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I installed a sewer line for a bank. their contractor is…

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I installed a sewer line...
I installed a sewer line for a bank. their contractor is disputing the charges. I have defended my charges and have a contract. do I have a right to shut down the line until payment is made/settled.
Submitted: 6 years ago.Category: Legal
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Answered in 1 hour by:
4/23/2012
Lawyer: Legalease, Lawyer replied 6 years ago
Legalease
Legalease, Lawyer
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 16,440
Experience: 15 years exp all aspects of general law
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Hello there

No, you cannot shut off the sewer line. If you do that you are setting yourself up for a lawsuit from the bank. As a subcontractor in PA, you have 90 days to place a mechanic's lien on the property for payment of your invoices -- you should contact a local attorney to complete the lien paperwork and get it on record at the county registry of deeds against the property as soon as possible. Once your attorney notifies the bank that there is a lien on the property, the bank will put some serious pressure on the general contractor to pay your invoice so that the lien can be removed. If your invoice is not paid at that point then you can actually file foreclosure proceeedings against the bank building and if it gets that far, I am sure that you will collect your money. If you have gone beyond the time frame to file a mechanic's lien by statute then the only thing you can do is take the general contractor to court -- either small claims court if the amount is $7500 or less or you will have to file a regular lawsuit if it is more than that amount. To find a local attorney that handles construction law and mechanic's liens you should contact your local county bar association and ask for referrals to such a specialist in those areas -- they should provide you with several names and you can talk to a few and go from there. THe initial filing of the lien should not cost you more than about $1,000 in legal and service fees and you can add that money to the amount owed to you when the bank gets involved or if you actually have to move to foreclose on the property. If you are going to have this concrete / sewer installation business going forward then you really should have a lawyer on retainer to assist you when these matters come up because I have never met a general contractor that wanted to pay the full amount to his subcontractors.

--MARY

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