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Richard, Attorney
Category: Business Law
Satisfied Customers: 55463
Experience:  32 years of experience practicing law and a businessman.
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I have a roofing company and I was hired by a contractor. He

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I have a roofing company and I was hired by a contractor. He is wanting to void the final payments which is 20% of the full amount. His reason is that some of the job was not completed. We made a written contract and everything on that contract was completed. On the last invoice, it was agreed that 10% would be paid when drains were installed which they were, and the other 10% were gonna be paid when the inspection passed, which being a government bldg. I'm sure it did. Now, he is not gonna pay the 10% of the drains unless we sign a release lien form and let him stay with the remaining 10%. He also used a punch list as an excuse and after attempting to attain an official inspector's punch list he refused to send us one. He has tried to this before to try to keep the 20% and now he is trying to keep 10%, what legal process can I follow.
Welcome! My goal is to do my very best to understand your situation and to provide a full and complete answer for you.

Good evening. First, do not sign the lien release form. Second, file suit against him for the payment owed you. This will give you the leverage and collection options you need. Once the suit is filed and a judgment awarded, which based on your facts it will be, you become a judgment creditor, and if the losing party doesn’t then pay the judgment, you can have the sheriff serve a summons on the losing party for a debtor examination. That forces the losing party to meet the judgment creditor in court and answer questions under oath about the losing party's assets. After that information is obtained, the judgment creditor has the power to attach bank accounts, and/or have the sheriff seize other property to satisfy the judgment.

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Customer: replied 4 years ago.

At any point will I need to have a lawyer present?

If your claim is for $10,000 or less, you can file this in small claims court which are designed for use without a lawyer. If your claim is more than that, you can bring your suit in a civil district court...these typically involve a lawyer, but you are perfectly entitled to represent yourself without a lawyer.
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

He has paid 10% which was for the drain installation. And the other 10% is when the inspection passes.

Now he is saying that the inspection did not pass and doesn't want to pay us.

I know for a fact that he is lying about it, since everything was done to the tee by my company. Do I have the right to find out for myself whether or not the inspection really pass?


Also, if it didn't pass due to the section of the work he and his company completed, should I be penalized for his mistakes?

Thanks for following up. Yes, you can call the inspector and inquire personally. You can also demand evidence be produced as part of your suit. And, no, you can not be penalized at all if the inspection was not obtained due to his mistakes not yours. And, if there is no inspections due to the contractor rather than your work, you would still be entitled to be paid because the contractor is not allowed to benefit from the contractor's own negligence.
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Thank you so much for the positive rating! I appreciate having had the opportunity to serve you! If I can be of assistance to you in the future, just look me up and I will be happy to help!