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Everything posted by Joey81

  1. I'm not asking anyone to do research, but I was hoping that someone who deals with valuation issues regularly might suggest some case law that they reference regularly. I thought that in considering equitability that case law could be pulled from outside VT as long as it is dealing with general rule of law and not contradicting local law. The factors determining division of property are rather vague.
  2. The question is what case law can be cited to help in appeal on these issues. 1. Court assessed value is greater than replacement value (for a wholesale purchaser) 2. Court did not consider debt on the inventory 3. I was paying child support already, so purchasing something with remaining income should have no bearing on division of assets. 4. How to determine value of home-made artistic works. Thanks.
  3. I'm looking for case law or guidelines to help me with an appeal of my divorce ruling. I am a luthier, and my living has entailed repair/maintenance of instruments. I've never sold any of my hand made instruments, but in the 5 years of my marriage I devoted some time to private study with a world renowned instrument maker, and expanded my portfolio of works for sale as I prepared to move towards self employment. I also acquired some works for sale, which is marked up at 100%. My separation/divorce started shortly after I quit my job and began working part time for myself while also pursuing other employment opportunities. In the final divorce ruling the court valued all my instruments at 80% of retail, which is far above my replacement/purchase cost (50% of retail). I am appealing the order pro-se since I'm out of money, and I'd appreciate suggestions for arguments or case law on these issues. 1. The value of my self-made instruments is 95% labor, very little materials, and have never sold one that I've made. Some are 5 years old by the time of divorce. I testified in court that the private study and making of these instruments was primarily about expanding a portfolio for job seeking, and expanding my skills because we moved to a new state for my wife's job and I had to settle for work that would be damaging to my career if I didn't continue studies and have some examples of modern work. I would assert that these are like an unpublished manuscript who's value is theoretical. It should not be valued at or near retail. 2. Can I compare with value of hand made products for insurance or charitable contributions? I've been told that if my instruments burned in a fire or donated they would be valued at cost of materials, not retail. Isn't there an argument to be made that this is not equitable? 3. After separation I purchased $26,000 (net cost) of inventory and sold half of it. I paid child support based on my earnings, but have $14,000 of inventory left over. The court valued it at $22,000 and shorted me on equity from the house because of this asset, but did not distribute the $14,000 in debt on the inventory. I would argue that the value is replacement cost, not retail, and debt needs to be accounted for, thus the value is nullified. 4. I pay child support based on income and distributing value of inventory for sale based on retail means she is awarded part of the profit before sale is made, and I will pay her again when I sell it (in child support) as well as tax, but can't write off part of that debt. Thanks.
  4. Is there any way to get new evidence included in an appeal or to have that evidence somehow brought before the court after a decision is made? My divorce was finalized, but I've discovered my wife was hiding a savings account and probably some other account from which she was paying for personal therapy so the therapy could be conducted in secret. Also relevant because there are some other ongoing legal disputes between us that makes her mental health records relevant, but she has hidden the identity of therapists by paying from accounts that were undisclosed even in the financial discovery during divorce. Also, there was a scary incident involving a mental health breakdown and physical threats that she lied about in the hearing. I was able to get a police report in which the officer corroborates my version of events, which is 180 degrees from what she claims. It shows not only that she is lying about her mental health issues (even without the records available), calls her credibility in to question overall. She essentially blamed the whole event on me and portrays me as bullying her to go to the hospital, but the police reports states that the officers spoke with her independently and were so concerned about her answers that they told her they could either go in the ambulance or they would take her to the barracks for evaluation. I did file an appeal because I think there were some significant factual errors as well, and the judge's decision essentially gives her everything and bankrupts me. Not to mention that she's repeatedly violated custody orders, and admitted it in the hearing, yet the judge found it to be 'in her favor' that she was the primary caregiver during the period that she repeatedly violated the parent child contact order, and filed a flood of motions that had nothing to do with the welfare of the child just to block visitation. I probably can't afford representation for the appeal, and I understand it's a long shot anyways. I just don't understand how she gets the sole legal rights and responsibilities specifically 'because' she violated the order for 9 months and limited my contact. Any suggestions for how to proceed?
  5. NH State Law has a statute about secret recording or disclosing recording without consent, but I'm confused about this. During a FaceTime call with my ex-wife and daughter (which she was aware I was recording) she stepped out of the frame with her phone and began recording secretly. She then introduced this recording in to court in Vermont claiming it was threatening. She claimed that "knowing him for over a decade I know that tone of voice is threatening" and the judge seems to have bought BS. So here's my confusion, is disclosure without consent against the law in NH or am I reading that wrong? Does disclosure include sharing it with your attorney (as I shared it with my attorney as well) or is introducing it in to court without my consent still legal? Is it sufficient that my attorney didn't object, thus consent is implied?
  6. I've just recently seen my wife's Victim Impact Statement in relation to my criminal case. I see that there are several statements that are provably false, and significant to the criminal case and custody battle. In some cases she makes claims like "he refused to tell me where he was taking our child" but then several months later in her testimony at the restraining order hearing she knew not only where we were going, but could describe the campsite that I told her I was going to. It seems as though she must know that her statement was a lie. There are other such statements in there, which are relevant and provably false (although the biggest issues in the case are not provably false). I'm wondering whether there's any recourse if she lies in an affidavit associated with her victim impact statement. It certainly influences the judge's opinion of me right off the bat, and if that makes it in to the criminal court I think the jury poorly of me as well. Any relevant complaint or legal option that I can pursue here? Thanks.
  7. Thank you again for clarifying. I didn't realize that I have to go through my attorney of record, but I guess that makes sense. I've been thinking of giving him the boot, but nobody else was available when I began the divorce process a few months back. I can't help but think I'd be just as well off representing myself, but I realize that is probably incredibly naive. More just an expression of how frustrating this has been. Any recommendations for an excellent family law attorney in the Windsor/Orange County area in VT would me much appreciated. Thanks again.
  8. She did complain to the police that I was 'stalking' her, but has not yet filed anything with the court. Her lawyer has threatened it, though. I don't doubt that it will come up in court in some context, but it may not be until after my window of time to get footage has closed. If there needs to be something more than a police report, then I may be out of luck.
  9. I did check with the businesses, and I still have a couple weeks before they delete the footage. My lawyer isn't much help and takes months to accomplish anything. He is the eternal pessimist and would not even consider trying to sort out whether he can get this footage. I'll have to do it on my own. I just don't know what to file and with whom. Thanks.
  10. Is there some process whereby I can compel a business to release surveillance footage to me to provide proof that I did not violate my restraining order? For more context, my wife has been making a series of false claims to ensure that she controls custody of our child in our divorce. She has had one of her parents corroborate claims, which makes it very hard for me to defend myself. In the incident in question she claims that I was 'stalking' her while she was running errands. A New Hampshire police officer spoke with both of us and concluded that I did not violate the order, and did not request any surveillance from the parking area or the stores that I was in. The dilemma, however, is that my wife's attorney is still threatening to file to have the restraining order expanded based on these claims and my attorney said he "doesn't know a judge who wouldn't grant an expansion of the order based on her claims". Without physical evidence I can't refute what she and her parents claim. The police officer who investigated is a NH officer, but our family court proceedings are taking place in VT and NH officers refuse to testify out of state. As a result, the police report is inadmissible and the judge will have only our testimony unless I can get some further evidence. I am desperately trying to protect myself here, and I hope that this may actually be a way for me to start to establish for the court that she is lying to get me in trouble and taking advantage of my honesty by weaving a little truth in, then making wild claims. Yes, I was in town. I drove into a parking lot and saw them, then immediately left. I think the parking lot cameras can show this, and disprove claims that I was following them around. Any advice is much appreciated. Also, I do have a lawyer, but he is not at all proactive and I am pretty much on my own with gathering evidence to protect myself. If anyone has recommendations for an excellent family law attorney in VT I would appreciate that as well. I need all the help I can get. Thanks.
  11. Thanks, that makes sense. I'll see what I can figure out. As for the "previous post", that thread was about perjury specifically and what can be done when there are false claims over and over. I can prove some things were false, but evidence was not allowed into court. It's sort of relevant to this question, but based on your response I don't think it would really make any difference. Thanks again.
  12. This is sort of a tangent to my previous post 'perjury and false claims' Is there some way to appeal a restraining order? In our hearing the judge cut us short in spite of my attorney asking for more time. I did not testify because there are criminal charges pending, but that meant that none of my evidence was allowed in to court. Here is what I have, which I think ought to be considered: New evidence, which helps support my claim that my wife is framing me. It establishes that she made claims about damage to the house before her allegations about assault, but the damage to the house never happened. I didn't have evidence at the hearing, but now I do. Essentially, she made a report earlier in the day then attacked me later in the day and accused me of abuse. Caused self injury after I left and told the police I attacked her. The fact that the earlier incident never happened seems to support the notion that this was all set up in advance. Evidence of attorney misconduct: Her lawyer knowingly represented false statements, and I believe they attorney violated ethical rules indicated below. (a) violate or attempt to violate the Rules of Professional Conduct, knowingly assist or induce another to do so, or do so through the acts of another; (c) engage in conduct involving dishonesty, fraud, deceit or misrepresentation; (d) engage in conduct that is prejudicial to the administration of justice; (e) state or imply an ability to influence improperly a government agency or official or to achieve results by means that violate the Rules of Professional Conduct or other law; I still have the evidence, which was not admitted by the judge, but it proves that my wife perjured herself in her allegations that I caused reckless injury to my child and 'refused to explain the injury'. It also establishes that my wife is collaborating with her mother to frame me as her mother was on the witness list to corroborate this lie. So, what does it take to get this overturned or is it even possible?
  13. Thanks. That does make sense. I do have some evidence of her using visitation as a way to force violations. I have videos showing how she has held on to our 2 year old daughter and tried to lure me in to coming over to get her and break the 10 ft rule for child drop off. These interactions have sometimes spanned as much as 5 minutes as I wait for her to have our daughter brought to me. At another visit she parked so close to the play area during my visitation that I couldn't go outside without violating the order, so I called the police to ask for assistance. The came and talked with her, then told me that she's within her rights to stay there and I'll just need to stay inside during my visit. My lawyer says this looks like harassment though because she isn't breaking the law and I'm calling the police. That just doesn't make any sense to me. I'm just trying to ask for help when I'm put in an impossible situation. So far, though, my lawyer is not seeming proactive about any of this, and I'm trying to figure out what questions to ask and how to prompt some action to protect myself, particularly as her lawyer is now threatening to file a motion to have the restraining order expanded. I meet with my lawyer tomorrow.
  14. Criminal charges are abuse against my wife. Really, she attacked me and I held her back and then left the area. She seems to have dragged her fingers across her arm to leave red marks, but they aren't from me. Good luck convincing the cops or jury that, though. The restraining order is related to the abuse claim, as such, I was advised not to testify in the restraining order because of the pending criminal trial. She did try to infer abuse against our child suggesting that a simple slip and fall, which I explained in detail was something more suspicious. She claimed our child had 'a black eye' which is false. She did have a bump on her cheekbone, but 4 days later (next time I saw our child) there was no sign of the injury. She claimed that I refused to explain the injury, but I have a recording where I point out the injury immediately upon bringing our child back to the mother. Claiming the injury was more substantial and that I refused to explain it were her attempts to get our child included in the restraining order. There were other details that are important contextually, but not directly related to the abuse allegation. More just showing that her narrative suggesting that she was afraid due to earlier events (also false claims) was false. It's kind of a long story, but there was quite a trail of lies strung together to justify her leaving work early and intercepting me, which is when she attacked me. She denies having attacked me, but I don't deny putting my hands on her shoulders to hold her back. Not a great position to be in going in to trial. My attorney did cross her on these issues, but the judge denied my attorney's request for more time and cut us down to less than 2 hours if I recall correctly. Because I was not testifying he did not allow my recording into evidence, which would have proved that she was lying about me refusing to explain the injury. I also have photos showing that the injury didn't develop into a bruise also not admissible unless I was going to testify. I don't know how that would have effected his decision since he did not keep our child on the restraining order, but upheld the order for my wife. To me, the fact that I can prove that she was lying about other material facts should bear weight in terms of her testimony as a whole, however, I don't know how it really works. There is also some other evidence that I've been trying to collect, which would disprove her allegations from earlier in the day before the alleged assault. She made some claims about a scary, violent episode in which nobody was harmed, and if I can get back into my house I have some evidence that I think can disprove that. Thus far she has done everything in her power to keep me out of that house to collect my belongings, so I think she has some idea that I have further evidence, which she can't refute.
  15. I'm in the process of getting a divorce, and my wife has falsely accused me of abuse so she can control these proceedings. Any time I do anything to suggest that she bears any responsibility for the state of things or don't accept her attempt to wield absolute dictatorial control over all things related to our child she responds by making new claims of abuse or further restricting my contact with our child. The problem here is that she was able to get a restraining order by making more false claims, and even though I had recorded evidence to dispute some of her claims I was advised not to testify in the restraining order hearing because I have a criminal trial pending. In each of these instances she preys upon my honesty, and when I tell the truth of what happened and she spins a wild tale (with her mother corroborating whatever she says) it can look incriminating. Most recent example is that I saw her dad in a parking lot while I was looking for a place to park, so I left the area. Ran some errands elsewhere in town, and have receipts to prove it. A few hours later I got a call from the police, and although they didn't tell me exactly what the allegation was I could surmise from the line of questioning that she was claiming that I was following her around rather than having left the area. Based on the locations that he mentioned it was clear to me that it wasn't just that she happened to go to the same places as I did, but she claimed I was still in the part of town where she last saw me. Of course this would be a violation of the restraining order, and it seems like the bar is pretty low for her to get me into hot water, especially if she has family members willing to corroborate her lies. So far based on consultation with my lawyer it seems as though the court will not likely take any action to prevent her lies, and the prosecutor is never going to bring a perjury case against her no matter how egregious her lies are. My fear is that if she keeps throwing **** out there eventually I won't have the proof to refute it, and there's no repercussion for her if she keeps doing it. How can this be part of our criminal justice system? Any advice for what I can do in a situation like this? In the criminal trial in particular it is evident that all the lies, manipulation, and clear evidence that her motive is something other than 'being afraid'. She just wants control and to avoid any blame for the breakup. Her perjury (from the restraining order hearing), false statements (multiple times to police), misrepresentations, and manipulation of the system don't seem to be admissible in my assault trial even though it would impeach her testimony because the best documented instances are all from events after the initial assault allegation. That's because I didn't start protecting myself with recordings and documentation until after the first false claims. Your thoughts are appreciated.
  16. Not isn't the same thing. I think that when they tell you that there is 100% equity for 9 months, but the price is raised by more than the equity, then they haven't given you any equity. If if they were giving the customer 2/3 equity, then they'd pay at most 50% more than the purchase price. By adding extra markup and applying 2/3 of payments to the higher price the customer can pay over 80% more than the purchase price. There's also the issue of someone renting for a few months to make a decision under the impression that those few months of rent are going 100% towards the purchase price when in fact the equity is negated by a price increase it's dishonest.
  17. What I'm objecting to is that the equity is not what they claim it is if they raise the price. For example: a customer is in the store considering whether to buy or rent and they tell the customer that if they rent the first 9 months are 100% equity. It implies that there's no risk to try it out for 9 months and you're just paying towards the purchase if you decide to purchase. In reality there is so much extra markup on that contract that even after applying 9 months of rental payments your buyout is higher than the original purchase price. This is deceptive. My issue is not that it costs more to rent, that's a given. The issue is that the extra markup reserved only for rental contracts negates much of the equity that they claim to give to renters.
  18. Excerpt from contract (company name omitted): "Purchase Option: {company} agrees to apply all of the first nine months rent paid plus two-thirds of all rent paid thereafter toward the purchase of any instrument of equal or greater value (excluding keyboards and pianos) that may be purchased from {company} by Renter for the student named on this Agreement. This purchase option expires three months after the return date of the instrument. It is less expensive to purchase than to rent for a long period of time, and you may elect to purchase at any time. Contact {company} for information on purchase plans. There is no obligation to purchase." As far as pricing goes, they don’t publish prices for instruments, but they do have set prices. Example Cash Price: $1,400 Price if Customer has a Trade: $1,600 Price on a Rental Contract: $1,800 In this case rent is $35/month In this case they’ve added $400 to the price for the renter. After they deduct rental equity they will take 10% off the remaining balance. End result is that it takes more than a year to pay off the extra markup for a renter. The only way to get the higher price is to rent the instrument, so it isn’t a matter of negotiation, it’s a matter of policy that negates a significant portion of equity through a higher markup and the consumer is not getting what the contract says they’re getting. I hope I’ve made it more clear this time.
  19. Is it legal for a rent to own business to inflate the purchase price on a rental contract? The company operates in VT and NH, perhaps other neighboring states. They say that they give you 100% equity in the first 9 months and 2/3 equity after that. What they don't tell you is the 'purchase price' on the contract is 29% higher than the 'cash price'. Essentially that means that you have no equity in the first year because you're paying off the markup. They are musical instruments, often used in schools, and the law is unclear to me because musical instruments do seem to be treated differently, I'm just not clear how exactly that is. It seems to me that regardless of the law it is fundamentally deceptive to tell people that they're getting equity in the first year when they're not. Isn't there a possibility of a class action lawsuit here? Thousands of people over many years have been paying in to this scheme.
  20. Thanks for the input, sorry it took a while to respond. I haven't quite sorted this out, but it seems as though the law is just not quite clear in this instance. At this point I am trying to get out of this company ASAP, but I will be working with a competitor locally. I am still inclined to report this non-payment of sales tax, but I would not want to be publicly identified. I wouldn't want reporting this to be a big headache for me, and as someone who submitted invoices for this company I wouldn't want to be implicated in the non-payment of taxes. I expressed my belief that they were not adhering to the law (and they've been doing business this way for decades), but was told that I needed to follow procedure for filling out invoices. In this case, that meant that I was not supposed to add tax for parts used on repairs. The president of the company insisted that it 'wasn't worth it' to track parts because most of the charges were labor and many customers are schools, which are exempt from the sales tax. Bottom line is that I'm concerned that as someone who filled out these repair tags (I stopped totaling them after I was told not to add tax) that I could be implicated if they are audited. Perhaps reporting it is a way to avoid being held liable?
  21. I am trying to figure out what my rights are and what protections I have from employer harassment. I'll have to be vague about my line of work so this doesn't effect me at work, but the basic issue is my boss has a prejudice against the clientele that I serve. It isn't a protected class, think of it more like a car dealer that does 10% of it's business with motorcycles and the boss hates motorcycles. That means for me, who was hired to improve that subset of the business, I get a lot of aggression that nobody else in the business seems to face. I get fairly regular comments about 'getting out' of my portion of the business. I have been afraid to take any leave even for the birth of our child because I have been made to feel like I could be let go at any time for no real reason, and it's really more about the mood of the boss than anything else. The comments about 'getting out' of my portion of the business usually are part of a meeting where we are discussing how the needs of my clients differ from the rest of the business. It has never had anything to do with work performance. This bias has led to really bad decisions and an ever increasing work load because he will not staff my department fully. In May I was so overworked that I developed Tendonitis and he still refused to hire someone for another 6 months. After hiring someone in the middle of the 2 month busy season where everyone works overtime for 10 weeks straight he blamed me for not being caught up and was even more aggressive. The new hire is also getting the same threats of 'getting out' of our portion of the business and saying things like 'you still need to prove to me that there's a position for you here at all.' which is a pretty obnoxious thing to say to someone you just hired 2 months ago, when the employee just moved from out of state for this job. I am not a protected class. White Male. Boss is white male. He is President of the company and the board consists of family members because his father (now dead) founded the business and it has passed down to the 3 siblings. I asked one of the sisters for a mediation and the boss flatly lied about all these issues, and lied about the constraints that he put on our department to restrict us from building that portion of the business. He was allowed to question the employees who witnessed his aggression so they were afraid to answer honestly when he is in the room and says "did I really say that!". It leaves me looking like I'm just making things up and trying to incite some sort of rebellion when I was asking for mediation and de-escalation. It's all quite absurd, but somehow I am just not convinced that I have any recourse here. It just feels wrong. I appreciate any advice that you have.
  22. I have been working for a company for several years, and they have not been charging tax on parts when they do repairs. It is my understanding that labor is not taxed, but materials are taxed. Another company where I worked previously was just audited and supposedly paid huge fines for not charging sales tax on materials. When I first started working for the company I flagged the issue to the President, one of the board members, several of the office staff, the head of the repair department, among others, but it was dismissed. I don't have evidence of those conversations, but I do have evidence that I was initially applying tax on my repair tickets initially before being told not to do it. I'm considering whistleblowing on this issue. Not sure if you really call it tax evasion, and the language I see from tax issues seem to focus on income tax fraud, which seems different to me. Not sure what really applies to failure to collect sales tax. Here are my basic concerns; 1. I would really want to be anonymous. I really despise my boss, and am working on going off to start my own business (in competition with my current employer) sometime in the next couple years, however, I may need to work with some of my former co-workers in the future and would also want to limit the potential damage to my reputation if my own business doesn't work out and I have to have any references from this company. Will my anonymity really be protected if I report this issue? 2. If possible I'd like to get an Informant Award, which may also help me with downpayment for a loan to start a business or at least a buffer when I leave my current employer. Does some sort of Informant Award apply to reporting failure to collect sales tax in Vermont? Thanks for your feedback.
  23. In Vermont in a residential lease they have to give 48 hours notice before sending a contractor. If I came home to my apartment and there was a guy in there working on the AC, and I had no notice it would be a violation. I don't have a separate door to lock at my office. He'll unlock the front door to the building and come in when he wants. My boss just renegotiated the lease for October. Hopefully he worked it out. Thanks again everyone.
  24. There are instances of entry without notice as well, but I was trying not to go into unnecessary detail. I've come in to the shop to find a contractor who has keys to the building working on fixing my AC. I wasn't notified about it, but arrived at work to find someone in our space working. My office is in a back corner of the space and it is an appointment only location. People are referred from our main office in a building a few doors down, and I get a call to expect a client and that's the only scenario where someone comes in to my work space. The landlord shows up and wanders in as he pleases if he has a question or something. Not the end of the world, and the issue of large groups having access on weekends is what really bothers me, but I would be really furious if he wandered in while I was working with a client or brought a group in for a meeting. My clients can sometimes be uncomfortable if they don't feel like they have privacy. There are also some times in my work where it requires really intense focus, and people in my line of work can sometimes get a bit ugly when they are doing a task that requires that kind of focus and must be accomplished in a very tight time frame. In that scenario a little mistake can mean a setback of several hours. Another reason why it is not a walk-in space. I know in a residential lease these sorts of things would be illegal, but it sounds like that's not the case in a commercial lease unless we specify it in the lease. Thanks everyone for the input.
  25. Let me clarify the portion that seems inconsistent. We had a verbal agreement with the previous landlord that they would put up a wall before utilizing the other half of this floor. It was not included in the lease. The lease was signed from 10/2014-10/2015 and renewed last October without review. New landlord took over sometime after October. I'm really astonished that there wouldn't be some sort of protection for security and privacy implicit in a commercial lease. I know homeowners have protection under the law to prevent the landlord from entering without notice and appropriate cause. Thanks for your input.
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