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Author Topic: "Private" emails/letters written by Masterfile collections lawyer, Leslie Burns  (Read 6697 times)

Matthew Chan

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I am not sure what the deal is but Masterfile collections lawyer, Leslie Burns' name has come up a few times recently and I am seeing more of what she writes to Masterfile letter victims. She is going down the Timmy McCormack road and writing things to her targets that she probably don't want others to see. And she is going out to the edge in some cases.

I think the copyright collection business must be wearing her down because she gets snippy in her tone.  I also think she occasionally makes misleading statements in her attempts to intimidate and extract payment from unwilling, uncooperative, and disagreeable victims.

First off, she has this email footer which is contradictory and fully attempts to take advantage of a recipient's legal ignorance.

Nothing in this email is or should be taken as legal advice. Nada.
Unless you and I have a signed agreement, I am not your lawyer and this email is not covered by attorney-client confidentiality or privilege. Also, this email does not establish a lawyer-client relationship between us.

However, this email is confidential and may be proprietary or privileged. If you are not the intended recipient of this email, it was an accidental disclosure of its contents. Please reply to this email to let me know of the error, then delete the email.


1.  She claims she is NOT giving legal advice but she is spewing out a LOT of arguments and legal cases to compel someone to pay her money.

2.  She claims she is not bound by confidentiality or privilege. That means she can squeal on you and share any emails you write to her or anything you tell her. (I actually am okay with this.)

3.  However, Leslie claims the email is "confidential" and may be proprietary or privileged. So, she is trying to compel someone to NOT share her emails.  I say she is a hypocrite. People can legally share any emails they received whether it was intended for them or not as long as it was not obtained through illegal means (such as hacking).

Her entire email footer is entirely premised upon taking advantage of someone's legal ignorance. And guess what, I was not the intended recipient but it is legal for me to share the information because it was legally obtained by the recipient who then forwarded it to me.

In a copy of a recent letter, Leslie writes:

Nonetheless, before advising my client to file suit, I am making this resource-wasting effort to send a print copy of the original letter I emailed (attached). This effort is being made to confirm that you have been notified of the claim against you.

I am absolutely sure Masterfile wants all their lawyers to write in such a fashion. I am so sure that is appropriate lawyer conduct.  Leslie might be a newbie lawyer with very little litigation experience but I am pretty sure what she wrote crosses some line somewhere.

Let's get to the heart of the matter.  Prior to becoming a lawyer, Leslie Burns "clerked" for Carolyn Wright of Photo Attorney for many years in "copyright collections". Then when Leslie became a lawyer, she was a copyright collections lawyer for Photo Attorney.  Then Carolyn Wright supposedly retired and Leslie took over the role as Masterfile collections lawyer.

Generally, copyright collections lawyers work for a commission. I estimate it is a 30%-35% cut.  So when someone agrees to any settlement Leslie negotiates, people can estimate how much she is collecting.  Someone settles on a Masterfile claim for $2,000 that Leslie works, I estimate she gets at least $600.  Not bad for writing, sending, cutting, and pasting a bunch of threatening emails.

But she complains about sending someone a 50-cent snail-mail "resource-wasting effort" of notification letter.

Compared to our own Oscar Michelen, Leslie is an amateur. And even compared to her old mentor, Carolyn Wright. Carolyn is a lot smarter and experienced.

And if Masterfile has to file a lawsuit against anyone, I suspect they will get a real litigation lawyer, not Leslie. Nothing we have found indicates that Leslie has much litigation experience.

I wonder what other "unusual" letters and emails written by Leslie will turn up in my email inbox.
« Last Edit: March 04, 2020, 07:36:16 AM by Matthew Chan »
I'm a non-lawyer but not legally ignorant either. Under the 1st Amendment, I have the right to post facts & opinions using rhetorical hyperbole, colloquialisms, metaphors, parody, snark, or epithets. Under Section 230 of CDA, I'm only responsible for posts I write, not what others write.

clist

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Nonetheless, before advising my client to file suit, I am making this resource-wasting effort to send a print copy of the original letter I emailed (attached)...

You've got to be kidding me...

#fail
Knowledge isn't free - you have to pay attention.

Matthew Chan

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Not kidding. A direct quote of the letter sent to me. I am conscientious to try to get my facts straight. In this case, it was too easy. Leslie wants people to just roll over quickly and easily so she can get her commission.

Not gonna happen with anyone who has any smarts and done any research.
I'm a non-lawyer but not legally ignorant either. Under the 1st Amendment, I have the right to post facts & opinions using rhetorical hyperbole, colloquialisms, metaphors, parody, snark, or epithets. Under Section 230 of CDA, I'm only responsible for posts I write, not what others write.

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Can you tell me what the outcome of your situation was? How did you handle Leslie Burns?

Matthew Chan

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I have never interacted with Leslie Burns. The letter that was shared with me belonged to someone else.

Can you tell me what the outcome of your situation was? How did you handle Leslie Burns?
I'm a non-lawyer but not legally ignorant either. Under the 1st Amendment, I have the right to post facts & opinions using rhetorical hyperbole, colloquialisms, metaphors, parody, snark, or epithets. Under Section 230 of CDA, I'm only responsible for posts I write, not what others write.

Ethan Seven

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Spunky, but not a lot of litigation.  Only four cases filed for Masterfile.  None since February of 2017. 
Even if I am a lawyer, I am not your lawyer.  Copyright matters can have serious consequences.  If you have assets worth protecting, consult a lawyer who is familiar with copyright law and who can review the facts of your case. If you cannot afford one, call your state or county bar association.

 

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