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Richard, Attorney
Category: Business Law
Satisfied Customers: 54843
Experience:  32 years of experience practicing law and a businessman.
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I am an independant contractor (sub of a sub) doing real estate

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I am an independant contractor (sub of a sub) doing real estate field inspections such as occupancy verifications, contact inspections, pre-secure inspections, etc. for a contractor in South Carolina. My pay is per the peice ($ 3.75) . Basically, I just take a few photos and fill out a short report.

I was contacted this month (July 2011) about a visual, "no contact" inspection, (which means I could not walk on the property) I performed last July of 2010. He said that I had inspected the wrong property ( which I did, upon my review ) and reported it as occupied, when in fact, it was vacant.

The Vendor, ( Mortgage Contracting Services) has decided they are going to charge us back $1500.00 of $3000.00 for damages due to an unreported leak on the property because HUD would not reimburse them due to the wrong inspection being done last year.

Well, now my contractor wants to charge me back for his share, and says he is going to withhold it from my pay. My contract does not say that I am liable for errors. He said when he hired me that I did not need to get insurance, that he had it. In addition, I asked HUD for a copy of the denial letter, ( because he wouldn't...he didn't want to rock the boat) and it turns out that they did not blame my inspection at all! They denied payment because the home was not repaired by MCS after more than 9 months of inspections reports going into this year showing damages from a leak in back of the home, and did not repair the damage until July of this year! I could not have known there was a leak in the back of the home on a no contact inspection.

My contract states that if there is a dispute, that it should be settled in Lexingting County Courts. I have disputed this with my contractor, via email. Can he legally take this disouted charge from my pay?

He is also insisting that all of his subs sign a new contract with a clause in it that we are responsible for all damages that occur from an incorrectly reported I guess that I won't be signing this one...


Jeanne Collins


Good morning. No, the contractor cannot do this because the damages in no way related to the work that you did. The contractor is within his rights to not use you in the future and it's a business decision as to whether or not it's worth paying this in order to get the continued business, but in this case, if you file a claim against the contractor, you should prevail because in no way were your actions related to the damages contractor suffered.



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