Roof Scammed

How not to buy a brick in a box off the back of a truck.
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gnome
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Re: Roof Scammed

Postby gnome » Sun Oct 27, 2013 3:03 pm

Cool Hand wrote:
gnome wrote:My focus has been on recovering, but that may be a good thing to do. More news when I have it.


Recovery? You're joking, right? These are almost surely fly-by-night scam artists. There are no assets to recover from. Your best remedy, if you have one at all, is to try to make amends with the insurance company you unwittingly helped defraud. Good luck with that, as from their perspective you are trying to shift the blame or bag to them. I suspect you are left holding the bag, as most scam victims are. That's what scams do. They leave you holding the bag with no real remedy. Sorry.

CH


I'm not expecting any magic at all. If I contact a lawyer and they don't want to take the case, I'll understand why. It just seems worth checking.

Not really mad at my insurance company, for the exact reason you discuss above. If there's nothing to be done, I know I'm the one that needs to eat this.
"If fighting is sure to result in victory, then you must fight! Sun Tzu said that, and I'd say he knows a little bit more about fighting than you do, pal, because he invented it, and then he perfected it so that no living man could best him in the ring of honor. Then, he used his fight money to buy two of every animal on earth, and then he herded them onto a boat, and then he beat the crap out of every single one. And from that day forward any time a bunch of animals are together in one place it's called a zoo! (Beat) Unless it's a farm!"
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Re: Roof Scammed

Postby Rob Lister » Sun Oct 27, 2013 3:52 pm

Gnome, you still need to contact the various law enforcement agencies. Like CH said, it likely won't help you in this, but think of it like voting. The more complaints they get, the more likely they are to expend a little effort shutting this particular group down. Squeaky wheel, yada. Besides, your complaint may win the lottery for their next week's agenda. You can justify your waste of time by telling yourself it is better that they go after them than you do it personally. :)

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Re: Roof Scammed

Postby Cool Hand » Sun Oct 27, 2013 5:17 pm

gnome wrote:I'm not expecting any magic at all. If I contact a lawyer and they don't want to take the case, I'll understand why. It just seems worth checking.


That's fine, and I don't want to discourage you from doing that. I will ask you this rhetorical question though. If these guys scammed you and they are judgment proof, meaning there are no assets to recover from and no insurance coverage (and there's not for fraud, so that's a moot question really), how exactly does the lawyer get paid? If you are expecting someone to handle it on a contingent fee basis (and I've never seen any prospective client who didn't expect the lawyer to handle this kind of case that way), then 33 1/3% of zero is what? What's in it for the lawyer?

Not being crass, just realistic because I'm been in that chair many, many times. If there is no source of recovery and you're not willing to plunk down a very fat retainer up front and be prepared to pay hourly fees in the neighborhood of $250-$300 (and why would you? you would be throwing good money after bad), then there is no incentive at all for any lawyer, no matter how hungry, to take your "case." No way to get paid = no fucking way I'm taking on your problem. Note: it's your problem.

CH
....life purpose is pay taxes -- pillory 12/05/13

And you run and you run to catch up with the sun but it's sinking
Racing around to come up behind you again
The sun is the same in a relative way, but you're older
Shorter of breath and one day closer to death.

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Re: Roof Scammed

Postby gnome » Mon Oct 28, 2013 12:00 am

That's really the crux isn't it. If NBRC has no assets, I expect any lawyer to turn me down. But I'm not honestly sure what their status is. In a contingency arrangement, is it typical for a law office to research the assets of the company or owner a client wants to sue, or is it on the client to show that the company has assets worth suing for?

I had it in my head that they were in a better position to know, and would give me the news after I get them the initial details.
"If fighting is sure to result in victory, then you must fight! Sun Tzu said that, and I'd say he knows a little bit more about fighting than you do, pal, because he invented it, and then he perfected it so that no living man could best him in the ring of honor. Then, he used his fight money to buy two of every animal on earth, and then he herded them onto a boat, and then he beat the crap out of every single one. And from that day forward any time a bunch of animals are together in one place it's called a zoo! (Beat) Unless it's a farm!"
--Soldier, TF2

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Re: Roof Scammed

Postby Cool Hand » Mon Oct 28, 2013 3:15 am

gnome wrote:That's really the crux isn't it. If NBRC has no assets, I expect any lawyer to turn me down. But I'm not honestly sure what their status is. In a contingency arrangement, is it typical for a law office to research the assets of the company or owner a client wants to sue, or is it on the client to show that the company has assets worth suing for?


I suppose it may depend on the law office. At least in my state it is relatively easy to check on the corporate status of a business entity and see who the agent for service of process is and who the nominal owner(s) is/are (can't speak for FL). It is also fairly easy to check to see if that entity or its owners is/are in bankruptcy. Both those things take up real time (and cost nominal but real fees to search), however, and I can only speak for myself, but I wouldn't do those things on my time or my dime in a case of small stature (even under the best of circumstances, if everything lines up just right for you, you are probably looking at damages at most in the very low five figures if you even have a case to pursue, so my potential fee is what -- maybe $4,000 in three years' time, if we're lucky?, and this would likely have me putting in 20-50 hours of my time from start to finish in a possible lawsuit? no thanks).

I would charge you 1-2 hours of my time just to look into that, so about $500 just to see if they are worth pursuing, and then there is no guarantee of success. Even if I did determine they had some assets, there is still no way I would take such a small possible consumer fraud case on a contingency fee basis. That leaves me taking all the risk for at best a small reward. No thanks. I've got bigger fish to fry, ones that pay me in actual money, not pots of magical gold at the end of a long, expensive rainbow that I pay for up front, or at least ones with a definite source of recovery and clear liability. That's not your case.

I had it in my head that they were in a better position to know, and would give me the news after I get them the initial details.


Even if they are, unless your possible damages are much more than I'm guessing they could be under the best of circumstances for you, I'm guessing the economics of the risk vs. reward don't work for them. I know for me, if someone like you showed up in my office, with an appointment of course, I wouldn't even consider taking your case on contingency for even an instance, and even if you offered to plunk down a $5,000 retainer and let me bill against that hourly, I still wouldn't take it. Why? Because I would spend more time on your case than that retainer warrants and likely come up with nothing for you in the end.

What would that get me? A pissed off client who is out $5,000 with nothing to show for it but a legal bill. You would bad mouth me to others and possibly file a complaint with the state bar that I would have to respond to, spending even more of my time and money. Bottom line: it would end badly for both of us, and we would both resent each other when it's over.

In the real world, I would say "No" under any circumstances, in all likelihood. I would tell you the truth that you got burned, the insurance company got burned, and neither you nor I would be better served by your hiring me to throw good money after bad. I would politely decline to represent you and advise you to be more careful with regard to any solicitation in the future.

But that's just me. Look into it yourself with a local lawyer and see. You might get a different answer, you might not.

CH
....life purpose is pay taxes -- pillory 12/05/13

And you run and you run to catch up with the sun but it's sinking
Racing around to come up behind you again
The sun is the same in a relative way, but you're older
Shorter of breath and one day closer to death.

"Time" -- Pink Floyd

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Re: Roof Scammed

Postby Doctor X » Mon Oct 28, 2013 5:36 am

Image

gnome ... gnome ... What have I ever done to make you treat me so disrespectfully? Had you come to me in friendship, then this scum that ruined your roof would be suffering this very day. And that by chance if an honest man such as yourself should make enemies, then they would become my enemies. And then they would fear you.

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Re: Roof Scammed

Postby gnome » Mon Oct 28, 2013 10:23 pm

@CH: A dose of reality is generally helpful. Managing expectations must be a frustrating part of the job.
It is an act of pure optimism that spurs me a little bit further. If the lawyer I consult sees it your way it will make total sense, and I'll suck it up and move on.
Last edited by gnome on Mon Oct 28, 2013 11:30 pm, edited 2 times in total.
"If fighting is sure to result in victory, then you must fight! Sun Tzu said that, and I'd say he knows a little bit more about fighting than you do, pal, because he invented it, and then he perfected it so that no living man could best him in the ring of honor. Then, he used his fight money to buy two of every animal on earth, and then he herded them onto a boat, and then he beat the crap out of every single one. And from that day forward any time a bunch of animals are together in one place it's called a zoo! (Beat) Unless it's a farm!"
--Soldier, TF2

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Re: Roof Scammed

Postby asthmatic camel » Mon Oct 28, 2013 10:54 pm

If it helps, gnome, I think most people fall for a scam at some point in their lives. I lost quite a lot of money to an accomplished con-man as a youngster and wised up pretty quickly. I got my revenge, (don't ask how), but I didn't get my money back.

Looks like this case is one you'll have to swallow, as bitter a cup as it may be.
Shit happens. The older you get, the more often shit happens. So you have to try not to give a shit even when you do. Because, if you give too many shits, you've created your own shit creek and there's no way out other than swimming through the shit. Oh, and fuck.

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Re: Roof Scammed

Postby gnome » Mon Oct 28, 2013 11:29 pm

Doctor X wrote:Image

gnome ... gnome ... What have I ever done to make you treat me so disrespectfully? Had you come to me in friendship, then this scum that ruined your roof would be suffering this very day. And that by chance if an honest man such as yourself should make enemies, then they would become my enemies. And then they would fear you.

--J. "But I Didn't Know . . . Until This Day . . . That it was -- Pyrrho All Along!" D.


:D

Sometimes I wish I didn't have scruples...
"If fighting is sure to result in victory, then you must fight! Sun Tzu said that, and I'd say he knows a little bit more about fighting than you do, pal, because he invented it, and then he perfected it so that no living man could best him in the ring of honor. Then, he used his fight money to buy two of every animal on earth, and then he herded them onto a boat, and then he beat the crap out of every single one. And from that day forward any time a bunch of animals are together in one place it's called a zoo! (Beat) Unless it's a farm!"
--Soldier, TF2

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Re: Roof Scammed

Postby Doctor X » Tue Oct 29, 2013 4:47 am

It does suck.

I was involved in a case where the money in dispute would have been about maybe $20,000. That reads like a lot until you consider going to trial. I made the lawyer involved laugh when I described taking it to trial as "an expensive temper-tantrum." Which is what it would be. At $400-500/hr . . . $20,000 disappears real quickly.

It sucks but you try to make it suck as less as possible. Or to quote "Louis DePalma"--Whatever--from War of the Roses: "There's no winning in divorce. There's just greater ways of losing!"

--J.D.
Mob of the Mean: Free beanie, cattle-prod and Charley Fan Club!
"Doctor X is just treating you the way he treats everyone--as subhuman crap too dumb to breathe in after you breathe out."--Don
DocX: FTW.--sparks
"Doctor X wins again."--Pyrrho
"Never sorry to make a racist Fucktard cry."--His Humble MagNIfIcence
"It was the criticisms of Doc X, actually, that let me see more clearly how far the hypocrisy had gone."--clarsct
"I'd leave it up to Doctor X who has been a benevolent tyrant so far."--Grammatron
"Indeed you are a river to your people.
Shit. That's going to end up in your sig."--Pyrrho
"Try a twelve step program and accept Doctor X as your High Power."--asthmatic camel

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Re: Roof Scammed

Postby Cool Hand » Tue Oct 29, 2013 4:01 pm

gnome wrote:@CH: A dose of reality is generally helpful. Managing expectations must be a frustrating part of the job.


That's a very insightful comment. You have no idea. It is indeed. Unrealistic expectations on the part of clients is easily the biggest source of frustration for me in my career. Most people really have no idea what lawyers actually do or can or can't do.

CH
....life purpose is pay taxes -- pillory 12/05/13

And you run and you run to catch up with the sun but it's sinking
Racing around to come up behind you again
The sun is the same in a relative way, but you're older
Shorter of breath and one day closer to death.

"Time" -- Pink Floyd

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Re: Roof Scammed

Postby Cool Hand » Tue Oct 29, 2013 11:09 pm

Doctor X wrote:I was involved in a case where the money in dispute would have been about maybe $20,000. That reads like a lot until you consider going to trial. I made the lawyer involved laugh when I described taking it to trial as "an expensive temper-tantrum." Which is what it would be. At $400-500/hr . . . $20,000 disappears real quickly.


When I first started my private practice, I bought a book about starting a law practice from scratch by a guy named Jay Fooberg. It was chock full of nuts and bolts advice, but the best chapter by far was about kinds of cases never ever to take, even when you're really hungry. His listed several reasons not to take these cases, but they boiled down to some variation of because there is no way to please the client, it will result in a bar complaint against you that you will have to defend against, and there's no way to earn a fee from it.

One of the categories of cases was one he called "hurt feelings" cases. These are typically disputes between neighbors, former lovers, former friends, or even workplace disputes that are not clear cases of unlawful employment discrimination, and civil suits for assault in which there are not serious bodily injuries to the potential client.

A "temper-tantrum" case almost certainly fits into that category.

What also fits into that category is every fucking time a client sits across from my desk and says, "I don't care about the money. It's the principle of the thing."

Huge red flag. That means there is no way to satisfy the client because he or she is looking for a moral victory, to be validated in court by a judge or jury. Hey, that's fine if you want validation, but it's not going to be on my dime.

Me: "You say it's not about money, then OK, please leave a retainer in certified funds in the amount of $30,000 at the front desk."

Client: (Shock, horror) "Well, that's just ridiculous. I'm not paying that kind of money."

Me: "I thought you said it wasn't about money."

:D

Ah, now we see the violence inherent in the system.

CH
....life purpose is pay taxes -- pillory 12/05/13

And you run and you run to catch up with the sun but it's sinking
Racing around to come up behind you again
The sun is the same in a relative way, but you're older
Shorter of breath and one day closer to death.

"Time" -- Pink Floyd

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Re: Roof Scammed

Postby swellman » Wed Oct 30, 2013 2:31 am

Very dated but still relevant advice courtesy of Bloom County

Steve's Law Tips: Who should I Sue?

Damn, the 80's were fun...

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Re: Roof Scammed

Postby gnome » Wed Sep 16, 2015 4:35 am

Fuckers are in jail! They got busted by two different states and a judge refused bond for two of them. One posted a large bond which will contribute to reimbursing victims if they are convicted. I don't know how many people I might be sharing that with.
"If fighting is sure to result in victory, then you must fight! Sun Tzu said that, and I'd say he knows a little bit more about fighting than you do, pal, because he invented it, and then he perfected it so that no living man could best him in the ring of honor. Then, he used his fight money to buy two of every animal on earth, and then he herded them onto a boat, and then he beat the crap out of every single one. And from that day forward any time a bunch of animals are together in one place it's called a zoo! (Beat) Unless it's a farm!"
--Soldier, TF2

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Re: Roof Scammed

Postby Anaxagoras » Wed Sep 16, 2015 6:53 am

Thanks for bumping this thread gnome, if only to reread some wisdom from cool hand.

Also good to know that maybe, eventually you might get a little compensation.

Any chance you might be called to testify? Have you kept the evidence you might need to show you were one of the victims so you can get a piece of that bond if it comes to that?

Wait . . . are you sure this bond would go to the victims? Is it like posting bail or different? I don't think a bail bondsman would knowingly put up money that might be forfeit if the defendant is found guilty. If it's the defendant's own money, that's different.
A fool thinks himself to be wise, but a wise man knows himself to be a fool.
William Shakespeare

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Re: Roof Scammed

Postby gnome » Wed Sep 16, 2015 12:50 pm

An interesting question. I bet CH could have explained. :(

I'm not certain one way or the other, it was just what one article said.

I think I have kept enough evidence. I have a statement of the payment the insurance company made to them. I have an email from them acknowledging that they had not yet performed the work. If I dig into papers, I can probably find the receipt for the roofers I did hire, and the original agreement with NRCB.
"If fighting is sure to result in victory, then you must fight! Sun Tzu said that, and I'd say he knows a little bit more about fighting than you do, pal, because he invented it, and then he perfected it so that no living man could best him in the ring of honor. Then, he used his fight money to buy two of every animal on earth, and then he herded them onto a boat, and then he beat the crap out of every single one. And from that day forward any time a bunch of animals are together in one place it's called a zoo! (Beat) Unless it's a farm!"
--Soldier, TF2


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