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Have You Ever Been Sued?

 8:51 pm on Apr 17, 2009 (gmt 0)

Hi everyone. I received notice from my sheriffs department that I have a summons to be served on me. I was not home when they came by and I will be going to the sheriffs office to pick it up after the weekend.

I have NO clue what it could be as it isn't anything personal like child support, etc. My son is a grown man.

We've all had customers that are dissatisfied with something or another.

Have any of you ever been sued by a customer for either non-receipt of merchandise OR they did not like the merchandise?

If so, what happened? This is a real drag to have to worry about this all weekend until I can go pick the summons up. Never done anything like that or been served before, so I am clueless. Thanks for any help.



 8:53 pm on Apr 17, 2009 (gmt 0)

I'd suggest you phone a lawyer immediately. They can advise you on the best course of action.

Please, also be careful of what you post in a public forum on the internet.


 9:06 pm on Apr 17, 2009 (gmt 0)

I will be careful bakedjake. Thanks for caring, I truly appreciate it. I would not post any information, I just have no clue what on earth this could be about.

I was just trying to see if anyone else had ever been sued by a customer who was unhappy with your products or customer service or whatever. These days, I've had more than my share of customers trying to get something for nothing, so if it is even a customer issue I won't know till I pick up the summons.

Anyone else have this happen? I'm not asking for specific details <snip>. I was just wondering how bad this is.

Let's say a customer (who would be lying) said they did not receive their order or they say they did not like their merchandise or they did not like my customer service or whatever the issue is, what amount could they possibly sue you for? My merchandise ranges anywhere from $5.00 to about $250.00 or so.

Thanks for any help or information.

[edited by: bakedjake at 9:13 pm (utc) on April 17, 2009]
[edit reason] Please don't solicit StickyMail. [/edit]


 9:08 pm on Apr 17, 2009 (gmt 0)

I was just wondering how bad this is.

I don't think anyone can answer that question without getting into specifics about you and your business, which we don't allow on the forum and you don't want to divulge for obvious reasons.

It could be something completely wacky, like being summoned as a witness to an auto accident. No one can know.

But even before you pick up the summons, I suggest you phone a lawyer and discuss your situation.

what amount could they possibly sue you for?

Anyone can sue anyone for any reason and ask for anything in relief. The court decides if the complaint is reasonable under the circumstances and, if so, decides on an appropriate remedy. Alternatively, a settlement could be reached beforehand. But you don't even know if you're being sued yet - summons are issued for other reasons.

Don't panic, and call a lawyer.


 9:24 pm on Apr 17, 2009 (gmt 0)

Doubt it is a customer complaint and a sheriff doesn't deliver them they usually come by certified mail from a lawyers office.

I think they deliver a juror duty summons.


 9:41 pm on Apr 17, 2009 (gmt 0)

bwnbwn, man that would be a relief but also annoying to worry all weekend about being sued then find out it's only a jury duty thing.

Really? They send a sheriff out to serve you a summons for jury duty? I live in the sticks and the county I live in, the sheriffs office is like 30 or so miles away.

I've never done jury duty before, but I had no idea that they send a sheriff to serve you?


 9:46 pm on Apr 17, 2009 (gmt 0)

I've always gotten jury duty notices by mail. If you don't show up, THEN the sheriff will come and drag you in.

Can't you go into the sheriff's office over the weekend instead of having to fret about the issue until Monday?


 9:57 pm on Apr 17, 2009 (gmt 0)

LifeInAsia, they are closed on the weekends (at least this civil complaints department is). I have to wait until Monday to find out what the issue is. This is just my luck, everytime something goes wrong it's always on a Friday and you have to wait until Monday.

They would not tell me what it is over the phone because I could be someone else and they don't want to tell my business to anyone else.


 10:01 pm on Apr 17, 2009 (gmt 0)

I think civil lawsuits are served by a process server. They hang around your door and all they need to do is confirm your name and they leave it or give it to you if you take it. They can be tricky and act like they are delivering mail, flowers or whatever. If you don't answer or can manage not to confront them personally they cannot legally serve process and you can delay the court date indefinately.

I used to word at an office where they were trying to serve and the secretary would tell them so-and-so was not there, and they would just have to leave and try again.

A sherrif summons sounds like you missed a court date, or a judge called you into court for some reason. Probably would not do you any good to go in for it, if they really want you they will come get you, or send it certified mail at least, but that's just me.

Oh yea...I hope you have covered yourself businesswise with a corporation, company or LLC. They can take your personal assets, house, everything. The judge can freeze bank accounts at the trail so there is no time to transfer funds.


 10:09 pm on Apr 17, 2009 (gmt 0)

MrHard, I have an LLC.

Can a customer sue you for non-receipt of merchandise or if they did not like the merchandise?

How much can they sue you for? For instance if someone purchased something that costs 50 bucks, can they sue you for more than that?


 10:51 pm on Apr 17, 2009 (gmt 0)

I would think if it were an un-happy customer they would just issue a charge back and/or complain to the BBB.


 3:30 pm on Apr 19, 2009 (gmt 0)

One customer reported me to the police for fraud. He had issued a chargeback and I had sent him several letters, demanding payment, since I do not wait for the credit card companies to graciously decide a dispute but start collecting the money right away.

Then I got a hearing form from the police, that he had reported me for fraud because he had not bought anything from me, and I should fill out the form and give a statement.

Luckily I did not only have the signature that he had received the parcel, he also had picked it up at the post office where he had to show his identity card. So all I had to do is print out the DHL Track & Trace information and fax it to the police. I never heard from them again, but a few days later the payment was on my account. Until today I do not know what the guy had been thinking.

[edited by: lorax at 12:01 pm (utc) on April 20, 2009]
[edit reason] no YouTube videos please [/edit]


 4:13 pm on Apr 20, 2009 (gmt 0)

OK, we've all been waiting in suspense all weekend to know what it was. If you haven't been locked up with the key thrown away, can you report back to us? :)


 5:25 pm on Apr 20, 2009 (gmt 0)

Just as a FYI - in my county the sheriff does server summons for civil lawsuits.


 8:01 pm on Apr 20, 2009 (gmt 0)

Maybe he was locked up that would be a bummer.


 8:23 pm on Apr 20, 2009 (gmt 0)

Or maybe he has been silenced by his attorney, like should have happened on day one.

Following posts suggested he may have known (or at least strongly suspected) what it was all about...


 8:24 pm on Apr 20, 2009 (gmt 0)

In my county you can select either Sheriff or via Certified Mail for service options.


 8:59 pm on Apr 20, 2009 (gmt 0)

Yeah, looks like this habeas corpus may have come with a gag order...

Or maybe the relief of finding out (or avoiding...) the writ was so great he decided to take a vacation to an non-extradition country.

I kid, I kid. Logic tells me it can't be such a major ordeal as no sherrif I have ever heard of would drop by on Friday and let the criminal know he would be returning on Monday to try to serve them a summons a second time ("Uh yeah, hi. Is Mr. Madoff in? No? OK, well please let him know I'll be back again Monday at noon to try to arrest him again...and DON'T tell him I was here..."). Besides, I believe he has indicated that this is traveling through civil court and not criminal court:
they are closed on the weekends (at least this civil complaints department is)

If he hadn't mentioned his son being grown, my vote would have been for either a loud party or unkempt yard (due to the loud party...) or a dog who likes to use the neighbors yard, etc. Something relatively minor that requires a persistent neighbor who is good at filing paperwork to initiate.


 7:23 am on Apr 22, 2009 (gmt 0)

Or, it's a troll post. It does happen.

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