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#1
First off, a little background information. I am 17 and am the "leader" of a band I started in freshman year. Recently, we had to kick out our bassist for personal reasons. He has played with us for 3 years, and naturally, he was a little pissed off. So he decides to demand his money back for the things he contributed to the band. I gave him 80$ for some speaker stands he bought that I never paid him back for, and 50$ for his contribution towards paying for some tshirt designs.

But then he demands more for a PA we bought 3 years ago as a band. All four of us paid $275 each, and he is demanding 200$. I think this is ridiculous, considering that it is the BAND'S PA, and no one person should own part of it. It belongs to the band. Plus, it as an old and used PA now, and I wouldn't be able to get nearly as much as we paid for it if I tried to sell it. We also practice at my house instead of at a studio, which saved him ****loads of money. This PA was paid for with my mom's credit card, and we paid her monthly installments over the course of 6 months.

He decides to completely ignore all these reasons and go crying to his dad (this is a 17 year old as well), who then proceeds to try and get my parents involved in this. I have told my parents to tell his dad to contact me if he wants to negotiate, but I will not go to him as I have already explained everything to his son.

Any suggestions on what I should do? Is there any legal action his dad can take? Am I making the right decision by not paying him back for the PA? I have already given him 140$ which is more than enough in my opinion.

Thanks guys.
#3
Good. That was the main thing I was afraid of, mainly because his dad is ****ing ridiculous.
#4
three against one even if he did take you to court he would get 1/4 of the money for it not including depreciation.
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#5
Well, you should never say "Its owned by 'THE BAND'"...it is impossible, if the band breaks up, that equipment will go to someone....The only money he should be reimbursed for 75% of what he put into it, the rest went to depreciation of the items. So if the PA was 275 and you each put in equal share (68 if there are 4 of you), so give him 52$ for that, and do every piece of equipment you have this way. Dont let him push you into things like "Well, I bought you wall pizza that one time!"..that stuff is bs...just worry about the hardware & major investments.
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#6
If you each kicked in $275 then you should still give him some money. You said it belonged to the band. Well he was a part of the band so it was part his. Think of it like a business, you are going to need to buy him out for any contributions that he made.

Granted you can probably get away without causing too much trouble but that's a douchebag move and you are only going to create a bad reputation for yourselves.
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#7
He paid for it, you kicked him out and he's no longer going to get to use it anymore. Don't be a dick, give him his money. If I were in his position I would be asking for my full $275 back.
#9
We've already given him 140$ though. And shouldn't we factor in the part about him practicing at my house? We could have charged him, or practiced at a studio. We made at least 50 bucks each from all the shows we've played. And the PA is three years old! I don't understand the logic in paying him 75% of what he paid when I wouldn't be able to sell the PA for half of its original price. If anything, it should be like 25%, and that is cancelled out by what he saved by practicing at my house.
#10
Practicing at your house doesn't count towards saving money. Yeah, it's more convenient than renting a place, but its your house. Nothing special, just a house.
Why did you have to kick him out?
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#11
As a previous poster as said, it is all about business. Should you be paying this guy out for money he put into the band (business)? Absolutely.

Jump onto ebay or craigslist and find out the market value of the PA secondhand. Then pay him out 25% of that. It is the only fair thing to do and you will get a rep for treating band members well. This could be gold for you in the future.
#12
He wasn't contributing at all. He would come to practice and not say a word. He didn't seem into our music it all, and it was bringing us down a lot. And his dad was waay overbearing. We would play shows, and he would make the promoters hate us. It was ridiculous.

And this is not a business venture, so why should we treat it like one? We payed for a PA for the band as an entity, not so each person owns a part of it.

I know this perspective has no merit in a legal sense, but it seems right on a moral standpoint.

I also don't have the money. I gave him 140$! ****! Maybe its just cause I'm young, but that seems like a ****ing generous amount for high school band drama.
#13
Quote by Chasepw133
you obviously didn't read his post ^


Elaborate?
#14
Well, if he caused a detrimental effect on your band, both through his and his fathers actions, then yes, the $140 you gave him is enough. Explain to him what he and his father were doing and how it was causing the band to lose fans and venues.
Gear:
Agile Ash RB 828
Schecter C-7 (old 90s style headstock)
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Pod HD300
#16
Whether you like it or not, a band becomes a business venture when money starts getting co-mingled, and you get paid for playing.

This is what contracts are for. I know you're young, but this is just the beginning. If you really want to get into it, and really lead a band, you're going to have to deal with contracts. If a label wants to sign you, if the band is going to share expenses, play a gig for X-$s, share copyrights, etc..., you have to make things clear, and fair. If you really think you can just "wing" it, maybe you can, but I couldn't, nor can most. This advice is for the future.

Okay, reality! You're 17! Get past it as quickly as you can. What are they going to do? Sue you? What can they get? You're getting punk'd. Be more careful next time.
#17
Quote by Fall of Math
He wasn't contributing at all. He would come to practice and not say a word. He didn't seem into our music it all, and it was bringing us down a lot. And his dad was waay overbearing. We would play shows, and he would make the promoters hate us. It was ridiculous.

And this is not a business venture, so why should we treat it like one? We payed for a PA for the band as an entity, not so each person owns a part of it.

I know this perspective has no merit in a legal sense, but it seems right on a moral standpoint.

I also don't have the money. I gave him 140$! ****! Maybe its just cause I'm young, but that seems like a ****ing generous amount for high school band drama.


here's the thing... you can't justify not paying for the PA because it's "for the band" since you already gave him money for other stuff (speaker stands and shirts) that were also "for the band." plus, as was said, if the whole band split up, SOMEONE would get that gear, and then everyone else would have paid for it but have no ownership.

tell him that if he wants the money, you'll pay back his 1/4 of the PA, minus depreciation, at the same rate as you guys paid YOUR mom back for it. ie: if he paid your mom 20 bucks a month, the band now pays him 20 bucks a month until the debt is gone.

it's unpleasant, but if you don't wanna be a hypocrite AND you want this guy out of your hair, you've gotta pay him.

another option, if it won't ruin the effectiveness of the PA, is just to give him back just HIS monitor and a speaker cable, and tell him to have a coke and a smile and shut the **** up.
#18
Quote by Chasepw133
he only paid for 25% of it.


Quote by Fall of Math
But then he demands more for a PA we bought 3 years ago as a band. All four of us paid $275 each, and he is demanding 200$. I think this is ridiculous, considering that it is the BAND'S PA, and no one person should own part of it.


What?
#19
if he takes you to courtand loses he loses much more than he wanted from you and I doubt that he would risk that, and if he does he won't win.
#20
Quote by Fall of Math
First off, a little background information. I am 17 and am the "leader" of a band I started in freshman year. Recently, we had to kick out our bassist for personal reasons. He has played with us for 3 years, and naturally, he was a little pissed off. So he decides to demand his money back for the things he contributed to the band. I gave him 80$ for some speaker stands he bought that I never paid him back for, and 50$ for his contribution towards paying for some tshirt designs.

But then he demands more for a PA we bought 3 years ago as a band. All four of us paid $275 each, and he is demanding 200$. I think this is ridiculous, considering that it is the BAND'S PA, and no one person should own part of it. It belongs to the band. Plus, it as an old and used PA now, and I wouldn't be able to get nearly as much as we paid for it if I tried to sell it. We also practice at my house instead of at a studio, which saved him ****loads of money. This PA was paid for with my mom's credit card, and we paid her monthly installments over the course of 6 months.

He decides to completely ignore all these reasons and go crying to his dad (this is a 17 year old as well), who then proceeds to try and get my parents involved in this. I have told my parents to tell his dad to contact me if he wants to negotiate, but I will not go to him as I have already explained everything to his son.

Any suggestions on what I should do? Is there any legal action his dad can take? Am I making the right decision by not paying him back for the PA? I have already given him 140$ which is more than enough in my opinion.

Thanks guys.


What you should do is slice the PA into a quarter and give it to him to shut him up .

But seriously, you gave him more then his fair share, dont worry about it lol
#21
Quote by Scarred_surface
As a previous poster as said, it is all about business. Should you be paying this guy out for money he put into the band (business)? Absolutely.

Jump onto ebay or craigslist and find out the market value of the PA secondhand. Then pay him out 25% of that. It is the only fair thing to do and you will get a rep for treating band members well. This could be gold for you in the future.


+1 to this and to everyone else who echoed this in some way.

There are two ways of running things:
1. The band is a business co-owned equally by all members.

That being the case, each member is equally responsible for all liabilities, and equally entitled to all assets, including gear and cash on hand. When someone leaves, you either have to buy him out, or negotiate some other settlement.

2. The band is owned by one or two people, with the other members being hired help.

If that is the case, the hired help should reasonably expect to take home a certain sum for each gig they play, and may even negotiate a fee for rehearsals. This guaranteed income is in lieu of being entitled to any further assets of the band. The other side is that, even if the band loses money, the hired help still has to get paid.

If something goes to court, it will generally be assumed, unless some other agreement is in place, that each person is a co-owner of the business.

If it does go to court, do YOU want to front up money for a lawyer that YOU might lose?

And just to reiterate a particularly salient point that could go unnoticed otherwise...
you will get a rep for treating band members well. This could be gold for you in the future.


CT
Could I get some more talent in the monitors, please?

I know it sounds crazy, but try to learn to inhale your voice. www.thebelcantotechnique.com

Chris is the king of relating music things to other objects in real life.
#22
About the rehearsal space.... did you charge anyone else for the rehearsal space? If the answer is no, then you can't very well charge him for it.

Quote by Fall of Math
He wasn't contributing at all. He would come to practice and not say a word. He didn't seem into our music it all, and it was bringing us down a lot. And his dad was waay overbearing. We would play shows, and he would make the promoters hate us. It was ridiculous.


So, he was an ineffective co-owner. But a co-owner nonetheless. It sounds like the dissolving of the partnership was about due.

Quote by Fall of Math

And this is not a business venture, so why should we treat it like one?


Yes it is. Because you're coming here talking about how to split up the assets that were contributed to equally by all the members. That's business, friend.

Quote by Fall of Math

We payed for a PA for the band as an entity, not so each person owns a part of it.


Every business has an owner or owners. A business can only be a legal entity unto itself when it is incorporated. At that point, the business assets, upon the dissolving of the company, are divided among the shareholders. I highly doubt that is your situation.

Quote by Fall of Math

I know this perspective has no merit in a legal sense, but it seems right on a moral standpoint.


Unfortunately, moral victories are often no more good than the paper they are printed on... so you can set it alight to try to keep warm, because the legal victory of the other person left you without enough money to pay the heating bill.

Quote by Fall of Math

I also don't have the money. I gave him 140$! ****! Maybe its just cause I'm young, but that seems like a ****ing generous amount for high school band drama.


So, everyone kicked in the money and bought the PA. The band hit a crisis where their liabilities are worth more than their cash on hand. Your options are to either borrow money or to sell assets.

Business? You bet. The dirty and decidedly UNfun end of it, but business very much nonetheless.

Live and learn. That's half of being in a band.... learning. Especially about the whole business thing.

CT
Could I get some more talent in the monitors, please?

I know it sounds crazy, but try to learn to inhale your voice. www.thebelcantotechnique.com

Chris is the king of relating music things to other objects in real life.
Last edited by axemanchris at Feb 6, 2009,
#23
Here are a couple more things to be prepared for if you had original material....

1. If he is bitter and wants to be vindictive, he cannot tell you not to play his songs live. He has no more power over that than Robert Plant has to ask you not to play Zeppelin tunes live.

2. That said, however... if he contributed to any of the original material, he still owns his share of it - regardless of whether he quit or not. Copyright lasts for the lifetime of the composer plus anywhere from 50-85 years. If he owns 50% or more, he can direct you NOT to record it, how the material can and cannot be distributed, etc. If he owns less than 50%, he is still entitled to any royalties or sales based on his percentage of ownership of the material in question. The only way around this is to negotiate a settlement and buy his material from him outright. Copyright is considered property, and can be bought and sold.

CT
Could I get some more talent in the monitors, please?

I know it sounds crazy, but try to learn to inhale your voice. www.thebelcantotechnique.com

Chris is the king of relating music things to other objects in real life.
#24
As I think on this further.....

Could you argue that the band was a 'hobby' rather than a band... like when the old ladies down at the church all kick in and buy treats for their quilting bees? Or when you and your buddies kick in for a kick-ass poker table for your poker nights?

From what you said, the answer seems to be no. You have T-shirt designs. Were the shirts for sale? Then, by nature of selling product, you were a business. You bought a PA. Did you play shows? Did people pay money to attend those shows, or did you receive any money for playing those shows? Then, by nature of offering a service, you were a business.

CT
Could I get some more talent in the monitors, please?

I know it sounds crazy, but try to learn to inhale your voice. www.thebelcantotechnique.com

Chris is the king of relating music things to other objects in real life.
#25
Thank you for the elaborate response Chris. Thinking about this more, I know exactly where you are coming from. Let me just clarify a few points.

First, the t-shirt designs were not for sale. We haven't acquired the funds to print them.

Second, I am looking at this whole situation on a moral standpoint as of now because the possibility of the father taking legal action is very slim. There was never any agreements made or any contracts written. If we were a touring band, I would agree with every statement you have made thus far. I still do, but I don't think it applies to this situation, however similar it may be to a business.

I think our situation is more comparable to that of a church. You donate to a church, help raise funds, and spend time with it, but you wouldn't ask for your money back if your views start conflicting with the church and they decide that it would be best if you stop coming to services.

I would also argue that our band is more of a hobby than a business venture. We did have shows where people payed money to see us, but it was a very small amount, usually coming to about 5 bucks for each band member, 10 if we were lucky. But there was no intent to make money, and we didn't think much of it.

The main problem here is the lack of a contract. I am not an expert in legalities, but I would assume that this could not be considered a 'legal' business without one. The PA was not purchased in attempt to profit from it.

I'm trying to get past this objective legal stuff because I feel that this is not a legal issue, but a moral one. Legally, he does not own this PA because it was purchased with my parent's credit card, and there is no record of his contribution to it. There is no contract stating that he owns any of it. Please correct me if I'm wrong here.

Morally, I feel insulted that he decides to go to his father to solve the problem, who then decides to go past myself, and to my parents, like he is dealing with a 5 year old kid. I know money brings out the worst in people, but is it so wrong to feel like he does not deserve this money back because of his actions? Based on my perspective (again, please correct me if I'm wrong), I have no legal obligation to pay him back, and the situation turns into a moral one.
#26
I entirely see your point, and when I was 17, I thought of bands as some sort of benevolent collective too. In fact, I never really appreciated the importance of the whole business thing until I was about 23.

The difference between the church gathering and the band is that a person doesn't join a church group with any delusion of having any controlling interest. You don't arrive at church suggesting a set list for the hyms, scheduling services, deciding how to spend the church money, etc. The priest is at the top locally, then the bishop, and then the pope. You enter knowing that you're at the bottom of the food chain. You donate to it because you feel it is the right thing to do - not because you expect that at the end of it all, some of it is actually yours.

As far as getting the parents involved... remember... you are only 17. You've attempted to deal with this yourself between you and the other 17 year old. (which is the best place to start) Kids, from there (and entirely justifiably so) go to their parents as a next step when this has failed. Parents can act as 'less interested' third parties who might be better negotiating a settlement just because they have a different perspective on the whole thing. When adults can't solve a problem like this between them, their only options are to suck it up or go see a lawyer. I, as a parent myself, feel that helping my kids solve problems in a mature manner is part of my job. I'll go to bat all day long for any of my kids.... but only if I feel they are right. If I feel they're not right, I'll tell them, and then tell them to back off. Don't blame him. He did the right thing. My hope is that if it was turned around, that you wouldn't be afraid to do the same thing. Of course, the less mature alternative is to get some douchebag at school to go beat you up in exchange for a plate of fries in the cafeteria.

Often times, the problem is that things lack contracts. They're nice, because they make things, pretty well, cut and dried. It is when things DON'T have contracts where arguments such as this start. The worst case scenario here is that it goes to court and an attempt is made to determine the fairest solution to all people involved, and what might have been an implied contract.

The way bands function - a group of people sharing equally in the selling of a product or service - is a very compelling (and the most commonly used) point of view when determining how things should go when there are no contracts. Even though it wasn't much, you DID sell a product or service. As far as the PA belonging to your mom, would you all get up - your mom included - in court, under oath and at risk of being indicted for perjury, and say that it was purchased by her and that none of you ever paid her for it? I would like to think not. Morally it is up to you to tell the truth and admit that he - along with the rest of the band - contributed to it. That makes him part owner.

You can't chose moral arguments when it suits you.

I'm glad that this is unlikely to go to court. It really would be an over-blown reaction to a small issue. However, I think you need to look at it from the perspective of "what is he legally entitled to?" Usually, legally entitled to is quite similar to "morally entitled to" when you look at it from an unbiased point of view.

Maybe you guys could do another show and pay him off?

If you had T-shirts made up, he'd be entitled to 25% of those too.

Maybe have a party or something where you play in someone's basement and charge everyone $2? Loads of bands do this. (though they don't usually do it to pay off money owing to a former member....)

Or at this point... his demand of $200 seems fair to me, because he has already included significant depreciation on the gear. All he wants is another $60. Each of you just kicks in another 20 and you see the back of him. Move on, but stronger and wiser.


CT
Could I get some more talent in the monitors, please?

I know it sounds crazy, but try to learn to inhale your voice. www.thebelcantotechnique.com

Chris is the king of relating music things to other objects in real life.
Last edited by axemanchris at Feb 7, 2009,
#27
The issue here is not really a contractual one - it's more a matter of shared ownership.

There is a legal presumption that, if you pay a share of the money for something, you do not intend this as a gift - you intend to retain an interest in that thing.

So, if he paid for 25% of it, he *owns* 25% of it's value, unless you can prove that he intended it as a gift to you. As Chris pointed out, the band doesn't actually exist as a legal concept, because it has no identity.

Alternatively, you would have to prove that there was a contract within the band that all property purchased jointly would remain an asset of any remaining members of the band, should one leave. And that's not going to work, because for a contract, you need 'consideration' - something in return for making the contract. Which, in this case, almost certainly wasn't given.

Promises or non-contractual agreements are not actionable at law.

If it goes to law, you *will* have to pay up. There is absolutely no way out of that one. Your choices are pretty simple - take that risk and not pay him, or try and negotiate the amount you do pay him.

Also, the money you've already paid him is irrelevant if none of it was intended as a payment for the PA. You owe him his share of the money for that, regardless of any other obligations you had or didn't have.

**NOTE: All law is based on a knowledge of the British legal system - some details might be slightly off. However, the two systems are quite close in many ways.**
#28
Quote by Fall of Math
All four of us paid $275 each, and he is demanding 200$.

So he's letting you off with $75?
What exactly is your problem? The guy paid out cash to invest in a band's equipment in the hope that this investment will bring him earning potential in the future as part of a gigging band. That potential from his investment has been taken away from him, but the potential remains with the rest of the band, so he wants his investment back.
It's perfectly fair enough.

Look at it another way
If four people invested in company shares together and three of them told the other one that he would not be recieving any profits earned from the investment but that they had decided to keep his investment and profit from it themselves in the future, that wouldn't be fair would it?
Of course it wouldn't.
He's dropped his price by almost a third, which is fair enough taking devaluation into account, so just buy him out between you and think yourselves lucky that that's all you have to pay because if it goes to court, it'll get a whole lot more expensive for you in solicitor and court costs (loser generaly pays all these) and you will still have to pay him the money he's demanding.
Unless, as chris points out, you commit perjury in court which potentially could be very expensive if you are caught out, which you more than likely will be.
Last edited by SlackerBabbath at Feb 7, 2009,
#29
Is that really true? That's just weak... Can't you just convince him that what he is doing is kind of ball-less, weak, cheapo-revenge - just because he is not good enough?

That kind of people just pisses me off.. Greedy frickin' jews.. Really. Don't give him anything - i don't think any legal action can be taken.. Tell him to piss off, and grow some nuts..
Or give him my personal motto.

"Ey mate, if the worlds put you down.. Skull**** it and get on top".. Just not that lame "daddeh, i want my money back" ****.. Damn.. That's just weak..

Tell him to learn to play his f*cking instrument.. then he can get his money xP
FUCK YOU ALL!

666 BLACK METAL HOLOCAUST!!!!!
#30
Quote by Fall of Math
He wasn't contributing at all. He would come to practice and not say a word. He didn't seem into our music it all, and it was bringing us down a lot. And his dad was waay overbearing. We would play shows, and he would make the promoters hate us. It was ridiculous.

And this is not a business venture, so why should we treat it like one? We payed for a PA for the band as an entity, not so each person owns a part of it.

I know this perspective has no merit in a legal sense, but it seems right on a moral standpoint.

I also don't have the money. I gave him 140$! ****! Maybe its just cause I'm young, but that seems like a ****ing generous amount for high school band drama.


you have to see it from his perspective. Although he may not have been as beneficial a member, he still put his money towards the equipment. As said before, "the band" can't own anything, since it's simply a label for the band members in question.

Sure, you've paid him $140, but you still owe him a percentage of the cost towards the PA. He put in his fair share of money, and if it wasn't for his payment, then you guys would have had to put in more money each. If I were you, I would talk to the other band members, and split the price you owe him amongst yourselves, so you each are paying less.
#31
Quote by axemanchris
I entirely see your point, and when I was 17, I thought of bands as some sort of benevolent collective too. In fact, I never really appreciated the importance of the whole business thing until I was about 23.

The difference between the church gathering and the band is that a person doesn't join a church group with any delusion of having any controlling interest. You don't arrive at church suggesting a set list for the hyms, scheduling services, deciding how to spend the church money, etc. The priest is at the top locally, then the bishop, and then the pope. You enter knowing that you're at the bottom of the food chain. You donate to it because you feel it is the right thing to do - not because you expect that at the end of it all, some of it is actually yours.

As far as getting the parents involved... remember... you are only 17. You've attempted to deal with this yourself between you and the other 17 year old. (which is the best place to start) Kids, from there (and entirely justifiably so) go to their parents as a next step when this has failed. Parents can act as 'less interested' third parties who might be better negotiating a settlement just because they have a different perspective on the whole thing. When adults can't solve a problem like this between them, their only options are to suck it up or go see a lawyer. I, as a parent myself, feel that helping my kids solve problems in a mature manner is part of my job. I'll go to bat all day long for any of my kids.... but only if I feel they are right. If I feel they're not right, I'll tell them, and then tell them to back off. Don't blame him. He did the right thing. My hope is that if it was turned around, that you wouldn't be afraid to do the same thing. Of course, the less mature alternative is to get some douchebag at school to go beat you up in exchange for a plate of fries in the cafeteria.

Often times, the problem is that things lack contracts. They're nice, because they make things, pretty well, cut and dried. It is when things DON'T have contracts where arguments such as this start. The worst case scenario here is that it goes to court and an attempt is made to determine the fairest solution to all people involved, and what might have been an implied contract.

The way bands function - a group of people sharing equally in the selling of a product or service - is a very compelling (and the most commonly used) point of view when determining how things should go when there are no contracts. Even though it wasn't much, you DID sell a product or service. As far as the PA belonging to your mom, would you all get up - your mom included - in court, under oath and at risk of being indicted for perjury, and say that it was purchased by her and that none of you ever paid her for it? I would like to think not. Morally it is up to you to tell the truth and admit that he - along with the rest of the band - contributed to it. That makes him part owner.

You can't chose moral arguments when it suits you.

I'm glad that this is unlikely to go to court. It really would be an over-blown reaction to a small issue. However, I think you need to look at it from the perspective of "what is he legally entitled to?" Usually, legally entitled to is quite similar to "morally entitled to" when you look at it from an unbiased point of view.

Maybe you guys could do another show and pay him off?

If you had T-shirts made up, he'd be entitled to 25% of those too.

Maybe have a party or something where you play in someone's basement and charge everyone $2? Loads of bands do this. (though they don't usually do it to pay off money owing to a former member....)

Or at this point... his demand of $200 seems fair to me, because he has already included significant depreciation on the gear. All he wants is another $60. Each of you just kicks in another 20 and you see the back of him. Move on, but stronger and wiser.


CT


I am not choosing it as a moral argument because it suits me, only because I was under the impression that he cannot take legal action, based on my apparently flawed view of it. My perspective has changed slightly because of this, but I am still unsure of what action to take, mainly because of the asshole he has been. The way he has been acting while he was in the band and after we kicked him out is really crappy. Knowing that he does have the legal high ground now, I want to figure out a way where I do not have to pay him.

First things first. He doesn't want another 60$, he wants another 200$ on top of the 140$ I paid him. We've used the PA for three years, its old, and he's gotten tons of use out of it. 200$ seems way too much for me to pay him.

So legally, what options do I have? Can I offer him usage rights? Since he only owns 1/4th of the equipment, can I give him the right to come over to my house once a week and use it for an hour?

As you can see, I really want to fight this. I can't stand the way I've been treated, and I don't want him to get any satisfaction out of this situation. I was nice at first, and I tried to negotiate an agreement with him, but it is getting out of hand. We are not one of those top 40 bands or anything either, and I doubt anyone will want us playing in their basement. The biggest bands in our "scene" barely make enough money to live off. I'm not going to work my ass off to pay this guy back. I'd rather work my ass off to find a way NOT to pay him back.
#32
To fairly pay him back, you get the PA valued at its current market value. And give him quarter. He cant expect for more than that
#33
Quote by Fall of Math
I am not choosing it as a moral argument because it suits me, only because I was under the impression that he cannot take legal action, based on my apparently flawed view of it. My perspective has changed slightly because of this, but I am still unsure of what action to take, mainly because of the asshole he has been. The way he has been acting while he was in the band and after we kicked him out is really crappy. Knowing that he does have the legal high ground now, I want to figure out a way where I do not have to pay him.

You're making a big mistake.
Look, fine, the guy was an asshole in the band and you wanna punish him, but what's the point of punishing him in a way that's just gonna cost you even more money once he takes it to court?
Quote by Fall of Math

First things first. He doesn't want another 60$, he wants another 200$ on top of the 140$ I paid him. We've used the PA for three years, its old, and he's gotten tons of use out of it. 200$ seems way too much for me to pay him.

But the $140 was rightfully his wasn't it? 80$ for some speaker stands he bought that you never paid him back for, and 50$ for his contribution towards paying for some t-shirt designs. (which actualy comes to $130 btw)
How is this any different? He contributed £275 towards the PA system in exactly the same way as he contributed $50 towards the t-shirt designs.
He's dropped it by $75 to take into account wear and tear, which will be seen as absolutely fair enough in the eyes of the law.
Remember, that $75 drop goes across the board, so the actual value of the PA has dropped by $300 between the 4 of you. So over three years, the PA has dropped in value by $100 a year. Which sounds about right, or at least it will do to someone who doesn't know the first thing about PA systems, like the judge for instance, who's incidently the guy who's opinion really matters.
Just as all contributions are shared equally, so are the losses in value of equipment, his share of the loss being $75
Now that does sound quite reasonable, if you haven't treated the PA right and it's value has dropped by more than that, legally that's not his problem unless you can prove that he contributed towards damaging the PA to such an extent that it is no longer worth what it should be.
Now, seeing as how you are about to mention that the PA is stored at your house, well you can imagine where the blame for the PA losing so much value will appear to lie as far as the courts are concerned.

Oh, and it doesn't matter how much usage he's had out of it, all that matters legally is who owns what percentage.

Quote by Fall of Math

So legally, what options do I have? Can I offer him usage rights? Since he only owns 1/4th of the equipment, can I give him the right to come over to my house once a week and use it for an hour?

See? Toldya.

Well legally, I suppose if he owns a quarter of the PA, he should get to use it for a quarter of a week, which is easier to work out on a monthly basis, (which is how a judge will see it) so that'd be him, taking the PA away to do whatever he pleased with it for one week per month.

I don't think that's a situation you really wanna be in is it?
Quote by Fall of Math

As you can see, I really want to fight this. I can't stand the way I've been treated, and I don't want him to get any satisfaction out of this situation. I was nice at first, and I tried to negotiate an agreement with him, but it is getting out of hand. We are not one of those top 40 bands or anything either, and I doubt anyone will want us playing in their basement. The biggest bands in our "scene" barely make enough money to live off. I'm not going to work my ass off to pay this guy back. I'd rather work my ass off to find a way NOT to pay him back.

And that's your problem. Your stubbornness and determination to 'not appear like a loser'
Let's just talk about 'reputations' for a moment.
In the 'music industry', especially on a local level, reputation is paramount. It's the MOST important thing you have. It's what get's you work.
If you have a good rep for pulling punters, venues book you, if you personaly have a good rep for being easy to get along with, other bands wanna hire you. (what? you don't think you'll be in the same band for the rest of your life do you?)
At the moment you're in a band, and whatever you publicly do, or say, reflects on that band.
And the courts are a very public arena.

So let's say this goes to court. As we've already said, legally you're fu*ked.
So you're more than likely gonna lose. How is this gonna look to everyone else?
To prospective venues, you're gonna look like a trouble maker, they don't wanna get involved in doing business with a guy who goes to court at the drop of a hat over a trivial matter like this. (yes, I know, to you it's not trivial, but to a venue owner who pays more than $200 per week just for his electricity bill, it'll look damned trivial.)

So you'll have done the band damage, both publicity-wise and financially, and also let down the other band members as friends.

To yourself personally, other musicians in the area will get to hear about it (oh yes, they will) and they will see you as someone who goes to court with ex-band members at the drop of a hat, someone who's obsessed with money, and they'll make a mental note of your name and make sure they never get involved in a band with you.

As if that's not bad enough, guess what? That problem you're having with not wanting to appear to look like a loser? If you legally fight this, when it's all over, you're gonna be publicly, financialy and legally, (which is officially) 'a loser'!
That's not me trying to insult you bud, that's just the way it'll look to everyone else.

Seriously, do yourself a favour, just cough up the $200 between the rest of the band, (if there's three of you left, that comes to just under $67 each) pay the guy off, say 'goodbye' to the problem and avoid turning it into something that is gonna get out of hand in a big way.
Honestly, it's the 'intelligent' thing to do.

Quote by jimmy_neutron
To fairly pay him back, you get the PA valued at its current market value. And give him quarter. He cant expect for more than that

It does sound fair enough doesn't it? And if he can get the ex-member to agree to this then that would be the best way to go, but remember, the ex-member is an asshole, if the figure it comes to is waaaay below what he was expecting, it's gonna get legal.
But legally, most judges would look at the situation, and come up with a figure somewhere in between the figure that was paid and the figure of current re-sale value for the make and model.
But, if the PA's actual value comes in way below what a 3 year old PA of that make and model should be because it hasn't been looked after properly, then whoever is storing it is going to look personaly responsible for it devaluing so much.
That's not gonna sit well with a judge.
The other guy will be awarded his $200 because in the eyes of the law he's not asking for his full $275, so they'll see him as acting perfectly reasonably, the judge can't be bothered to dither over piddly little amounts like this (only $67 per remaining member) and will want to get it out of his/her way because there will be more important trials coming up that need his/her full attention.
He'll/She'll take one look at it, say '$200 awarded to the asshole!' bang his/her gavel and then say 'Next!'

Possibly unfare, but that's the reality of it.
Last edited by SlackerBabbath at Feb 8, 2009,
#34
Quote by SlackerBabbath
You're making a big mistake.
Look, fine, the guy was an asshole in the band and you wanna punish him, but what's the point of punishing him in a way that's just gonna cost you even more money once he takes it to court?

But the $140 was rightfully his wasn't it? 80$ for some speaker stands he bought that you never paid him back for, and 50$ for his contribution towards paying for some t-shirt designs. (which actualy comes to $130 btw)
How is this any different? He contributed £275 towards the PA system in exactly the same way as he contributed $50 towards the t-shirt designs.
He's dropped it by $75 to take into account wear and tear, which will be seen as absolutely fair enough in the eyes of the law.
Remember, that $75 drop goes across the board, so the actual value of the PA has dropped by $300 between the 4 of you. So over three years, the PA has dropped in value by $100 a year. Which sounds about right, or at least it will do to someone who doesn't know the first thing about PA systems, like the judge for instance, who's incidently the guy who's opinion really matters.
Just as all contributions are shared equally, so are the losses in value of equipment, his share of the loss being $75
Now that does sound quite reasonable, if you haven't treated the PA right and it's value has dropped by more than that, legally that's not his problem unless you can prove that he contributed towards damaging the PA to such an extent that it is no longer worth what it should be.
Now, seeing as how you are about to mention that the PA is stored at your house, well you can imagine where the blame for the PA losing so much value will appear to lie as far as the courts are concerned.

Oh, and it doesn't matter how much usage he's had out of it, all that matters legally is who owns what percentage.


See? Toldya.

Well legally, I suppose if he owns a quarter of the PA, he should get to use it for a quarter of a week, which is easier to work out on a monthly basis, (which is how a judge will see it) so that'd be him, taking the PA away to do whatever he pleased with it for one week per month.

I don't think that's a situation you really wanna be in is it?

And that's your problem. Your stubbornness and determination to 'not appear like a loser'
Let's just talk about 'reputations' for a moment.
In the 'music industry', especially on a local level, reputation is paramount. It's the MOST important thing you have. It's what get's you work.
If you have a good rep for pulling punters, venues book you, if you personaly have a good rep for being easy to get along with, other bands wanna hire you. (what? you don't think you'll be in the same band for the rest of your life do you?)
At the moment you're in a band, and whatever you publicly do, or say, reflects on that band.
And the courts are a very public arena.

So let's say this goes to court. As we've already said, legally you're fu*ked.
So you're more than likely gonna lose. How is this gonna look to everyone else?
To prospective venues, you're gonna look like a trouble maker, they don't wanna get involved in doing business with a guy who goes to court at the drop of a hat over a trivial matter like this. (yes, I know, to you it's not trivial, but to a venue owner who pays more than $200 per week just for his electricity bill, it'll look damned trivial.)

So you'll have done the band damage, both publicity-wise and financially, and also let down the other band members as friends.

To yourself personally, other musicians in the area will get to hear about it (oh yes, they will) and they will see you as someone who goes to court with ex-band members at the drop of a hat, someone who's obsessed with money, and they'll make a mental note of your name and make sure they never get involved in a band with you.

As if that's not bad enough, guess what? That problem you're having with not wanting to appear to look like a loser? If you legally fight this, when it's all over, you're gonna be publicly, financialy and legally, (which is officially) 'a loser'!
That's not me trying to insult you bud, that's just the way it'll look to everyone else.

Seriously, do yourself a favour, just cough up the $200 between the rest of the band, (if there's three of you left, that comes to just under $67 each) pay the guy off, say 'goodbye' to the problem and avoid turning it into something that is gonna get out of hand in a big way.
Honestly, it's the 'intelligent' thing to do.


It does sound fair enough doesn't it? And if he can get the ex-member to agree to this then that would be the best way to go, but remember, the ex-member is an asshole, if the figure it comes to is waaaay below what he was expecting, it's gonna get legal.
But legally, most judges would look at the situation, and come up with a figure somewhere in between the figure that was paid and the figure of current re-sale value for the make and model.
But, if the PA's actual value comes in way below what a 3 year old PA of that make and model should be because it hasn't been looked after properly, then whoever is storing it is going to look personaly responsible for it devaluing so much.
That's not gonna sit well with a judge.
The other guy will be awarded his $200 because in the eyes of the law he's not asking for his full $275, so they'll see him as acting perfectly reasonably, the judge can't be bothered to dither over piddly little amounts like this (only $67 per remaining member) and will want to get it out of his/her way because there will be more important trials coming up that need his/her full attention.
He'll/She'll take one look at it, say '$200 awarded to the asshole!' bang his/her gavel and then say 'Next!'

Possibly unfare, but that's the reality of it.


But we are not going to court! There has been no threat of legal action, and if there was, I would give him the 200$ immediately. His father is not going to waste his time and money in court. He is bitter, and wants us to know it.

And I doubt reputation is going to be a big factor here. There are about 3-4 other musicians in our area who play this type of music, and I doubt they would even take a second glance at us. It's a garage band! Sure, we've played a couple of shows to our friends. But thats about it. How is reputation going to factor in? We are all going to college in 2 years. I'm going to Boston. That's when my professional life starts, and who is going to give a **** then? This is not about looking good to other people. This is about a refusal to let an asshole get any satisfaction out of a ****ty situation.

I realize that I am on shaky ground legally. But until the eyes of the law start paying attention, I'm going to go with what I and the rest of the band feel is right in a moral sense.
#35
You aren't right in the moral sense though. Look, think about this way:

He has invested $405 in the band.

You have given him back $50 for stuff THAT HASN"T YET BEEN PRODUCED (this therefore is still his money, so you are not down on anything yet!)

You have given him back $80 dollars WHICH YOU ALREADY OWED HIM (YOU STILL AREN"T DOWN ON ANY MONEY YET THEN, YOU"VE JUST BROKEN EVEN ON WHAT YOU OWE HIM!)

You have kicked him out of the band, meaning HE is down by $275 on a PA system he will not get to use. Ask yourself, would you not ask for money at this stage (be honest here if you say you wouldn't you're either a liar or a fool). He wants $200, that is a lot of money, but is a fair request as he hasn't voluntarily left the band. The fact that he's being forced to go, is like a redundancy, it means YOU owe HIM money.

If you want a moral victory, don't get involved in the **** slinging, just pay him what he's after and go on your merry way. If you're man enough to take the high ground, try negotiating with him, offer $150 to buy him out of his share of the PA, point out that depreciation will have affected its price. The sooner you pay him the sooner he's out your way, life's too ****ing short to waste your time arguing over $200 dollars.
#36
Quote by Zycho
He paid for it, you kicked him out and he's no longer going to get to use it anymore. Don't be a dick, give him his money. If I were in his position I would be asking for my full $275 back.


Same. He payed and equal share for it. If you kicked him ouy, he deserves that money back.
#37
i agree with EL2T. The $50 dollars and the $80 were seperate cash sums that you owed him already. There is no moral higher ground for giving him what he is owed.

Lets take an exmple. You and 3 friends chip in to buy a car to drive you to school intending to use it until ye finish school. The 4 of ye chip in for alloys ($50each) and a stereo ($80each), except one of your friends is short oi cash, so you cover his share until he can pay you back. Suddenly, your friends decide they dont like you anymore, and you are no longer allowed to come with them in the car to school. Its only fair that the three leftover pay you for your share of the car. So you ask for your share back (lets say $275). But your friends point out that the car isnt worth what ye payed for it 3 months ago. So you get the car valued. It works out that your share of the car is now worth $200. You ask for the 200 back, and your friend comes and gives the 130 dollars that he already owes you for the alloys and stereo, and says to call it quits, Not having giving you any money for the car.

Thats not fair. So swap the words car for PA, alloy for t-shirt design and stereo for stands and we get your situation. Not Fair.

You paid him the money that you had borrowed him, but he is still short on the P.A. The four of ye get together, go into a music shop, and ask how much a blahblah P.A 3 years old, in whatever condition would be worth. Divide that value by four.

That is the money that the rest of the band owe him.

Full stop.
#38
I guess we have different views on what is morally right or wrong then.

Let me get a few things straight the I didn't mention. He demanded 300$ at first. I responded by offering him 140$ for everything, and told him that we should call it even on the PA because we practiced at my house and made around 50$ each for the total amount of shows we played.

He said "okay."

Now, a week after, he comes up to me demanding more money. I told him we had already made an agreement, and he just says "I want more money" and walks away. His dad then proceeds to call my parents, and at no point does he try to contact me. THIS is the main problem. I don't want to give money away to someone who acts like this! Call me stubborn, but I think this is total bull****.
#40
Quote by jimmy_neutron
i agree with EL2T. The $50 dollars and the $80 were seperate cash sums that you owed him already. There is no moral higher ground for giving him what he is owed.

Lets take an exmple. You and 3 friends chip in to buy a car to drive you to school intending to use it until ye finish school. The 4 of ye chip in for alloys ($50each) and a stereo ($80each), except one of your friends is short oi cash, so you cover his share until he can pay you back. Suddenly, your friends decide they dont like you anymore, and you are no longer allowed to come with them in the car to school. Its only fair that the three leftover pay you for your share of the car. So you ask for your share back (lets say $275). But your friends point out that the car isnt worth what ye payed for it 3 months ago. So you get the car valued. It works out that your share of the car is now worth $200. You ask for the 200 back, and your friend comes and gives the 130 dollars that he already owes you for the alloys and stereo, and says to call it quits, Not having giving you any money for the car.

Thats not fair. So swap the words car for PA, alloy for t-shirt design and stereo for stands and we get your situation. Not Fair.

You paid him the money that you had borrowed him, but he is still short on the P.A. The four of ye get together, go into a music shop, and ask how much a blahblah P.A 3 years old, in whatever condition would be worth. Divide that value by four.

That is the money that the rest of the band owe him.

Full stop.


That is looking at it completely objectively though. What if the guy pulls a bunch of crap, sleeps with one of your girlfriends, and starts causing trouble while you're driving? You tell him he can't use the car anymore, make a deal with him and pay him off for the stuff you owe him, he agrees, and then comes back later demanding more money. He also tries going around you using a third party in attempt to get more money. Would you pay him then?

Sure, it may be fair to still pay him back, but does it feel right? Not to me.
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