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Deborah Awyzio
Deborah Awyzio, Solicitor
Category: Australia Law
Satisfied Customers: 863
Experience:  Bachelor of Laws (QUT), BIT (QUT), Family Law Accredited Specialist, over 12 years experience
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I have done work builder in Victoria, who wont pay me

Customer Question

I have done work for a builder in Victoria, who wont pay me for the work done. The house is still under construction and I was wondering if I can put a caveat or a Lien over it before its handed over to new owner?
Submitted: 6 months ago.
Category: Australia Law
Expert:  Leon replied 6 months ago.
Good MorningMy name is ***** ***** I am a NSW Solicitor. Thank you for your question, and will do my best to assist you with your question. Please understand this is not legal advise Please understand this is not legal advice but a guide to assist you.Does the builder own the house?Were you employed by the builder or the home owner?What does your contract say?
Customer: replied 6 months ago.
I believe the builder does own the land, when we did title search it came up under their name.
They have sold it to a new home owner but title hasn't changed hands yet.
We where employed by the builder.
Our contract says
" Price quoted is for cash payment on day of completion, Discounts offered (if any) apply to payment on day of completion and are contingent on our being allowed to erect a small sign on the fence or gates. An additional $55.00 Account fee is charged if not paid in full with 48 hours of completion. Regretfully we do not accept personal cheques. Bank Counter Cheques gladly accepted. Failure to comply with payment terms will incur a $55 account fee for a 7 day account and monthly thereafter. In addition to this Interest will be charged at 2.5% per calendar month on the outstanding invoice balance until full payment is received. All recovery cost shall be borne by the client, including (but not limited to) debt collection agency costs, Title searches, Solicitors fees. Other terms only by prior written arrangement. "To complicate matters, I would think the builder has several entities so the land may be owned by one and our contract may be with the other.
My thought process is this. The Builder is dragging out payments to everyone and is being sued by several people. One of his suppliers is trying to have him declared bankrupt. He is trying to finish off houses so he can get a cash injection. I was hoping to have a caveat or lean over the house so the bank wont pay him until he settles with me.regards Ian
Expert:  Leon replied 6 months ago.
Good AfternoonIf he does own the land then you may be able to do something depending on your agreement with him. Did you have a clause about you retaining the ownership of the work until it is paid?Is the builder a sole trader or a company?

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