My experience with the law is limited, in the sense of committing a crime – I’ve been caught and have paid the fine for speeding (although in this town you’re not going anywhere fast); there was that attempt to board a flight with expired pepper spray canister (but in my defence it was three years expired and deemed useless); and then that time…but I was really young not even worth mentioning here.
Anyways, a vacation day from the 4×6 was required last week to attend settlement hearing on a small claims charge. This was my first experience for anything of this nature and it was definitely an experience.
Our humble abode is an older home where we’ve managed to make a few upgrades as savings permit. A few years ago we planned for a bathroom reno. The contractor didn’t come as a referral from a friend – likely where we went wrong – but we had done research and background checks. The short of it, he cancelled the contract and has yet to refund the deposit. As it turns out, Contractor seems to be a bit shady in his financial dealings but these have no bearing on this case.
Last week we made a second appearance in a settlement conference on this small claims case. In the first conference Contractor was a no show. It would’ve been easier if he just didn’t show up again (another no show would rule in our favour). It was so close – he wasn’t present at the appointed time but Judge Mediator allotted 15 extra minutes and Contractor showed up with five minutes left.
You know, there are those types who think they can talk their way out of anything because they are smarter than everybody else in the room. Contractor was very much like that but Judge Mediator wasn’t having any of it – even offered his 31 years of law experience but Contractor kept at it with his defences: incorrect company name (a moot point as company is not incorporated), gas and employee wages owed, delayed start date… Unfortunately for him, the paper trail left behind tells a different story. And although Judge Mediator encouraged a settlement (at a lesser cost to all parties – Contractor, us and the system), Contractor insisted upon a trial.
In the amount of time it took for us to get home, we received an email hoping to settle at a fair amount (1/3 of the amount owing). In light of these latest events, fair (in my opinion) includes: deposit plus interest; two work days each (for both hubby and I) to attend two hearing dates; billing for gas and parking; and cost for filing paperwork.
Trial preparations here we go.
If you’ve gotten this far, you must be really curious about my life of crime. I’m pretty sure the Statute of Limitations has long since passed but when mothers are involved is there every a limitation?
At four or five years of age, irritated with having to go shopping at K-mart with my parents I was sulking in the clothing section where I came across a 10K gold pin. The pin was not in the jewellery section and I had every intention of returning it but the parental browsing was taking too long and I guess I forgot.
Later in the week, while doing the laundry my mother came across this gold pin. When questioned on it (at a very loud volume) I lied, told her someone from school gave it to me because I thought, as a thief the police would lock me up and throw away the key. I was told to return it to the classmate but I had no one to return it to and was too scared to keep it – I tossed it in the garbage. It was the fear of jail-time and mother’s wraith – I’ve changed my ways. I’m on the straight and narrow. I’m the law-abiding citizen you’ve read about in these blog posts.
Title Source: Hawaii Five-O produced by CBS Productions