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Dwayne B.
Dwayne B., Attorney
Category: Real Estate Law
Satisfied Customers: 32750
Experience:  Began practicing law in 1992
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Paid roofing company to repair my roof and water damage on

Customer Question

Paid roofing company to repair my roof and water damage on the inside of the house for ceiling and walls. I gave them half of money to purchase materials and start the roof repair. They have not did anything to my roof and they have come in started on the ceiling and walls and the quality of work was done poorly. I called them when were they going to start on the roof, they replied that they are not going to do the job and is going to keep the 1/2 of the deposit that was paid that was given to them for roofing materials.
JA: Because employment law varies from place to place, can you tell me what state this is in?
Customer: Texas
JA: Have you talked to a lawyer yet?
Customer: No
JA: Anything else you think the lawyer should know?
Customer: He received the payment the 1st of May and just started the interior work this week. He kept telling me he was going to get a team together to work on my roof, but hasn't done anything. He's been giving me the run around.
Submitted: 7 months ago.
Category: Real Estate Law
Expert:  Dwayne B. replied 7 months ago.

Hello and thank you for contacting us. This is Dwayne B. and I’m an expert here and looking forward to assisting you today. If at any point any of my answers aren’t clear please don’t hesitate to ask for clarification. Also, I can only answer the questions you specifically ask and based on the facts that you give so please be sure that you ask the questions you want to ask and provide all necessary facts. Please note: This is general information for educational purposes only and is not legal advice. No specific course of action is proposed herein, and no attorney-client relationship or privilege is formed by speaking to an expert on this site. By continuing, you confirm that you understand and agree to these terms.

Is there a specific question with which I could assist?

Customer: replied 7 months ago.
Can I file criminal charges against the roofer for taking the one-half deposit to purchase roofing materials in order to start the work, but never has started or produced any roofining materials for repair of the roof. The roofer started on the interior water damage to the walls and ceilings, but this work was done poorly and very unprofessional with paint soiling the carpet and bed bench and walls not completely painted correctly. There is paint overages and shortages on the walls and ceilings.
Expert:  Dwayne B. replied 7 months ago.

Hello and thank you for contacting us. This is Dwayne B. and I’m an expert here and looking forward to assisting you today. If at any point any of my answers aren’t clear please don’t hesitate to ask for clarification. Also, I can only answer the questions you specifically ask and based on the facts that you give so please be sure that you ask the questions you want to ask and provide all necessary facts. Please note: This is general information for educational purposes only and is not legal advice. No specific course of action is proposed herein, and no attorney-client relationship or privilege is formed by speaking to an expert on this site. By continuing, you confirm that you understand and agree to these terms.

You can file a police report and then ask the police to file the charges. Victims don't actually file charges, they just report the crimes and then either the police or the DA file the charges.

You can ask them to file on his for fraud but they are likely going to tell you "it's a civil problem" since he started and did some work, although not on the roof.

If they won't file the charges then you can hire a lawyer and file suit and it is possible your lawyer can develop the case enough in the discovery process to convince the police to pursue charges.

Expert:  Dwayne B. replied 7 months ago.

You can find a lawyer to assist you by going to www.lawyers.com and in the section for Area of Practice enter Civil Litigation or Consumer Law. Either of those will have the skill set you need.

If your question has been answered then I'd offer my best wishes to you and ask that you please not forget to leave a Positive Rating so I receive credit for my work.

Of course, please feel free to ask any follow up questions in this thread. I want to be sure that all of your questions are answered. In addition, once you issue your Positive Rating the question will lock open and no longer time out so you can come back to it anytime in the future if you think of any follow ups.

Customer: replied 7 months ago.
How do I go about filing a civil lawsuit which I assume means I need to go to Small Claims Court to pursue this issue, right? Also, how do I go about doing this? Thanks
Expert:  Dwayne B. replied 7 months ago.

What state are you in? How much is at issue?

Customer: replied 7 months ago.
I am in the state of Texas and I paid them $3,300 upfront for the purchase of the roofing materials.
Expert:  Dwayne B. replied 7 months ago.

Small Claims Court goes up to $10k in Texas so that's the right court.

It's impossible to explain everything there is to know about filing a lawsuit in small claims court but I can give you the basics.

The process of a lawsuit is essentially the same everywhere, with a few, minor procedural differences.

A lawsuit generally follows this process:

1) File the petition in the court with jurisdiction and venue. The court with jurisdiction and venue is usually where the defendant resides or has their place of business. You also have to look at the amount you intend to sue for to determine what court is correct

2) When you file the petition with the clerk of courts you will pay the filing fee and also ask for citation to be issued and service to be done. The clerk doesn't serve the papers so ask them if you have to take them to the sheriff's office for service or if they will do it. Just follow their directions as to that.

3) The sheriff will serve the defendant with the lawsuit.

4) The defendant will file their answer.

5) You can then do some discovery if necessary but you will need to check with the clerk and ask if your court allows discovery. Some small claims courts do not.

6) After that the next step is to set the case for trial.

7) During the trial you introduce your evidence and they introduce theirs.

8) The judge renders a judgment and a written order is entered.

That is the basic process of a lawsuit.

The small claims court will have blank copies of petition forms you can use and there's a good book with the details on handling a case at http://www.lessonsinlaw.com/the-guerrilla-guides-to-the-law/the-guerrilla-guide-to-small-claims-court/

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