Beware of this fraud.  You will receive a phone call from someone who claims to be from a  court's jury commissioner's office. The caller will say that you failed to show up for jury duty and that a warrant has been issued for your arrest.  Caller-ID may even show a court name.

When you respond that you have never received a summons for jury duty, the caller will ask for your Social Security number and date of birth and sometimes a credit card, so that s/he can verify the information and cancel the arrest warrant.

If you give out this information, congratulations!  Your identity has just been stolen.   Your bank accounts can now be cleaned out, new accounts can be opened, and purchases can be made in your name.

Courts send notice by postal mail and will only call about jury duty after you have sent back a jury questionnaire, and then only rarely.

Never give out bank account, social security, or credit card numbers to anyone over the phone unless you initiated the call and you know who the party is.

For further information:



With this one, you get an email with the subject line "Notice to Appear in Court" and a number.  The sender is given as "County Court." The email reads:

Notice to Appear,
You have to appear in the Court on the July 24.
Please, prepare all the documents relating to the case and bring them to Court on the specified date.
Note: If you do not come, the case will be heard in your absence.

The Court Notice is attached to this email.


John Doe,
Court secretary

Attached to the email is a zip file.  DON'T OPEN IT. It contains a virus.  Note that the email doesn't specify the time or place that you must appear or even the name of the case.  The name of the court secretary varies.

Courts don't have your email address and don't use it to summons people.

What are lawyers really? To me a lawyer is basically the person that knows the rules of the country. We're all throwing the dice, playing the game, moving our pieces around the board, but if there's a problem, the lawyer is the only person that has actually read the inside of the top of the box.
-- Jerry Seinfeld

A. Joseph Ross

The Law Office of A. Joseph Ross, J.D. is a general civil practice active in the areas of residential real-estate (including landlord-tenant, home purchases and sales, condominium associations), housing discrimination, and consumer litigation. We can make referrals to competent specialists in personal injury, tax law, estate planning, criminal matters, employment discrimination, and many other areas that we don't handle ourselves. We are also happy to consult or work with other attorneys in matters within our areas of expertise.

An office consultation is generally $95.00 for an hour, though we sometimes can help you with a telephone consultation at no charge. We generally charge a flat fee to represent clients in the purchase or sale of a home. We charge a contingent fee for civil litigation where we feel there is a good claim for damages. We charge an hourly rate for most other matters, including litigation where a contingent fee is not possible.

We explain our fee structure at the first meeting and enterinto a written, signed fee agreement, which is in plain English. We encourage clients to discuss fees with us and to ask questions at any time.

WE CANNOT ANSWER LEGAL QUESTIONS OR GIVE LEGAL ADVICE BY E-MAIL. Sending e-mail to this office does not, of itself, create an attorney-client relationship. DO NOT SEND CONFIDENTIAL INFORMATION BY E-MAIL. It may not be secure against being intercepted by outsiders.

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**NEW**What to Do When the Heat Goes Off (Revised, November 2016)


How to Be a Landlord and Avoid Legal Trouble (Revised, June 2015) 

How to Be a Tenant and Avoid Getting Ripped Off (Revised, June 2015) 

Moving Tips for Tenants (Revised, August 2015)

Charging Tenants for Water (Revised, April 2015)

Being a Tenant in a Foreclosed Property (April 2015)

Tenants and Domestic Violence (April 2015)

Buying a Home (Revised, November 2011)

Selling Your Home (Revised, October 2009)


If you've filed banruptcy, beware of this one.  You get a phone call claiming to be from the office of your bankruptcy attorney. They tell you that you have to wire money immediately to satisfy a debt.  They may even mention specific information, taken from your Bankruptcy Court file (which is a public record), which may make them sound legitimate.

A real bankruptcy attorney or staff would never call a client and ask for an immediate wire transfer.  Nor would they threaten arrest if a debt isn't paid.  

These lowlife use software to make the caller ID display look like it's coming from your bankruptcy attorney's office.  They may call late in the evening or during other non-business hours, so that you can't call your attorney's office back to verify.

 DO NOT GIVE ANY PERSONAL INFORMATION TO THESE SCUM, AND HANG UP AS QUICKLY AS POSSIBLE.  Call your attorney's office during business hours and tell them about the call.