The Law Frog on KILO 94.3 – Episode 1: January 18th, 2020

On the third Wednesday of every month, David McDivitt joins KILO 94.3 to answer legal questions from callers in Southern Colorado. Being a part of the morning show on KILO 94.3 is a dream come true for David, who had always aspired to be a rock star. David’s talents lead to him practicing law over practicing sick guitar rifts, but this lets him help people in need AND rock out with other music fans. Tune in from 8am-9am to hear some of the fascinating legal situations David addresses. If you have any questions of your own be sure to call in: 719-633-KILO or submit a question here.

Episode 1: January 18th, 2020

Legal Issues Covered This Week

Caller: Kevin called in because he was concerned that an estranged friend of his has been using his home address for mail. Kevin wondered if he would ever be on the hook for any debts or any other misfortunes associated with the person using his mailing address.

David: David was able to assure Kevin that he will not be responsible for any debts of the friend using the mailing address. David did advise Kevin to send a certified letter to this person letting them know that receiving their mail has become a burden, and that they should discontinue using the address.

Takeaway: It takes more than someone else using your mailing address to tie you to debts or liabilities that person is associated with. If someone else is using your address against your wishes, it is worth communicating that to them in writing. 

Caller: Sara has not heard from the father of her children for an extended period of time and has no way of contacting him. Her children would like to change their last names to Sara’s since they have little to no association with their father. Sara wanted to know how she can go about legally changing the last names of her children when she can’t contact the father for consent.

David: David stated that the law favors keeping biological parents in the picture, so the best first step for Sara is to somehow contact the father. Although she hasn’t heard from him or known anything about him for quite some time, David pointed out that in today’s world it is very difficult for someone to just disappear. If all fails trying to find dad, David provided a website to access forms to file a petition with the court:

Takeaway: If you have exhausted all avenues for finding a parent who is out of the picture, try filing a petition at:

Caller: Eugene’s kid signed up for a year of Karate, but like most kids this was a short-term hobby and they didn’t want to continue taking classes. Although it was a one-year commitment, there was apparently a typo in the contract which dated the agreement valid through 2019 instead of 2020. Is this typo in the contract enough to get out of the agreement?

David: In all likelihood the typo wouldn’t be enough to walk away from the contract, because there is clear mistake on the document. David advised that with any contract dispute, especially in a case like this, the best way to tackle the issue is to plead your case with the other party face-to-face. It is likely that the Karate gym will come up with some remedy that is fair for both parties. This is certainly not the first kid to want to drop out of Karate!

Takeaway: With most contract disputes it is worth discussing your concerns with the other party face-to-face. People tend to be more reasonable when you explain your situation and try to settle the dispute in a civil manner.

Caller: Matt rented what was supposed to be a six-bedroom, two-bathroom home for his family. Three of the bedrooms were practically unusable as the basement had been used for a marijuana grow. Matt had settled on an agreement with his landlord that he would fix up the affected space with materials that would be provided by the landlord. Matt is concerned because the landlord isn’t keeping his promise on delivering the materials and due to a dispute on this issue, has threatened to evict the family.

David: One of the first things David wanted to know was whether the arrangement had been included in the lease. Matt was unsure, but did state that there were clear text message conversations that could prove that there had been an agreement. David advised that any text messages discussing the agreement around the time of signing the lease could be enough evidence to prove that the landlord had indeed agreed to the arrangement of providing building materials to fix the basement. David made the point that getting out of this lease may be the best recourse since it seems Matt is already off to a toxic start to a relationship with the landlord.

Takeaway: Always protect yourself by having paper trails of arrangements you make with your landlord. It’s best to have specific agreements to be listed in your lease, but text messages and emails can also be helpful in providing evidence that an arrangement was made.