Also known as "Part two of WHY I HATE LAWYERS"
... So I got the balance of the purchase price at 330pm Friday. It looked a bit lower than expected; told Rahar I would go check my records when I get back.
Got back at around 9pm… and even as I showered my mind was busy planning what files to pull out, and how to figure out if the amount I’d received was correct.
Ok, so I get the files, and start plugging in numbers on a spreadsheet.
At first I thought my ex-employer had totally overcharged me on interest incurred while the sale/purchase was being executed, and composed a strongly-worded letter to the loan department asking for clarification.
But it did not seem right, so I checked the correspondence in my file AND the purchaser’s file, not sure what I was looking for. ..
Then I noticed something wrong in the letters from the lawyer: the amount they claimed to have paid my ex-employer to settle the loan was different depending if you read their letter sent in December 2004 or April 2005! The difference was almost RM3000 (in their favor, of course)!!
Apa lagi... redid the calculations in the spreadsheet, trying to capture all elements so that it would be very obvious where the discrepancy lay, then proceeded to compose a very ‘nice’ fax: finally faxed it over to them at 1149pm Friday night. Doesn’t matter if they only read it on Tuesday, at least that is outta the way.
I then composed another letter, this time to the Loan Department of my ex-employer, providing them a copy of my fax to the lawyer, and asking them to verify the amount they received. Unfortunately I do not have their fax#, so looks like first thing Tuesday morning I will be making my way to ‘work’ to deliver the letter by hand.
But you may be wondering just WHY this is getting me all pissed off: well, here’s the ultimate proof of the dishonesty, cunning and slyness of lawyers: I just figured out what that discrepancy is all about!
Get this: I actually did not need to engage Rahar and his firm to handle the sale; I could have ‘tumpang’ed the services of the purchaser’s lawyers, but I felt since Rahar's firm had handled the purchase of the house, it would be beneficial to have them handle the sale as well. So, when I went in to see what engaging them for this job would entail, I was provided an estimated bill of RM800. Since it seemed a reasonable price, I agreed to engage them.
A few months later, I was due to pay them for the services rendered: and they gave me an invoice for around RM3800! (actually, the additional amount is the EXACT amount of the discrepancy!!) Why the huge difference? Well, it seems that Rahar had neglected to include the legal fees relating to preparing/finalizing the Sale & Purchase agreement that fateful day in July when I agreed to have them handle my side of the sale!!!
Oh boy did I raise a stink about it (Sam, u remember me telling ya about this?)
I argued that it didn’t matter if it was an “estimated” bill: there was NO indication in the original quote that there were to be fees incurred in that line item. If I knew the fees would be that high, I would NOT have engaged them. Rahar argued that when we met, the purchase price was not yet decided so he didn’t put in the fee (which is a % of the price): bullsh*t, it had already been decided, and it was stated clearly ON THE ESTIMATED BILL!!
I said I was not paying the RM3000; Rahar said he would speak with his boss. He later said that his boss agreed to waive the fees. *Gee, how kind* I did not consider it a waiver: as far as I was concerned I was never under obligation to pay them that RM3000.
Fast forward to a few months later: an item in the news about how lawyers are not allowed to provide discounts on certain services rendered, including sale & purchase agreements. I figure whatever it is, good thing I’m done with all MY legal fees….
So, back to the "missing" RM3000:
...I wonder if this is the firm’s way of ‘silently’ charging me for those fees that were supposedly waived?
...Or maybe it’s Rahar’s way of making me pay for his mistake (if let’s say the RM3000 was deducted from his paycheck…)?
Either way, they have NO RIGHT to SHORTCHANGE me of the balance purchase price by LYING about the amount disbursed to my ex-employer.
I will not give way on this matter. They have no room to maneuver. They are in the wrong. I am gonna hound them until I get my money.