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  1. Fair enough. I didn't realize I could list multiple defendants. I appreciate the advice.
  2. Negative. We paid a deposit of $500 and the guy disappeared. Looking at his BBB profile it seems there are a LOT of people who had the same issue with him. So, I am suing for my deposit. No work was ever done, nothing was ever delivered. You are correct, for some states. However, in the State of Florida, anyone operating under a name aside from their given name must register the name. That includes DBA's. It's a moot point either way since he does have an active corporation, it's just not the same company name as the one he listed on my invoice. I blame Alanis Morissette. Only trying to sue the individual responsible. Let's not put too much emphasis on the word "company", I only use that reference because it's represented as an Inc. He's a one man show, "company" or not. Which goes back to my original question: If we paid our deposit to XYZ Company, Inc, and that company doesn't exist in Florida, should I sue him by his given name instead?
  3. I am referring to corporate/LLC names, yes. The contractor is an individual, he's the only one in his "company". We have an invoice that details the work to be done, delivery time, price, etc. The invoice is in a company name (Inc), but that name is not registered with Florida is a corporation. The invoice only references the one company name. No, I've checked to see if he has a DBA and he does not. I've ran numerous searches and found when I searched by registered agent he has several corporate entities, all but one of which are inactive at this time. Ironically, the company name used on the invoice isn't one of those names. The one active corporation he has is a C-Corp. I said contractor earlier because I didn't know the best way to describe the profession, but he does window treatments, like blinds and shutters. That particular trade doesn't have a state level license requirement like a contractor, I've checked.
  4. I am preparing to file a small claims suit against a home contractor. The problem is the contractor has numerous company name registrations, most of which are inactive. Complicating the matter further is that the company name used on his invoice, and the name we made the check payable to, doesn't even exist (in terms of a state level filing). So, how should I declare the defendant on my complaint? By the (non-existent) company name that was on our invoice and check payment? By the company name that actually is an active name registration (but not the same as what is on our documents)? Or by his full name (no company name)?
  5. I am an employer in Florida and our business is very seasonal. We have our core staff that is employed year-round, but we're looking at the possibility of hiring seasonal employees next year. I'm trying to determine the feasibility of hiring seasonal employees and my primary concern is whether or not they would be eligible for unemployment after the season ends. Considering they know they are being hired for a specific season they aren't really being fired. I've done my best to navigate the Florida DOR website but there doesn't appear to be much information on the topic. Does anyone know if a seasonal employee would be eligible for unemployment benefits when the season ends?
  6. I feel there must be some type of a solution to this. I can't be the only business that struggles with policy enforcement at the hands of the credit card companies.
  7. A valid point. It's a product of the time we live in right now, nobody is accountable for themselves or their actions. The chargebacks we see are mostly from people who don't want to pay a cancellation fee, which is disclosed to them in any number of ways. We even have e-sign docs in which they agree to our cancellation policy, plus click to accept as an additional safety net, yet Visa/MC live by their own rules (which often times are different than the written rules we follow). But, as a small business, we must have certain policies in place to remain profitable. A cancellation policy is one of those. Frankly, I think we do an exceptional job of telling our customers about our policies, going above and beyond what most companies will do. We don't surprise people, they know what the policies are, they just don't want to abide by them. It's pretty unfortunate that we can't enforce these policies because, in today's world, we have to take credit cards. But, you may be right, to pursue those who file a chargeback via a collection agency. For us it's hardly about the cancellation fee itself, but more about the principal of the matter.
  8. Is there a type of lawyer that specializes in dealing with credit card companies, as they pertain to consumer chargebacks and disputes? I feel as though my company follows the rules set by Visa and Mastercard to the letter, yet we often lose chargebacks. It doesn't matter how much evidence we provide they just always seem to side with the consumer. We go to great lengths to do everything that is asked of use via the credit card company regulations yet nothing seems to help. We've even made attempts to contact people at Visa/MC to get answers, possibly get guidance on what they want from us, but we never get anywhere. It's really annoying. So, I wonder if their is a type of lawyer that understands how to deal with credit card companies, from a business perspective. I reviewed the long list of "legal issues" but nothing jumped out at me. I guess I'm looking for guidance as to how to modify our Terms & Conditions or the way our customers agree to them to allow us a better chance at winning these disputes.
  9. Last year I was pulled over for excessively speeding in the Arizona desert. Much to my surprise, Arizona has very strict traffic laws and I was charged with a misdemeanor for "Excessive Speed" A.R.S. $28-701.02(A)(3). Ultimately I reached a plea agreement with the DA and plead guilty. Perhaps it was naive of me, but I assumed that the charge was criminal and wouldn't affect my driving record. I live in Florida and I am not aware of any 'criminal' traffic tickets, it seems odd to me that I would be penalized by both a criminal misdemeanor and a traffic ticket which is now on my driving record. My question: Are there any steps I can take to request for the speeding violation to be removed from my driving record?
  10. I'm researching a court case between PODS Enterprises and U-Haul International for a law project. I'm having trouble answering a question (below) and was hoping to get some feedback from someone with expertise. Summary In September 2014 a jury trial convened and awarded PODS (Portable on Demand Storage) with a $60 million judgement for trademark infringement by U-Haul. The entire case stems from U-Haul's use of the words "pods" and "pod". "pods" is trademarked, and U-Haul's use of the word is pretty clear cut infringement. But PODS also argued, in their initial complaint, that U-Haul shouldn't be able to use "pod" either, which is a pretty general word that is not trademarked. The docket information can be found here. The original complaint filed by PODS is here. Question I've been having trouble determining if the basis for the award is solely for the infringed trademark "pods", or if the ruling essentially declared that the word "pod" is also off limits. It seems to me that, since "pod" is not trademarked, the verdict and award must have been based on "pods", and not "pod". So, legally speaking, what was the outcome as it pertains to "pod"?
  11. Good Morning, Over the past 10 years my company has spent 500+ hours developing, modifying and improving a service industry work order. Unlike most of the templates found online, our work order is an editable PDF form that addresses common legal issues in our industry. Simply put, the work order is both aesthetically and legally sound. We're interested in creating an additional revenue stream by licensing the work order to other companies in the industry. There are many different types of license agreements out there and I've been unable to determine what type of agreement we should be using. Can anyone point me in the right direction for this?
  12. Good Evening, I'm in the process of filing my lawsuit for this deposit and I'm a bit stumped as to how to answer the question, "What law supports my case?" I've always felt that contracts had some kind of universal enforceability, so long as the contract meets the proper elements of a contract and doesn't promise to commit a crime or do something illegal. So, assuming my contract is straight forward and the terms were clearly spelled out yet the seller violated those terms, what level of government (or law) oversees/defines that the seller has breached the contract? I believe the UCC applies only to commercial transactions, so I'm a bit confused.
  13. I understand that they are not included, but can I add them into the amount I am seeking? If I anticipate $500 in travel expenses can I seek an amount of $3500 as opposed to the actual deposit amount of $3000?
  14. Good Morning, A few months back I entered into a contact to purchase a fully restored classic car from a private seller in Arizona, I am in Florida. I made sure I had a lengthy and detailed sales agreement drafted which helped me balance out the immense down side of being so far from the vehicle. Most notably, there were several conditions of the sale which discussed the vehicle condition being as advertised as well as the sale being subject to a thorough inspection. With the contract in place I gave the seller a $3000.00 security deposit. As it turns out, the vehicle wasn't quite as advertised. I hired a master mechanic that specialized in classic cars to complete the inspection a few days prior to the sale. His report detailed an amateur restoration job that wasn't even complete, a long way from what I was expecting. I attempted to renegotiate with the seller but he refused so I pulled out of the sale. Despite my repeated attempts to contact the seller, even sending certified mail, I have been unable to get a response and have decided to file suit in Arizona. My question here pertains to the damages I am seeking. While I most certainly want to recover my deposit, I may also have to travel back to Arizona to present my case. Can I include those costs in the amount I am seeking? Obviously I do not know what those costs are so should I estimate? The court summons I am completing has a line underneath the amount I am seeking which talks about recouping court costs, but I'm sure that is limited to lawyer fees and court fees, not travel.
  15. Thank you for the responses. It appears I'm a bit out of my league! I'll speak with a lawyer tomorrow and take the appropriate steps. Thanks again.
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