Century City Business Trial Lawyer Jeffrey Cowan

Victory Over Collection Company That Engages in the Unauthorized Practice of Law

A Century City company buys credit card debt and then sues to enforce it. While defending a lawsuit against one debtor, Jeffrey Cowan discovered that the company was "renting" the name of a lawyer (who was never there and whose State Bar record showed his office was at another location) and directing its non-lawyers employees to write legal papers on their own and then forge the lawyer's name on those papers before filing them with the court. Plus, the owner of the company - also not a lawyer -would hold himself out on the telephone as a lawyer. To make matters worse, the company had a history of (1) cheating its employees on their wages, and (2) filing bogus lawsuits against employees who asserted their rights or objected to its unlawful actions. The company also had a history of flouting the law - as evidenced by a federal judge's order in 2006 imposing more than $40,000 in sanctions against the company for intentionally violating a court order.

A former employee of the company gave two sworn statements exposing how the company and its owner carried out the unlicensed practice of law. The former employee also talked to a local newspaper reporter and reported the company to the State Bar of California. A few months after the declarations were given, the "collection company" sued not only the former employee but also his father. The dad had no involvement with the company but unlike his son had assets (a home). The lawsuit contained few allegations about the father and the few that were there were a sham.

Anti-Slapp Motion Filed at Superior Court to Dismiss Lawsuit of Credit Card Debt Sham

The father hired The Cowan Law Firm to defend him. We filed an anti-SLAPP motion to strike seeking to have the lawsuit dismissed because it had been filed solely to retaliate against the former employee for exercising his free speech rights. The Superior Court granted the motion in part, dismissed part of the lawsuit, and ordered that the company pay the father $17,000 for his legal fees. We then propounded discovery regarding the remaining bogus claims against the father. In the fall of 2007, a few days before the deadline for the plaintiff to “show its cards” and answer the discovery, the plaintiff voluntarily dismissed the father - with no warning and no conditions. The father now is looking to sue the company and its lawyer for malicious prosecution.

The Cowan Law Firm

Phone: (310) 394-1420

Fax:  (310) 394-1430

Email: info@cowan-law.com


Two Locations

LOS ANGELES

2049 Century Park East

Suite 3850

Los Angeles, California

90067-3149


SANTA MONICA

2425 Olympic Blvd, Suite 4000 W

Santa Monica, CA 90404



Call (310) 394-1420

2049 Century Park East, Suite 3850

Los Angeles, California 90067

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