was promising to do. These claims will entitle you not only to your damages, but also an additional amount equal to multiple times your actual damages as punitive damages. In addition, filing these counterclaims against her is likely to cause her to drop her suit and settle to avoid any risk of losing either the deceptive trade practice and fraud claims.

Thank you so much for allowing me to help you with your questions. I have done my best to provide information which will be helpful to you. If I have not fully addressed your questions or if you have any follow up questions, or if I have misinterpreted your questions in any way, please do not rate me yet, but simply ask a follow up question without rating so I can provide you with a fully satisfactory answer. If I have fully answered your question(s) to your satisfaction, I would appreciate you rating my service with 3, 4, or 5 faces/stars so I can receive credit for helping you today. I thank you in advance for taking the time to provide me a positive rating!
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Thank you for your excellent guidance. Do I have time to file, given that her suit comes up Wednesday? If so, how do I go about that?

You're very's my pleasure to help. Each court has its own guidelines, so what you want to do first thing tomorrow is contact the court clerk of the court in which you are scheduled to appear. Also, the court clerk will have the appropriate forms upon which to file your counter suit.
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Ok. Just to be clear, I might have time to file? If so, will the judge handle both suits at the same time?

Based on my experience, it is likely that the court will allow you to file your countersuit because they'll want to deal with the entire case...your side and her one time.
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

If I file tomorrow, they will mail it to her. She might not get it until Wednesday. Might they reschedule the date once I file?

You can ask the court for an extension to file a counter suit.
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Excellent! Do I simply tell them that I wish to file the countersuit for the $5k plus deceptive trade practice and fraud actions for her fraudulent and deceptive misrepresentations?

You will want your causes of action to be breach of contract, fraud, and deceptive trade practice
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Thank you so much!!!

You're's been my pleasure. I'll keep you in my prayers for your hearing! :)
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Thank you so much for the positive rating! I appreciate having had the opportunity to serve you! If I can be of assistance to you in the future, just look me up and I will be happy to help!
Thank you also for the generous bonus! I appreciate your kindness!