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Barrister
Barrister, Attorney
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 35321
Experience:  16 yrs practice, Civil, Criminal, Domestic, Realtor, Landlord 26 yrs
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If you have a clause in a contract at the signature line that

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If you have a clause in a contract at the signature line that states:

Failure to contact ____________within three days of receipt of this report regarding questions with this agreement, constitutes acceptance and understanding of its specifications & Limitations.

The client receives the report and does not contact the company with any dispute with the conditions / contract with the report but also never signs the contract. Is the client still bound to that contract? The contract is for the methods and terms for a home inspection on a home being purchased by the client.
Hello and welcome! My name is XXXXX XXXXX I will try my level best to help with your situation or get you to someone who can.
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Did the client direct the home inspector to perform an inspection and provide a report to them?
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Did the client ever sign any contract for services?
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Thanks
Barrister
Customer: replied 3 years ago.


Just a Home inspection, not a septic inspection. They did not sign the contract but when they received the home inspection report they were supposed to sign it but never did. There is a clause over and under the signature line that states:


 


Failure to contact ____________within three days of receipt of this report regarding questions with this agreement, constitutes acceptance and understanding of its specifications & Limitations.

Ok, even though the client never signed the contract, if they verbally agreed to pay you for your serviced in performing an inspection, that would be considered a legally binding oral contract. In order for an oral contract to be legally binding, there must be an offer (I will do an inspection) and acceptance (Ok, I agree to pay you for one) and consideration by at least one party. This consideration can be in the form of performance (i.e. doing the inspection).
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So if you performed the inspection at the direction of the client with the agreement to be paid, then this is enforceable. If the customer doesn't agree to pay, your recourse would be to file a small claims court suit against them for breach of contract for the cost of the inspection as well as your court costs.
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Thanks
Barrister
Customer: replied 3 years ago.


They paid already but the septic system went bad three weeks later. I dont inspect septic systems nor is there any reference to septic systems in any of my reports. they now say that I am at fault because I should have advised them to have a septic inspection on the home.

Ok, if septic systems were not a covered area or system that you inspected then you would have no legal liability if there was something wrong with it. It is up to the homeowner to make sure that they have all specific systems inspected prior to purchase. It is not your duty to provide advice to customers as to what inspections they should have done. Your job is to perform whatever inspection tasks the customer directs you to perform.
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It sounds to me like they are looking for someone to blame for the problem. If the septic failed 3 weeks later, it is likely that the seller was aware of problems with it and took steps to doctor it so it would hang on and not fail. If they failed to disclose this, the buyer can sue them for fraud and misrepresentation.
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But if the scope of your inspection did not include the septic system, then you can't be held legally liable if it failed.
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Thanks
Barrister
Barrister and 5 other Legal Specialists are ready to help you

Thanks so much for the positive rating and generous bonus, it is very much appreciated!

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It was my pleasure to work with you and help with your question. Please feel free to ask for me if you need help with anything in the future and I will do everything I can to help or get you to someone who can.

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Barrister