FIRST AMENDED COMPLAINT

February 12, 2024

Dale & Svitlana Ground

7830 E. Redfield Road #5

Scottsdale, AZ 85260

Plaintiffs, pro se

 

IN THE SUPERIOR COURT OF THE STATE OF ARIZONA

IN AND FOR THE COUNTY OF MARICOPA

TAX DEPARTMENT

 

SAVANNA’S FLOWERS, LLC,

DALE AND SVITLANA GROUND,

Plaintiffs,

vs.

ARIZONA DEPARTMENT OF REVENUE

Defendant,

Case No: TX2023-000113

MOTION TO OPPOSE DEFENDANT’S MOTION TO STRIKE THE PLAINTIFFS’ FIRST AMENDED COMPLAINT

 

 

ARIZONA DEPARTMENT OF REVENUE

Counterclaimant,

vs.

SAVANNA’S FLOWERS, LLC,

DALE AND SVITLANA GROUND,

Counterdefendants,

 

 

  1. Plaintiffs/Counterdefendants SAVANNA’S FLOWERS, LLC and DALE AND SVITLANA GROUND bring this Motion to oppose Defendant’s Motion to Strike Plaintiffs’ First Amended Complaint.
  2. The Defendant filed its Motion to Strike the Plaintiff’s First Amended Complaint on the grounds that it was filed twenty-one days after the Defendant had filed its response to the Plaintiff’s initial complaint, without leave of court.
  3. However, Plaintiffs would like to provide some clarifications to support the opposition to the Defendant’s Motion to Strike:
  4. Timing of First Amended Complaint: Firstly, it is important to note that the initial filing of Plaintiffs’ Complaint was made in a different court, and the case was subsequently transferred to the Tax Court as per an order granted by the court. We were awaiting confirmation of the transfer, and it was during this period that the Defendant claims to have filed its response on May 25, 2023. However, we did not receive these documents until sometime in June, and we have no means to track the actual filing date or when we received the documents.
  5. Plaintiffs have shown that they failed to act because of excusable neglect as they were waiting on confirmation of the transfer of the case to the Tax Court pursuant to Honorable Timothy J. Ryan’s Court Order.
  6. Plaintiffs therefore assert that their failure to comply with the twenty-one days deadline was due to Plaintiffs inadvertently waiting on confirmation of the transfer of the case to the Tax Court, that this reason constitutes excusable neglect and they have acted expeditiously and in good faith to file this motion and due to the short length of delay, the Defendants will not and have not been prejudiced by the delay to file the First Amended Complaint.
  7. Further to the above, the Defendant has not asserted prejudice or bad faith on the part of the Plaintiffs.
  8. Furthermore, in reviewing the email correspondence from the Defendant’s attorney, it is evident that there was communication between us on July 3, 2023. This raises concerns about the accuracy of the Defendant’s claim that the First Amended Complaint was filed in a rushed manner.
  9. Lack of Court Stamp on Documents: The Plaintiffs have noticed that the Defendant’s filings do not bear the court’s stamp. The absence of a court stamp raises concerns about the authenticity and accurate timeline of the Defendant’s filings. The Plaintiff seeks clarification on the filing dates and the receipt of documents.
  10. ACH Payment and Incorrect Tax Amounts: The Plaintiffs received a check from the Defendant for $17,200, which the Defendant indicated as a refund. This payment was in response to the Plaintiff’s timely payment of the 2021 taxes, and there were no outstanding taxes owed. The Defendant’s attempt to impose penalties and interest on a payment they voluntarily sent is unjust and requires scrutiny.
  11. Moreover, there are significant discrepancies in the Defendant’s claim for penalties, interest, and unpaid taxes. We have attached documents that demonstrate that the check sent to us by the Defendant was for a refund of taxes paid in full, and there were no outstanding taxes owed at the time (see Plaintiffs’ First Amended Complaint). The Defendant’s attempt to impose penalties and interest on a payment they voluntarily sent to us is unjustifiable and requires clarification.
  12. False Statements and Unverified Claims: The Defendant’s attorney made knowingly false statements in their communication, misrepresenting payment allocations and making unfounded claims regarding outstanding taxes. The Plaintiff has evidence to refute these assertions and requests that the court acknowledges the inaccuracies presented.
  13. Furthermore, the Defendant’s statement regarding the allocation of funds from the check is inaccurate. The Defendant falsely claims to have deducted $2,900 for other tax items owed, while the attached evidence clearly shows that no such deductions were made.
  14. Furthermore, the Plaintiffs have issued a subpoena to the Defendant, requesting relevant documents that the Defendant has failed to provide. Non-compliance with the subpoena obstructs the Plaintiff’s ability to present a comprehensive response.
  15. Given these circumstances, Plaintiffs request the court’s consideration to deny the Defendant’s motion to strike the Plaintiffs’ First Amended Complaint. Plaintiffs believe that the filing was made in good faith and within a reasonable time frame, considering the circumstances surrounding the transfer of the case.

 

WHEREFORE, Plaintiffs pray the Court for the following reliefs:

  1. An Order granting this motion and denying the Defendant’s Motion to Strike the Plaintiffs’ First Amended Complaint.
  2. An Order to retrospectively extend the twenty-one days deadline for filing the Plaintiff’s First Amended Complaint.

 

  • For such other and further relief as the Court deems necessary or proper.

DATED:

Respectfully submitted,

 

___________________

Dale Ground

 

__________________

Svitlana Ground

 

CERTIFICATE OF SERVICE

I hereby certify that on [INSERT DATE], copies of the foregoing Motion [INSERT] have been sent to the Defendant in the following addresses:

 

Felissa Bermudez

Kristin K. Mayes

Attorney General

(Firm Bar No. 14000)

Kimberly Cygan (013977)

Lisa Neuville (012285)

Shyla Freestone (026244)

Assistant Attorney General

2005 North Central Avenue

Phoenix, AZ 85004-1592

Telephone:     (602) 542-8385

(602) 542-8444

(602) 542-8371

DATED:

___________________

Dale Ground

 

__________________

Svitlana Ground

 

 

 

Dale & Svitlana Ground

7830 E. Redfield Road #5

Scottsdale, AZ 85260

Plaintiffs, pro se

 

IN THE SUPERIOR COURT OF THE STATE OF ARIZONA

IN AND FOR THE COUNTY OF MARICOPA

TAX DEPARTMENT

 

SAVANNA’S FLOWERS, LLC,

DALE AND SVITLANA GROUND,

Plaintiffs,

vs.

ARIZONA DEPARTMENT OF REVENUE

Defendant,

Case No: TX2023-000113

MOTION TO OPPOSE DEFENDANT’S MOTION TO STRIKE THE PLAINTIFFS’ FIRST AMENDED COMPLAINT

 

 

ARIZONA DEPARTMENT OF REVENUE

Counterclaimant,

vs.

SAVANNA’S FLOWERS, LLC,

DALE AND SVITLANA GROUND,

Counterdefendants,

 

 

  1. Plaintiffs/Counterdefendants SAVANNA’S FLOWERS, LLC and DALE AND SVITLANA GROUND bring this Motion to oppose Defendant’s Motion to Strike Plaintiffs’ First Amended Complaint.
  2. The Defendant filed its Motion to Strike the Plaintiff’s First Amended Complaint on the grounds that it was filed twenty-one days after the Defendant had filed its response to the Plaintiff’s initial complaint, without leave of court.
  3. However, Plaintiffs would like to provide some clarifications to support the opposition to the Defendant’s Motion to Strike:
  4. Timing of First Amended Complaint: Firstly, it is important to note that the initial filing of Plaintiffs’ Complaint was made in a different court, and the case was subsequently transferred to the Tax Court as per an order granted by the court. We were awaiting confirmation of the transfer, and it was during this period that the Defendant claims to have filed its response on May 25, 2023. However, we did not receive these documents until sometime in June, and we have no means to track the actual filing date or when we received the documents.
  5. Plaintiffs have shown that they failed to act because of excusable neglect as they were waiting on confirmation of the transfer of the case to the Tax Court pursuant to Honorable Timothy J. Ryan’s Court Order.
  6. Plaintiffs therefore assert that their failure to comply with the twenty-one days deadline was due to Plaintiffs inadvertently waiting on confirmation of the transfer of the case to the Tax Court, that this reason constitutes excusable neglect and they have acted expeditiously and in good faith to file this motion and due to the short length of delay, the Defendants will not and have not been prejudiced by the delay to file the First Amended Complaint.
  7. Further to the above, the Defendant has not asserted prejudice or bad faith on the part of the Plaintiffs.
  8. Furthermore, in reviewing the email correspondence from the Defendant’s attorney, it is evident that there was communication between us on July 3, 2023. This raises concerns about the accuracy of the Defendant’s claim that the First Amended Complaint was filed in a rushed manner.
  9. Lack of Court Stamp on Documents: The Plaintiffs have noticed that the Defendant’s filings do not bear the court’s stamp. The absence of a court stamp raises concerns about the authenticity and accurate timeline of the Defendant’s filings. The Plaintiff seeks clarification on the filing dates and the receipt of documents.
  10. ACH Payment and Incorrect Tax Amounts: The Plaintiffs received a check from the Defendant for $17,200, which the Defendant indicated as a refund. This payment was in response to the Plaintiff’s timely payment of the 2021 taxes, and there were no outstanding taxes owed. The Defendant’s attempt to impose penalties and interest on a payment they voluntarily sent is unjust and requires scrutiny.
  11. Moreover, there are significant discrepancies in the Defendant’s claim for penalties, interest, and unpaid taxes. We have attached documents that demonstrate that the check sent to us by the Defendant was for a refund of taxes paid in full, and there were no outstanding taxes owed at the time (see Plaintiffs’ First Amended Complaint). The Defendant’s attempt to impose penalties and interest on a payment they voluntarily sent to us is unjustifiable and requires clarification.
  12. False Statements and Unverified Claims: The Defendant’s attorney made knowingly false statements in their communication, misrepresenting payment allocations and making unfounded claims regarding outstanding taxes. The Plaintiff has evidence to refute these assertions and requests that the court acknowledges the inaccuracies presented.
  13. Furthermore, the Defendant’s statement regarding the allocation of funds from the check is inaccurate. The Defendant falsely claims to have deducted $2,900 for other tax items owed, while the attached evidence clearly shows that no such deductions were made.
  14. Furthermore, the Plaintiffs have issued a subpoena to the Defendant, requesting relevant documents that the Defendant has failed to provide. Non-compliance with the subpoena obstructs the Plaintiff’s ability to present a comprehensive response.
  15. Given these circumstances, Plaintiffs request the court’s consideration to deny the Defendant’s motion to strike the Plaintiffs’ First Amended Complaint. Plaintiffs believe that the filing was made in good faith and within a reasonable time frame, considering the circumstances surrounding the transfer of the case.

 

WHEREFORE, Plaintiffs pray the Court for the following reliefs:

  1. An Order granting this motion and denying the Defendant’s Motion to Strike the Plaintiffs’ First Amended Complaint.
  2. An Order to retrospectively extend the twenty-one days deadline for filing the Plaintiff’s First Amended Complaint.

 

  • For such other and further relief as the Court deems necessary or proper.

DATED:

Respectfully submitted,

 

___________________

Dale Ground

 

__________________

Svitlana Ground

 

CERTIFICATE OF SERVICE

I hereby certify that on [INSERT DATE], copies of the foregoing Motion [INSERT] have been sent to the Defendant in the following addresses:

 

Felissa Bermudez

Kristin K. Mayes

Attorney General

(Firm Bar No. 14000)

Kimberly Cygan (013977)

Lisa Neuville (012285)

Shyla Freestone (026244)

Assistant Attorney General

2005 North Central Avenue

Phoenix, AZ 85004-1592

Telephone:     (602) 542-8385

(602) 542-8444

(602) 542-8371

DATED:

___________________

Dale Ground

 

__________________

Svitlana Ground

 

 

 

 

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