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Alex J. Esq.
Alex J. Esq., Attorney at Law
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Experience:  Experienced Licensed Attorney
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May 4th, I hired a cleaning lady to clean my house. She ruined

Customer Question

May 4th, I hired a cleaning lady to clean my house. She ruined the new wallpaper in the bathroom by using bleach. When it came time to pay her wages for the day ($200), she stopped me and said she was an honorable person and wanted me to deduct the wages from the cost of replacing the wallpaper. I said no and tried to pay her but she refused and said to get back with her on the cost of the wallpaper. On May 7th, I called her to tell her the total. She said she would come to my house the next day at 4pm and pay me $413.00 which was the balance after she deducted her wages. At 3:30pm I received a phone call from an attorney who said she was hired to represent her for failure to pay wages and the demand to pay for the ruined wallpaper. (FYI:The cleaning lady cleans house for the attorney). I spoke to the attorney who did not want to hear my side of the story and said wants her client to be paid. The attorney is going to bill me as well. If I don't pay, she is going to file suit. After talking to the attorney, I called the cleaning lady and tried to arrange to pay her, but she said that she can not speak to me and that I have to pay the lawyer. What do I do?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Legal
Expert:  Alex J. Esq. replied 1 year ago.
Hello. My name is XXXXX XXXXX I will be happy to answer your question.

I am sorry to hear about your unfortunate situation.

Did you have any type of written contract with your cleaning lady?

Did you receive anything from this attorney demanding any type of payment in writing?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.


No written contract with the cleaning lady. She told me what the fee would be to clean and I agreed to it.


 


The attorney has not sent me anything in writing ... yet. If she does, wont I have to pay her fees as well?

Expert:  Alex J. Esq. replied 1 year ago.
Thank you for your follow up.

Based on the limited facts you have provided, you do not have an employer-employee relationship with the cleaning lady, since she is not officially employed by you, but simply does certain house cleaning work for a fee, so this situation is not related to any unpaid wages, but rather a business dispute, between a customer / consumer and a service provider.

Basically, the attorney who has contacted you is simply using a scare tactic and there is not contractual or statutory authority which would make you responsible for this cleaning lady's service fees and if the cleaning lady is unwilling to accept payment for her services and this attorney does file a lawsuit against you, while the attorney can ask the court to award legal fees and court costs if the cleaning lady prevails, there would be no contractual or statutory authority for such award of legal fees and most judges would be very hesitant to award such legal fees and also if the lawsuit is filed, you will be able to file a counter claim for any damages related to the wallpaper damaged by this cleaning lady.

I wish you the best of luck!





Alex J. Esq., Attorney at Law
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 12902
Experience: Experienced Licensed Attorney
Alex J. Esq. and 10 other Legal Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I have not heard from that attorney again and thought the matter has been dropped. However I have heard from a different attorney (who says she is now representing the cleaning lady) from the same office who left me a voicemail wanting to know if I am going to pay the cleaning lady the $200 I alledgedly owe her. There is no doubt that this cleaning lady ruined my new wallpaper and on Saturday, the wallpaper guy is taking it down and putting it up the new wallpaper again. I will have an invoice from him as well as the designer who ordered the wallpaper. It will cost me at total $614.00. Do I still owe this cleaning lady $200 for her services which were 1) Poorly performed and not did not do all that she promised and 2) She ruined my wallpaper and cost me money. I would have let this go and eaten the cost, but now that she has a lawyer bullying me, I am angry and there is not one person I have talked to who thinks I should pay one cent. Do I owe the cleaning lady money and can I potentially owe the lawyer money too?
Expert:  Alex J. Esq. replied 1 year ago.
Thank you for your follow up.

The rules of the JustAnswer.com, require customer to post their new question in a new post and to make an additional deposit.

I will be happy to answer your new question, once you accept my previous answer to your original question.

Thanks.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Glad to do pay it .. will do now.
Expert:  Alex J. Esq. replied 1 year ago.
Dear Kate,

Did you receive any written demand from any attorney for any payment?

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