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What happens if I don't pay a cvil demand?

Discussion in 'Juvenile Crime, Law & Court' started by havetopay, Dec 6, 2010.

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  1. havetopay

    havetopay Law Topic Starter New Member

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    My 14 year-old daughter was caught shoplifting $34 worth of merchandise. She was banned from the store for 1 year. They called the state police who arrived and issued her a ticket to appear for juvenile probation. She had that intake and they are sending it through to family court. The other day I got a civil demand letter from an "attorney's office" that you can call until 11:00 pm at night? It states that I have to pay $170. Do I really have to pay this? What happens if I ignore it? The letter stated "this is not an attempt to collect a debt", what does that mean for me?
     
  2. jacksgal

    jacksgal Super Moderator

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    There are several consequences for not pay none good. Heres a laundry list

    .Fine will triple or more
    .You will be sued and lose then you will owe inflated fine plus legal fees and court costs
    .Negative report sent to credit reporting agencies (follow you forever)
    .filing of criminal charges if not filed at time

    To name a few. Of course it spossible nothing could happen but are you a gambler since its you not your child who will likely suffer the most
     
  3. army judge

    army judge Super Moderator

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    We all have certain enumerated rights in the United Staes.
    These rights are constitutionally protected.
    Only a judge can order you to pay a fine, after due process has occurred.
    A civil demand is nothing more than a legal fictioon created to scam your MONEY.
    If I received such a demand, I'd ignore it.
    Nothing will happen as result of ignoring such a demand, because the person issuing it has no legal authority to order YOu to do anything.
    I'm a lawyer.
    Would you rrespond to my ILLICIT demand to send me $500, because I say you owe it?
    Common sense, you have it, use it!
    This scam is nothing more than a way to bully money out of you, for something this child has YET to be adjudicated of doing!
     
  4. jacksgal

    jacksgal Super Moderator

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    AJ and I have had this discussion before. Civil Demand is state law. Whether you call it extorcion or whatever its legal as are the consequences. Yes you can ignore the letter and they can triple fine. They can do many things or nothing at all. If your a gambler I say ignore it if not then weigh the fine vs the consequencesits your call. If the letter cam from a firm called Palmer and Reifler I suggest paying it as they seem to be the most agressive at seeking these funds.
     
  5. CdwJava

    CdwJava Moderator

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    The civil demand has the support of state law in many states (mine being one of them). Yes, the defendant can choose to ignore it in the hopes that the store will not pursue the matter to a civil court, but that is the gamble that anyone takes when ignoring a claim for damages. The thing is, with these shoplifting cases, they usually have a signed admission of guilt and other proof to bolster their case. In other words, if you go to court you will almost certainly lose.

    The question you have to ask if you receive one of these is whether or not you have the time and inclination to fight the matter in court? And, if you lose, are you ready to pay the court costs if they can be applied? Further, do you wish to risk the claim going into collections?

    Yes, you can choose to ignore it. But, is that a gamble you wish to take?
     
  6. jacksgal

    jacksgal Super Moderator

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    NEW YORK CIVIL SHOPLIFTING LAW

    New York General Obligation Law section 11-105 reads in pertinent part:

    5. An adult or emancipated minor who commits larceny against the property of a mercantile establishment shall be

    civilly liable to the operator of such establishment in an amount consisting of:

    a. the retail price of the merchandise if not recovered in merchantable condition up to an amount not to

    exceed fifteen hundred dollars, plus

    b. a penalty not to exceed the greater of five times the retail value of merchandise or seventy-five dollars,

    provided, however, that in no event shall such penalty exceed five hundred dollars.

    6. Parents or legal guardians of an unemancipated minor shall be civilly liable for said minor who commits larceny

    against the property of a mercantile establishment to the operator of such establishment in an amount consisting of:

    a. the retail price of the merchandise if not recovered in merchantable condition up to an amount not to

    exceed fifteen-hundred dollars, plus:

    b. A penalty not to exceed the greater of five times the retail price of the merchandise or seventy-five dollars,

    provided however, that in no event shall such penalty exceed five hundred dollars.

    7. A conviction or a plea of guilty for committing larceny is not a prerequisite to the bringing of a civil suit, obtaining

    judgment, or collecting the judgment under this section.

    8. The fact that an operator of a mercantile establishment may bring an action against an individual as provided in

    this section shall not limit the right of such merchant to demand, orally or in writing, that person who is liable for

    damages and penalties under this section remit the damages and penalties prior to the commencement of any legal

    action.

    9. In any action brought under subdivision six of this section, the court shall consider in the interest of justice

    mitigating circumstances that bear directly upon the actions of the parent or legal guardian in supervising the

    unemancipated minor who committed the larceny.

    10. An action for recovery of damages and penalties under this section may be brought in any court of competent

    jurisdiction.

    11. The provisions of this section shall not be construed to prohibit or limit any other cause of action which an

    operator of a mercantile establishment may have against a person who unlawfully takes merchandise from the

    mercantile establishment.

    12. Any testimony or statement of the defendant or unemancipated minor child of the defendant or any evidence

    derived from an attempt to reach a civil settlement or from a civil proceeding brought under this section shall be

    inadmissible in any other court proceeding relating to such larceny.

    New York Civil Recovery Law (N.Y. 11-105)

    Worksheet


    If the retail value of the recovered merchandise

    is less than

    or equal to $15: Demand amt = $75


    If the retail value of the recovered merchandise is between $15.01 and $100:
    Demand amt = Retail amt $__________ X 5 = $_________

    If the retail value of the recovered merchandise is greater than $100:
    Demand amount = $500
     
  7. mightymoose

    mightymoose Moderator

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    The demand letter means nothing.
    It means no more than if I sent you a demand letter for the same amount of money for whatever reason I wanted to list.
    Only a judge has authority to order you to pay, and until then you do not have to do anything. The law referenced above gives the merchant the authority to ask for the money, and that is all it is- a request.
    You can either pay the demanded amount or take the chance that a judge could order you to pay more.
    This is small potatoes... personally, I would not pay it. They recovered their merchandise and your child will be on probation. The matter has been addressed and they won't go out of business if they aren't able to dig into your pockets for a measly $170.
     
  8. CdwJava

    CdwJava Moderator

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    I guess I'm just not a gambler. If it were one of my kids I'd pay it ... well, rather, I'd have JUNIOR pay it. His actions, his responsibility.

    And it's a tad more than simply a note from one private person to another, it's one that has the force of statutory law behind it and it is an easy win for the merchant (should they pursue it). Plus, if the matter is not resolved, there is the possibility that the merchant might just send the whole thing to the police and the DA. Now, granted, I cannot recall personally EVER taking a late report of shoplifting like this, but I have heard it done. If you ask me, it is NOT worth the risk to ignore.

    But, as I said, I'm not a gambler.
     
  9. jacksgal

    jacksgal Super Moderator

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    Moose lots of stores have recently gone under Mervyns for one. Retailers lose over 15 billion (with a B) to shoplifting alone. That isnt even the biggest bulk of lose either. The cost to protect store assets is high as well. Its state law ignoring it can prove costly if the law firm chooses to pursue it. Which honeslty is in their best interest since they only get paid if they recover the funds. I alsolook at the lesson it teaches the child in this case as well. Yes you can ignore it and you have a chance they wont pursue it further. Fighting it can get costly and you dont have much chance of winning. I have seen these fights before and talked with these law firms. The law in on their side!
     
    Last edited: Dec 6, 2010
  10. nautica1216

    nautica1216 New Member

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    if i won the lotto in nyc at age 24 which was 5 yrs ago now but didnt know how to go foward with the case because i mailed the ticket in the mail in good faith that they would contact me but i am now trying to pursue bieng i am now able to and have all the information that i need to pursue but was told that tier are statues of limitations on when you can file a case but if i was young and didnt have the right resourse to go foward at the time due to my complete situation am i able to start my claim in supreme court and delay ,toill,the staue of limitation or use discovery rule
     
  11. mightymoose

    mightymoose Moderator

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    You should start your own topic. You are posting under an old topic that has nothing to do with your question.

    However, in short, you are out of luck. You apparantly did not follow instructions for claiming the prize, and you are way too late to claim it now.
     
  12. fredrikklaw

    fredrikklaw Moderator

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    Oh, please!

    HAVETOPAY:

    I am with MIGHTYMOOSE on this one. A civil demand means F.A.; nothing at all and the worst thing to do is paying such a demand any attention.

    It is emotional blackmail of the unsuspecting! Simple as that.

    fredrikklaw
     
  13. shrinkmaster

    shrinkmaster Well-Known Member

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    nautica's post has nothng to do with civil demand
     
  14. Unregistered

    Unregistered Guest

    I was wondering the same, a law firm named palmer reifler and assoc. in florida are infamouse for sending cival setlement demand letters. I too was told that a judge has to issue a sentence and order you to pay civaly, not a collection agency/or lawyers from the collection firm. research this company-they have nothing good said about them at all-sounds like a skam to me.
     

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