We recently had a new website developed worth over $50K. Upon nearing handover of the site we consulted with external designers to ensure all was in order. it is now apparent we are now in no way getting what was scoped and in the contract. We agree to an open source, open cart website of which we could take and host anywhere. It now seems somewhere along the line they change the build to Ruby on Rails and are intending to hand over an encrypted, unable to access engine. In other words something different to what we paid for. The MD is being completely arrogant and basically ignoring everything we are trying to state. What impact would issuing a notice form a lawyer have at this point. Especially as he seems to think he is above the law?
Hello and thanks for your question.
If the company concerned is based in Australia and their contractual obligations to provide the system you say you agreed to is clear in the written contractual documentation, then having a lawyer put them on notice is likely to be an effective step toward pressuring them to address any contractual issues.
Strangely, many IT people do seem to believe themselves to be above the law merely because they operate over the internet, but if they have a physical presence in Australia they may well be subject to the Australian courts. A letter from a lawyer may make this person realise that you are serious and ready to take legal action.
If on the other hand, they are an overseas development company, the ability of an Australian lawyer to credibly threaten them may be modest since they are geographically at least, effectively beyond the law. Ultimately, to pursue them you will likely need to engage a lawyer in their jurisdiction. Most common law countries tend to have similar laws to ours, in which case taking legal action may still be viable, but if they operate out of a third world country, taking action may prove difficult or impossible.
If you are unsure where they are located, then engaging a local lawyer to internet litigation experience may be a good first step. If you need assistance locating a lawyer contact the Law Society of WA as they can assist you in finding a suitable lawyer.
I trust the above assists your understanding.
If you have a follow up question, please ask and I will attempt to assist you further, otherwise please rate my answer so that I can be paid for my time and effort.
Please note that I am only paid out of the previously
deposited funds if you score me with 3 or more smileys/stars.
I note you have given me a negative rating on this question.
Although I try to meet all customer expectations, please understand that I do not make the law, I can only report it to you as it is based on the information you have provided.If you have a follow up question or there is anyway I can assist you to persuade you to give me a positive rating (three or more smileys/stars), please ask and I will attempt to assist you further.
If you remain dissatisfied with my efforts and want a refund, you should applyto customer service for a refund otherwise the funds will just sit Just Answer's escrow account.
In any event, good luck.
DISCLAIMER: Answers from Experts on JustAnswer are not substitutes for the advice of an attorney. JustAnswer is a public forum and questions and responses are not private or confidential or protected by the attorney-client privilege. The Expert above is not your attorney, and the response above is not legal advice. You should not read this response to propose specific action or address specific circumstances, but only to give you a sense of general principles of law that might affect the situation you describe. Application of these general principles to particular circumstances must be done by a lawyer who has spoken with you in confidence, learned all relevant information, and explored various options. Before acting on these general principles, you should hire a lawyer licensed to practice law in the jurisdiction to which your question pertains.
The responses above are from individual Experts, not JustAnswer. The site and services are provided “as is”. To view the verified credential of an Expert, click on the “Verified” symbol in the Expert’s profile. This site is not for emergency questions which should be directed immediately by telephone or in-person to qualified professionals. Please carefully read the Terms of Service (last updated February 8, 2012).