Just when you thought it couldn't get any worse

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TommyK
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Re: Just when you thought it couldn't get any worse

Postby TommyK » Tue Feb 15, 2011 12:12 am

donzoli wrote:I don't believe that his failure to file for bankruptcy within 4 months makes this guy a horrible human being like some others make him out to be. People are trivializing bankruptcy by making it sound like its as easy to go through as posting on a message board. Not only is it not easy, it can also be somewhat humiliating.


I'm not saying he's a horrible human being. I am saying he's demonstrating qualities that indicate he would be a poor attorney.

And nobody was trivializing bankruptcy, but if that is your grand plan to relieve yourself of debt and you don't do ANYTHING for four months, and you have demonstrated no ability or desire to improve your financial situation, I think it is a completely reasonable decision for the state to say, "No - not yet. You figure things out first"

And sure, yes - i'm sure it's humiliating. What do you suggest the state of ohio does? Admit him? Let him sit for the bar despite being what I think is fairly obviously unfit to become an attorney? The state bar's main responsibility isn't to protect the feelings of the attorney or empathize with him. It's to protect the citizens of Ohio from unfit attorneys from practicing in the state.

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A'nold
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Re: Just when you thought it couldn't get any worse

Postby A'nold » Tue Feb 15, 2011 12:12 am

jasonc. wrote:why did he fail 3 times? who decides to take on 150,000 loan at 35 with 16,000 credit card debt


Someone that realizes he is headed nowhere in life and that something like this might be his only chance to "start over?"........oh wait.

peter844
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Re: Just when you thought it couldn't get any worse

Postby peter844 » Tue Feb 15, 2011 12:15 am

what exactly does the character and fitness test entail? How can the council tell him that he cannot take the bar because he is financially irresponsible?

I read the article and the posts but I don't agree with any of the answers so far.

And why is it Ohio's decision, what about employers, and for the guy who had 400k in debt, I do not know how someone could him take that much out in loans..must of been '03-'07.
Last edited by peter844 on Tue Feb 15, 2011 12:19 am, edited 1 time in total.

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donzoli
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Re: Just when you thought it couldn't get any worse

Postby donzoli » Tue Feb 15, 2011 12:18 am

TommyK wrote:
donzoli wrote:I don't believe that his failure to file for bankruptcy within 4 months makes this guy a horrible human being like some others make him out to be. People are trivializing bankruptcy by making it sound like its as easy to go through as posting on a message board. Not only is it not easy, it can also be somewhat humiliating.


I'm not saying he's a horrible human being. I am saying he's demonstrating qualities that indicate he would be a poor attorney.

And nobody was trivializing bankruptcy, but if that is your grand plan to relieve yourself of debt and you don't do ANYTHING for four months, and you have demonstrated no ability or desire to improve your financial situation, I think it is a completely reasonable decision for the state to say, "No - not yet. You figure things out first"

And sure, yes - i'm sure it's humiliating. What do you suggest the state of ohio does? Admit him? Let him sit for the bar despite being what I think is fairly obviously unfit to become an attorney? The state bar's main responsibility isn't to protect the feelings of the attorney or empathize with him. It's to protect the citizens of Ohio from unfit attorneys from practicing in the state.


He might be fiscally irresponsible but that doesn't mean he will make an awful attorney. I realize he has failed the bar multiple times as well, but that does not necessarily mean he will be an awful lawyer either. This thought that all attorney's are angels is ridiculous. Attorneys' lives are just as messed up as the next group, that doesn't make them incompetent in their professional lives.

peter844
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Re: Just when you thought it couldn't get any worse

Postby peter844 » Tue Feb 15, 2011 12:20 am

donzoli wrote:
TommyK wrote:
donzoli wrote:I don't believe that his failure to file for bankruptcy within 4 months makes this guy a horrible human being like some others make him out to be. People are trivializing bankruptcy by making it sound like its as easy to go through as posting on a message board. Not only is it not easy, it can also be somewhat humiliating.


I'm not saying he's a horrible human being. I am saying he's demonstrating qualities that indicate he would be a poor attorney.

And nobody was trivializing bankruptcy, but if that is your grand plan to relieve yourself of debt and you don't do ANYTHING for four months, and you have demonstrated no ability or desire to improve your financial situation, I think it is a completely reasonable decision for the state to say, "No - not yet. You figure things out first"

And sure, yes - i'm sure it's humiliating. What do you suggest the state of ohio does? Admit him? Let him sit for the bar despite being what I think is fairly obviously unfit to become an attorney? The state bar's main responsibility isn't to protect the feelings of the attorney or empathize with him. It's to protect the citizens of Ohio from unfit attorneys from practicing in the state.




He might be fiscally irresponsible but that doesn't mean he will make an awful attorney. I realize he has failed the bar multiple times as well, but that does not necessarily mean he will be an awful lawyer either. This thought that all attorney's are angels is ridiculous. Attorneys' lives are just as messed up as the next group, that doesn't make them incompetent in their professional lives.


I agree

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TommyK
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Re: Just when you thought it couldn't get any worse

Postby TommyK » Tue Feb 15, 2011 12:25 am

donzoli wrote:
He might be fiscally irresponsible but that doesn't mean he will make an awful attorney. I realize he has failed the bar multiple times as well, but that does not necessarily mean he will be an awful lawyer either. This thought that all attorney's are angels is ridiculous. Attorneys' lives are just as messed up as the next group, that doesn't make them incompetent in their professional lives.


Here you go:
An applicant to the Ohio bar must prove by clear and convincing
evidence that he or she “possesses the requisite character, fitness, and moral
qualifications for admission to the practice of law.” Gov.Bar R. I(11)(D)(1). The
applicant’s record must justify “the trust of clients, adversaries, courts, and others
with respect to the professional duties owed to them.” Gov.Bar R. I(11)(D)(3).
Necessarily, “[a] record manifesting a significant deficiency in the honesty,
trustworthiness, diligence, or reliability of an applicant may constitute a basis for
disapproval of the applicant.”


He has clearly demonstrated a long record of deficiency in diligence, reliability, and trustworthiness.

I'm not sure how this is even a question at this point. Griffin demonstrate considerable lack of diligence in petitioning for bankruptcy, lack of reliability in making the necessary minimum payments on his credit cards, and trustworthiness for agreeing to take on consumer debt and not doing the things necessary to make an attempt to pay it back.

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TommyK
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Re: Just when you thought it couldn't get any worse

Postby TommyK » Tue Feb 15, 2011 12:27 am

peter844 wrote:I agree


tl;dr

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fatduck
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Re: Just when you thought it couldn't get any worse

Postby fatduck » Tue Feb 15, 2011 12:27 am

obviously you can look at any individual case and say "sure, he's made mistakes, but attorneys aren't perfect, they should give him a shot," but if you accept the idea that a bar association must allow/deny attorneys the right to practice, then you have to draw the line somewhere. some rejections will necessarily be more marginal than others. according to the ohio state bar, financial responsibility is something that demonstrates fitness to be an attorney, and i don't think they're completely out of line.

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Re: Just when you thought it couldn't get any worse

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Feb 15, 2011 12:34 am

Here you go:
An applicant to the Ohio bar must prove by clear and convincing
evidence that he or she “possesses the requisite character, fitness, and moral
qualifications for admission to the practice of law.” Gov.Bar R. I(11)(D)(1). The
applicant’s record must justify “the trust of clients, adversaries, courts, and others
with respect to the professional duties owed to them.” Gov.Bar R. I(11)(D)(3).
Necessarily, “[a] record manifesting a significant deficiency in the honesty,
trustworthiness, diligence, or reliability of an applicant may constitute a basis for
disapproval of the applicant.”


This is extremely vague and I understand it probably has to be. However, you can fit any criteria into this. Getting into someones financials is going too far. Soon they will be checking credit score for a minimum requirement.

170K is still payable, sucks but still payable. Maybe law schools should hike their tuitions a little more.

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TommyK
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Re: Just when you thought it couldn't get any worse

Postby TommyK » Tue Feb 15, 2011 12:39 am

Anonymous User wrote:Here you go:
An applicant to the Ohio bar must prove by clear and convincing
evidence that he or she “possesses the requisite character, fitness, and moral
qualifications for admission to the practice of law.” Gov.Bar R. I(11)(D)(1). The
applicant’s record must justify “the trust of clients, adversaries, courts, and others
with respect to the professional duties owed to them.” Gov.Bar R. I(11)(D)(3).
Necessarily, “[a] record manifesting a significant deficiency in the honesty,
trustworthiness, diligence, or reliability of an applicant may constitute a basis for
disapproval of the applicant.”


This is extremely vague and I understand it probably has to be. However, you can fit any criteria into this. Getting into someones financials is going too far with this. Soon they will be checking credit score for a minimum requirement.


I guess I understand what you're saying (but don't understand the use of the anon feature at all in this situation). Think of it this way: The way this is worded, the burden of proof is on the applicant. It's not that the state bar has to prove that he/she will be a bad attorney. The applicant has to prove they possess the qualities necessary. Griffin didn't demonstrate that and by almost any definition, or however broadly you want to define requisite character, fitness, and moral qualifications, he probably is unable to prove a consistent track record of that.

peter844
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Re: Just when you thought it couldn't get any worse

Postby peter844 » Tue Feb 15, 2011 12:41 am

TommyK wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Here you go:
An applicant to the Ohio bar must prove by clear and convincing
evidence that he or she “possesses the requisite character, fitness, and moral
qualifications for admission to the practice of law.” Gov.Bar R. I(11)(D)(1). The
applicant’s record must justify “the trust of clients, adversaries, courts, and others
with respect to the professional duties owed to them.” Gov.Bar R. I(11)(D)(3).
Necessarily, “[a] record manifesting a significant deficiency in the honesty,
trustworthiness, diligence, or reliability of an applicant may constitute a basis for
disapproval of the applicant.”


This is extremely vague and I understand it probably has to be. However, you can fit any criteria into this. Getting into someones financials is going too far with this. Soon they will be checking credit score for a minimum requirement.


I guess I understand what you're saying (but don't understand the use of the anon feature at all in this situation). Think of it this way: The way this is worded, the burden of proof is on the applicant. It's not that the state bar has to prove that he/she will be a bad attorney. The applicant has to prove they possess the qualities necessary. Griffin didn't demonstrate that.


That's true he probably did not. (didn't mean to hit the anon quote ha...my mistake)

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sundance95
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Re: Just when you thought it couldn't get any worse

Postby sundance95 » Tue Feb 15, 2011 12:42 am

So taking advantage of the rights afforded one under the law (i.e., bankruptcy) demonstrates that you can't be an attorney? I hope this dude's appealing to the state supreme court if he is afforded that option.

I mean, so how is he supposed to pay all of this debt down now?

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TommyK
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Re: Just when you thought it couldn't get any worse

Postby TommyK » Tue Feb 15, 2011 12:55 am

sundance95 wrote:So taking advantage of the rights afforded one under the law (i.e., bankruptcy) demonstrates that you can't be an attorney? I hope this dude's appealing to the state supreme court if he is afforded that option.

I mean, so how is he supposed to pay all of this debt down now?


Bankruptcy probably wouldn't automatically disqualify you from being admitted to the bar, but coming up the with plan to petition for bankruptcy and the sitting on your hands for 4 months, and not even filing for it - I think that's probably worse because during that entire time, you're not making payments and you're failing to meet financial obligations you've made.

I don't think this is appealable. This is the Ohio bar. He can reapply soon, though.

And again - bankruptcy probably doesn't demonstrate you can't be an attorney, but it does make the argument that you can be an attorney probably a bit less persuasive. Nuanced, but important point.

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A'nold
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Re: Just when you thought it couldn't get any worse

Postby A'nold » Tue Feb 15, 2011 12:59 am

Another thing that's been touched on but not to a large extent is the fact that tuition at most schools is now around 40k a year. Tack on living expenses and sticker price and you have at least 180k by the time you graduate. The problem here is the precedent it is setting. If you've had financial trouble or even, dare I say financial irresponsibility (oh noes!) AND you had to take out loans to pay for your freaking tuition, you are absolutely screwed. Not fair by any stretch, IMO.

Now, if tuition was on average like 15k a year, I could see 200k in student loans opening some eyes. Yes, I know he wasn't paying his crap but how could you on $12 an hour, pt? Note that he used his "spare time" to study for the bar when he wasn't working for a low wage in the LEGAL FIELD. I cannot see how that is so irresponsible to be denied admission to the bar after 3 years of hard freaking work and a ton of debt, which is, actually, encouraged by the gov. and law schools around the country.

keg411
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Re: Just when you thought it couldn't get any worse

Postby keg411 » Tue Feb 15, 2011 1:06 am

I would guess it's the credit card debt and not the educational debt that's bothering C&F.

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TommyK
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Re: Just when you thought it couldn't get any worse

Postby TommyK » Tue Feb 15, 2011 1:11 am

A'nold wrote:Another thing that's been touched on but not to a large extent is the fact that tuition at most schools is now around 40k a year. Tack on living expenses and sticker price and you have at least 180k by the time you graduate. The problem here is the precedent it is setting. If you've had financial trouble or even, dare I say financial irresponsibility (oh noes!) AND you had to take out loans to pay for your freaking tuition, you are absolutely screwed. Not fair by any stretch, IMO.

Now, if tuition was on average like 15k a year, I could see 200k in student loans opening some eyes. Yes, I know he wasn't paying his crap but how could you on $12 an hour, pt? Note that he used his "spare time" to study for the bar when he wasn't working for a low wage in the LEGAL FIELD. I cannot see how that is so irresponsible to be denied admission to the bar after 3 years of hard freaking work and a ton of debt, which is, actually, encouraged by the gov. and law schools around the country.


Probably will not be making much of a payment on the student loans, but you probably wouldn't have to be. How does IBR work? You only pay 15% of your income that is above the poverty limit? (not sure - outside my area of knowledge). I imagine the bigger problem is him accruing $16k of cc debt and not even making a minimum payment. And as far as him not making his payments - he was working around 30 hours / week, making $12/hr, while mooching off his daughter's mother ("contributing minimally to household expenses"). There was opportunity to get another job (and study too) and make minimum payments. At least from the accounts of this judgment, I'm surprised so many people are jumping to the guy's defense.

Edited: for unnecessary value judgments due to author being sleepy.

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A'nold
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Re: Just when you thought it couldn't get any worse

Postby A'nold » Tue Feb 15, 2011 2:33 am

TommyK wrote:
A'nold wrote:Another thing that's been touched on but not to a large extent is the fact that tuition at most schools is now around 40k a year. Tack on living expenses and sticker price and you have at least 180k by the time you graduate. The problem here is the precedent it is setting. If you've had financial trouble or even, dare I say financial irresponsibility (oh noes!) AND you had to take out loans to pay for your freaking tuition, you are absolutely screwed. Not fair by any stretch, IMO.

Now, if tuition was on average like 15k a year, I could see 200k in student loans opening some eyes. Yes, I know he wasn't paying his crap but how could you on $12 an hour, pt? Note that he used his "spare time" to study for the bar when he wasn't working for a low wage in the LEGAL FIELD. I cannot see how that is so irresponsible to be denied admission to the bar after 3 years of hard freaking work and a ton of debt, which is, actually, encouraged by the gov. and law schools around the country.


Probably will not be making much of a payment on the student loans, but you probably wouldn't have to be. How does IBR work? You only pay 15% of your income that is above the poverty limit? (not sure - outside my area of knowledge). I imagine the bigger problem is him accruing $16k of cc debt and not even making a minimum payment. And as far as him not making his payments - he was working around 30 hours / week, making $12/hr, while mooching off his daughter's mother ("contributing minimally to household expenses"). There was opportunity to get another job (and study too) and make minimum payments. At least from the accounts of this judgment, I'm surprised so many people are jumping to the guy's defense.

Edited: for unnecessary value judgments due to author being sleepy.

You know, its the precedent that I am scared of. This guy might be a complete sleaze. I liken this to, say, the exclusionary rule where you have to objectively exclude evidence even if you hate the person to uphold a greater cause. I just feel like this is one of those "greater causes" and that we might be headed for a slippery slope if this becomes commonplace.

Also, in order to qualify for IBR you have to be working full-time, so he cannot qualify.

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Re: Just when you thought it couldn't get any worse

Postby Anonymous Loser » Tue Feb 15, 2011 3:33 am

A'nold wrote:Also, in order to qualify for IBR you have to be working full-time, so he cannot qualify.


What the fuck are you talking about? I mean, usually, when I see an A'nold post, I assume that there will be significant factual errors, but this is just flat-out wrong. IBR is based upon AGI, which has nothing whatsoever to do with employment status. An AGI of $0 qualifies for IBR.

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A'nold
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Re: Just when you thought it couldn't get any worse

Postby A'nold » Tue Feb 15, 2011 3:48 am

Anonymous Loser wrote:
A'nold wrote:Also, in order to qualify for IBR you have to be working full-time, so he cannot qualify.


What the fuck are you talking about? I mean, usually, when I see an A'nold post, I assume that there will be significant factual errors, but this is just flat-out wrong. IBR is based upon AGI, which has nothing whatsoever to do with employment status. An AGI of $0 qualifies for IBR.

You have to work full-time to get the loan forgiveness. Because it would really be worthwhile to be on IBR and NOT have your loans forgiven. I mean, just think how easy it would be to repay that 170k when it turns into 350k :roll:

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RickyRoe
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Re: Just when you thought it couldn't get any worse

Postby RickyRoe » Tue Feb 15, 2011 4:40 am

I'm no expert, but I'm guessing you don't have to be working full time at a legal profession to get IBR. He could keep working part-time at the PD's office and get a full time night job. Wait tables, work the counter at 7/11, I don't care what he does for a second job but he has almost $200 K in debt he borrowed and promised to pay back. Millions of Americans work 2 jobs. Him working a part-time job at $12 an hour is not a good faith effort to pay back his loans. The Ohio Bar obviously had reason to believe that his plan all along was to just not pay if he didn't get that BigLaw job and that is why they denied him admittance.

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RickyRoe
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Re: Just when you thought it couldn't get any worse

Postby RickyRoe » Tue Feb 15, 2011 4:56 am

Also it should be noted that he was denied his application to the February 2010 bar exam but specifically permitted him to reapply for the February 2011 exam. This gives him a full year to get his shit in order. They are not telling him that he can't still be a lawyer, they had just had enough with this kind of immaturity from a middle-aged man.

As far as $12 not being enough to pay off the loans I beg to differ. If you read the report, he lived with his baby's momma and "contributes minimally to household expenses". $12 an hour for 24-32 hours a week means he makes between $1,152 and $1,536 a month before taxes. Not much money except when you consider that he has very few other expenses to speak of. If he missed a payment or two that would be one thing, but the guy has NEVER mad a payment and hadn't made a credit card payment in years. I see no good faith effort to pay his debts, people like him make me think we should bring back debtors prisons.

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Re: Just when you thought it couldn't get any worse

Postby Fark-o-vision » Tue Feb 15, 2011 6:47 am

Right. a lot of people on here haven't really had to deal with the world, or anything that can upset it. They think they have everything planned out and anyone who encounters a rough patch is an asshole who had it coming.

In real life, you can't plan for everything. You do your best and for the lucky few of us, those plans work out all right. For the middle of the pack, catastrophe strikes and you do your best. For the unlucky ones maybe they're never able to get back out.

I've had credit issues that I've discussed here and I even took last year off to sort them out. But, I had the support of family, friends, and a good education to back me up. Things not everyone has, and things not everyone can get.

As far as the naive opinion that you should "work with creditors" I mean, you have to give it a shot. A lot of the time, though, they understand that they can leach for seven years. Why give you any ground when they know they hold a decade of your adult life hostage? Even if they settle it doesn't do you a lot of good.

Credit issues are complex. They can be unexpected and they can be devastating. We shouldn't blast this guy for that.

However:

1) I've read a few stories. Two issues seemed to concern the court. 1) the bankruptcy was not filed as promised.

2) He seemed to exhibit an unwillingness to seek more gainful employment.

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Re: Just when you thought it couldn't get any worse

Postby seriousstudenttt » Tue Feb 15, 2011 9:47 am

Not his fault someone was dumb enough to give him 170k in student loans.

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kswiss
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Re: Just when you thought it couldn't get any worse

Postby kswiss » Wed Feb 16, 2011 4:49 am

I'm pretty sure that with IBR he could be paying 0 a month if he just filed the paperwork. Once your income falls below a certain level your payment is 0.

Not knowing all the facts, this guys seems like he's just irresponsible. I understand the credit card debt and the school debt. I have tons myself, and I haven't been perfect with money. But at the time that you are applying to the bar you should have your shit in order. That doesn't mean that you are making huge payments, but it might be helpful to present as evidence the correspondence that you've had with your creditors showing how you are trying to make it work.

I bet if dude had just shown letters where he asked for smaller payments or something with each of his creditors, he would have got in even if they were denied.

The court actually seems pretty reasonable to me. They are allowing him to get his shit back together and re-apply next year. That implies that despite all of his irresponsibility thus far they think it is possible that he will have the requisite character and fitness within a year. That seems like a lot of latitude considering that the dude has received a default judgement within the last year.

I think that more than anything shows the dudes competency as an attorney. Default means you didn't even contest it or show up to court. That doesn't bear well on his personal responsibility.




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