Local lawyers will not take case - Posted by Mary

Posted by Mary on August 07, 2003 at 15:39:57:

Thanks for your reply, I kinda figured that I would have to go out of town from the reaction I was getting from everyone. Do you think I’ll be able to get my purchase price of $65,000 and $20,000 + in repairs back because they did not disclose these problems to me?
Thanks again,

Local lawyers will not take case - Posted by Mary

Posted by Mary on August 07, 2003 at 13:23:17:

I purchased a buisness from the local chamber of commerce,
they operated it as the tourism offices for the county. The deed stated it was a zoned commercial site. When I attempted to put in a sign for my buisness, I was told it was zoned residential (the only building on the highway zoned residential). I was able to pay a fee, talk to city officials and have it re-zoned as commercial. Then when the sign was being put in workers started digging up mounds of trash, it turns out the buisness was built on a landfill. This was never disclosed to us. About six months later I noticed the front of my building was sloping and hired a contractor to raise it up. The cost of this was over $20,000. I also had to have my bathroom changed to ADA code and during the removal of the plumbing, the plumber noticed my slab was about 3 feet off of the ground. I called a structural engineer and when he came to my buisness he informed me he had done a report on this buisness in 1998 (provided me with the original) that stated it was structurally unsound and would require demolition within 5 years. This report was not provided to me, or obviously I would not have purchased the building. I have been unable to obtain a lawyer in town, of the 7 I have contacted they all refuse saying a conflict of interest. I don’t really understand that but what can I do? Can I sue, who do I sue if I can, what do I sue for and what grounds do I have. I am worried if I go out of county that another attorney will not want to deal with it, then where do I go?

Re: Local lawyers will not take case - Posted by Elizabeth

Posted by Elizabeth on August 07, 2003 at 20:56:52:

Hi Mary,

I’m a paralegal, not an attorney, and nothing I say here may be construed as legal advice which I am neither licensed nor authorized to give.

However, you should start doing some serious research on your own and not relying entirely on what others are telling you (look where you are now).

I would start with the EPA which has very strict laws regarding disposal of toxic or hazardous waste.

My speciality as a paralegal is bankruptcy law, but what I tell people who attend my seminar is this:

Be the leader of your own team – if you’re not, someone else will be.

So start doing your own research. You can do most of it online in the privacy of your own home.

And definitely get a lawyer from out of town - preferably someone with a good reputation regardless of what he charges. You may be able to negotiate fees based upon the exposure he will get from what may turn out to be a very publicized case.

Since your local attorneys have told you there’s a conflict of interest, it seems everyone is in someone’s pocket. So it’s to their benefit to keep things status quo.

Shake them up Mary!

Check “Martindale Hubbell” online (an international directory of attys) to find an attorney who handles these kinds of cases. You can search by city, geographic area, or area of law you’re inquiring about.

I would assume that a good attorney would sue everyone in the chain of title, including the CoC.

Good luck.


Re: Local lawyers will not take case - Posted by Nate(DC)

Posted by Nate(DC) on August 07, 2003 at 14:23:06:

You’re going to have to go out of town, if none of the locals can help you, and just keep calling people until you find someone that can help you.

Good luck,

Re: Local lawyers will not take case - Posted by Mary

Posted by Mary on August 14, 2003 at 15:45:03:

Thank you very much for your time and information.