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Lucy, Esq.
Lucy, Esq., Attorney
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 27242
Experience:  Lawyer
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I am a wedding florist in Orlando. I had a partnership with

Customer Question

I am a wedding florist in Orlando. I had a partnership with a local flower wholesaler that went south. That aside, this wholesaler has not let clients know, is answering emails as me and when the client who signed the contract calls me I let them know I am no longer there. They are understandably upset as they hired the wholesaler under the belief I was going to be their designer. Several of them want out of their contract, but are being told they will not be released or given back their retainers. The contracts with these clients was signed by me as a representative for the wholesaler. Do they have a legal right to get out of their contract and get their money back?
Submitted: 6 months ago.
Category: Legal
Expert:  Lucy, Esq. replied 6 months ago.


I'm Lucy, and I'd be happy to answer your questions today. I'm sorry to hear that this is happening.

If the contract was entered between the clients and the wholesaler, that remains binding even after your partnership ends with the wholesaler. It's not enough that you signed, because you signed as a representative of the wholesaler. There would have to be a clause in the contract that gives them a right to cancel and get a refund. The default position in the law is that a contract, once signed, is final and cannot be changed or canceled. So, each client would have to look at the agreement they signed to see if it says something else. The fact that you're no longer associated with the wholesaler doesn't affect the contract analysis unless there's language where the wholesaler promises that you'll do the work (in which case, they could be in breach for providing work you did not do).

It's important that you are 100% satisfied with my courtesy and professionalism. Thank you.

Customer: replied 6 months ago.
My personal concern is that these brides are now stuck with subpar work, one bride sent me a photo from her mock up appointment and the flowers are horrible. There is a morals and ethics clause in the contract. I do feel the wholesaler is/was ethically obligated to let these clients know I am not there. However, he is answering emails as me, so the client has no idea I am no longer there.
Expert:  Lucy, Esq. replied 6 months ago.

All contracts include an implied warranty that the work will be done correctly. If the wholesaler doesn't provide the work the client is paying for, they can sue for a refund. To cancel before their weddings, they have to be able to establish that the wholersaler breached the contract. It would depend on the wording of the morals and ethics clause, but they shouldn't be impersonating you.

Customer: replied 6 months ago.
My other question is: Let's say the wholesaler does a wedding, the client is not happy, then sues. Can the wholesaler turn around and sue me as I am the one who signed the contract?
Expert:  Lucy, Esq. replied 6 months ago.

They can only sue you if you have a contract with them that was breached, meaning you were the one who terminated the partnership AND you had no right to do so. You're not responsible for their subpar work. A person who signs a contract on behalf of a company is their agent - you're not liable to the client or to the wholesaler if something goes wrong unless you also signed a personal guarantee.

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