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Posted: 6/16/2009 10:07:28 AM EST
I don't want to rehash all of the financial problems I've had since last fall. To sum it up, lost jobs, lost house, hit rock bottom, and now I'm finally bouncing back (with the help of many awesome people here). We're finally working on climbing out of this hole instead of sinking lower. A few days ago I go get the mail and notice an envelope from the city we lost our house in. Apparently I "owe" them. We now live 1.5 hours away.

The scan below is pretty self explanatory. This is the first time I've been contacted by them. I really cannot afford to pay this. $244 might not sound like much, but all of our income is being devoted to 'important' things, like food, housing, and utility bills. My question is, how much authority does a mayor's court have? Also, how would you personally deal with this?

Link Posted: 6/16/2009 10:11:07 AM EST
IANAL but stuff like this might be good media fodder ('look at what this town is doing to a guy after he lost his house')

politicians hate bad PR
Link Posted: 6/16/2009 10:12:44 AM EST
How does the Tax Commissioner have the authority to tell you to do anything>?
Link Posted: 6/16/2009 10:13:41 AM EST
ignore it
Link Posted: 6/16/2009 10:22:48 AM EST
Post that letter on the message board of the local newspaper. Make a pdf and flyers with comments about how insensitive and uncompassionate the town is. When you comment, imply that the town itself had something to do with you losing your house to begin with and now they're still harassing you.

Send links of your posts and flyers to the city hall and ask them if you should raise the stakes and contact other media.

If none of this gets the response you want, ignore them, and just don't go through that town anymore. They might try to put a lien on you, but for $244 they'd be stupid to start down that road.

Gilt/Joe
Link Posted: 6/16/2009 10:25:42 AM EST
make arrangements to pay it out.


You owe it and that is part of the deal. Sorry, you asked.
Link Posted: 6/16/2009 10:53:58 AM EST
So does this mayor's court have any authority outside of the city limits?
Link Posted: 6/16/2009 10:56:18 AM EST
Did you sign for it like registered mail?
Link Posted: 6/16/2009 10:57:01 AM EST
If it were me I would contact them and set up a payment schedule. Tell them what you can pay...send what you can if you owe the money. Even $5 per month will show that you are trying to settle your debt.
Link Posted: 6/16/2009 10:57:40 AM EST
Originally Posted By SnakeEater:
So does this mayor's court have any authority outside of the city limits?


Yep, they're just like any other court really, basically the power to do whatever the hell they want....
Link Posted: 6/16/2009 10:59:27 AM EST
If you really do lack funds, why not try to talk to your local legal aid to see what your options are?
Link Posted: 6/16/2009 11:04:42 AM EST

Originally Posted By Partisan:
Did you sign for it like registered mail?

No, it came regular mail.

Link Posted: 6/16/2009 11:09:31 AM EST
I'm sure if you ignore the Order they will end up with a Default Judgment that will eventually go through normal collection channels (lien, levy, garnishment).
Link Posted: 6/16/2009 11:12:36 AM EST
You should go, if they are dicks enough to issue the Order To Appear they are dicks enough to issue a Warrent when you don't show up.
Link Posted: 6/16/2009 11:12:48 AM EST
It does say failure to comply will result in a warrant. Better avoid the police if you ever pass through Monroe again.
Link Posted: 6/16/2009 11:14:14 AM EST
[Last Edit: 6/16/2009 11:16:33 AM EST by nightstalker]
If they can put out a warrant for FTA then they have some power but the wording is "may issue a warrant", so the disgression is theirs.

I would contact them and arrange to make small payments and tell that circumstances do not allow you to travel at the moment. See if you can find out if the warrant can be served where you live (out of state or out of county).

They are just treating you like the system treats everybody.
Link Posted: 6/16/2009 11:20:48 AM EST
Ever heard the accronym BOHICA ?
Link Posted: 6/16/2009 11:27:56 AM EST
So this is for some sort of city income tax? How did they determine the amount owed? This smacks of extortion, and sounds like the typical .gov heavy handed technique. There's a bunch of pussies around here telling you to just hand over your hard earned money, without any proof that you actually owe this amount, other than some fucking letter from some pencil necked bureaucrat. Personally, I wouldn't do a thing. I sure as hell wouldn't send them any money. Especially, if you now live in a different state.
Link Posted: 6/16/2009 12:45:12 PM EST
[Last Edit: 6/16/2009 12:46:28 PM EST by SnakeEater]

Originally Posted By 338winmag:
So this is for some sort of city income tax? How did they determine the amount owed? This smacks of extortion, and sounds like the typical .gov heavy handed technique. There's a bunch of pussies around here telling you to just hand over your hard earned money, without any proof that you actually owe this amount, other than some fucking letter from some pencil necked bureaucrat. Personally, I wouldn't do a thing. I sure as hell wouldn't send them any money. Especially, if you now live in a different state.
Yes, city income tax for 2007. I filed them and sent in the forms and payment way back around March '08. I have no idea why, over a year later, they're saying I owe them more money. My two options now are either to see if they'll agree to small monthly payments or just ignore them altogether. I still live in the same state btw. The deciding factor will be whether or not they have any jurisdiction outside of the city. My searches have turned up blank so far.

Link Posted: 6/16/2009 12:58:58 PM EST
Most court systems will set up a payment plan for you. If you ignore it though, they may issue a warrant for your arrest. But, in my jurisidiction, they have done away with issuing warrants for petty shit. Instead, they will send you to a collections agency, and/or but a warrant block on your driver's license, preventing you from renewing it until you have paid.
Link Posted: 6/16/2009 1:12:18 PM EST
Call them up, explain your tight financial situation and ask if they will take a settlement for a lower amount. Be nice and try to catch someone at a time they are typically in a good mood, such as after lunch on a Tuesday. If you can't get a settlement at least see if they will setup a payment plan.

Or you can wait until the warrant is issued, you are pulled over on the way to work and your car is impounded, and then try to sort it out. The only thing that can be guaranteed with that route is that it will cost you more than $244.
Link Posted: 6/16/2009 4:22:14 PM EST
All these people on here telling you to call them and set up a payment plan, or just send a check, are really telling you to give up. They're telling you to accept the city's word that you are delinquent on your taxes. I say bullshit. You said you paid them, and probably have proof of that. Call them up and tell them you're not giving them another fucking nickel. Tell them you paid your taxes and that's it. Have them send you proof that you owe the money, before you make the trek over there. No wonder this country is in such fucked up shape. The government says boo and all these people shit their pants. From what I've seen in this thread, when someone says, "Is it time yet?" What they really mean, is it time, to cower in the corner. Perform a nut check and fight these fuckers.

If I send you a letter saying you owe me money, are you going to send it?
Link Posted: 6/17/2009 2:06:31 AM EST
[Last Edit: 6/17/2009 2:07:46 AM EST by PaDanby]
I suggest you contact Legal Aid or similar because the advice you are getting here is going to cost you a lot of money. Some of these guys are living in their fairyland fantasies about no courts and no taxes are legal. You may have to go over there with a copy of the cashed check and return to show you've paid. Or you might be able to fax it. GET A RECEIPT.


It's your butt on the line, the only thing more stupid than some of the advice they gave you here would be for you to believe them. Go talk to somebody that really know. Do you really think that somebody 5 states away is going to have any clue about what your state laws are regarding taxes?

Going into a bunker up mode will not solve anything, and you need to get it solved. First thing you need to do is find out why they think you still owe the taxes.

It says to call if you have questions. have you called yet?
Link Posted: 6/17/2009 2:16:33 AM EST
Make the appearance. And make a payment plan with them. 50 bucks a month, maybe?


CJ
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