Legal

Ask a Lawyer and Get Answers to Your Legal Questions

Ask a Lawyer,
Get an Answer ASAP!

Legal
This answer was rated:

Can I fire a construction team? I believe they breached the

written and verbal contracts? The...
Can I fire a construction team? I believe they breached the written and verbal contracts?

The construction team and I have both agreed not to continue working together; however, they are trying to make me sign a "mutual rescission and release of contract", which basically says that I can make no further claims against them. I'm not comfortable with this, as I am planning on reporting them to the Contractor's State License Board. Unfortunately, no permit was pulled for this job. I am under a serious time crunch and the construction team is threatening to pull a permit and force a long city inspection process if I do not sign. Do I have sign this? I'm fine with releasing the contract, but not happy about releasing my ability to file claims.

I hoping I can avoid signing if I state some law that allows me to fire for misconduct and null all existing contracts. I really don't want to loose my rights to file claims but more importantly, I don't want a permit pulled (which they are threatening to do).

Background Info:
My construction company, which I hired to perform commercial tenant improvements, has been trying to charge me more for work. The contract is very vague. It says that for x dollars they will "remove lights and install light fixtures of my choice". Before signing the contract, I verbally explained this in detail, saying the removing the lights entails removing all florescent fixtures, closing up the space with ceiling tiles and installing a combination of recessed and flush mount fixtures. They did not say I was limited in the type or quantity lighting I could choose. When it came time to do the work, they sent me an email saying that they were only contracted to "move" the fluorescent lights to accommodate the new rooms. I pointed out the verbiage in the contract. They back-peddled and now said that they only bid the job for one light room (I need 2 because the rooms are large). After many back and forths (all documented via email), we decided to part ways. Now with the threat of pulling a permit should I not sign their contract. Also to be noted, I have not supplied a final payment. They are also threatening to a pull a permit should I not pay them in full.
Show More
Show Less
Ask Your Own Legal Question
Answered in 30 minutes by:
9/13/2013
CalAttorney2
CalAttorney2, Attorney
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 10,244
Experience: Civil litigation attorney for individuals and businesses.
Verified

William B. Esq. :

Dear Customer, thank you for using our service. My name is XXXXX XXXXX I would like to assist you today.

William B. Esq. :

I am sorry to hear that this construction crew is failing to perform under the terms of your contract. Just so that I can better understand the situation, is a permit required to do this type of work under your local building code?

Customer:

Hi Bill.

Thank you for taking the time to provide some guidance.

Customer:

Yes, a permit is required

Customer:

The nature of the job is plumbing, drywall and electrical (which is the problem area). They were also making a ADA compliant bathroom

William B. Esq. :

Understood, thank you.

William B. Esq. :

The threat of going to the city to pull a permit does not necessarily reach the level of blackmail or coercion regarding the contract (as the permit is required), but if the contract is terminated (you tell them that you do not want them to do any further work on the project, including both physical labor, and any clerical work, permit work, or any other efforts, their further conduct can be construed as both a breach of contract and a tortious interference with business relations.


They may have a strong position over you given the nature of your need to quickly finish construction without pulling a permit, but they are still in breach of contract, and their pay is completely reliant on finishing their work. If they did not do the work performed you cannot be forced to pay them.

William B. Esq. :

(My apologies that should read: "If they did not do the work required to be performed you cannot be forced to pay them")

William B. Esq. :

The breach of contract / tortious interference claims could be used to threaten that the contractors are responsible for all "reasonably foreseeable future losses stemming from their ongoing conduct" (such as pulling a permit without authorization). I do not know how successful the claim would be in court, but it would at least have merit.

Customer:

Thank you Bill. I understand what you are saying. My concerning is that if I don't sign their release, I'm fearful that they would pull the permit. Are you saying that if I sent them a message saying that I don't want to do any further work (etc) that would take away their legal right to pull a permit?

Customer:

...therefore I would not sign their release.

William B. Esq. :

They do not have the right to pull a permit on your behalf after you release their services. (They are no longer your agent). They can report the work done without a permit, but they are running a risk as well, being licensed contractors doing non-permitted work.

William B. Esq. :

The release is an easy way to terminate services on both sides (it is "clean"), but if they are not performing under the terms, and you send them a notice that you are terminating it due to their failure to perform, and identify any terms that you are willing to pay as compensation for their work already done ("quantum meruit"), you will have identified the termination, they can file suit if they believe they have fully performed (they will have to show this), and you can go from there (but it would require them to actually file a lawsuit showing they fully performed under the terms of your contract).

Customer:

Ok. Thank you. I believe that answers my initial/primary questions.

Customer:

Before I close out, do you know anything about the Contractor's State License Board. After this is all over, I would like to report them. I read that by law in california a contractor must not d work without a permit (even if requested). If I reported this, do you know what would be the penalty for me (if any)?

William B. Esq. :

Depending on the scope of your work, it is possible that you will end up coming under scrutiny (required to pull a permit and undergo inspections to get the work approved). The scope of this post-permitting process, and any penalties, is something that is fact specific (some work is easily visible and can be inspected without any tear-down, while other work does require this kind of work). - In sum, if you report the contractor for doing non-permitted work, you do run a risk of having to get the permits pulled after the construction is done, and paying the penalty plus undergoing any associated costs if the work cannot be passed on a visual inspection.

Customer:

Gotcha. I figured that.

Customer:

Well, thank you again for answering my questions!

William B. Esq. :

You are welcome. Thank you for using our service, I do appreciate your business. Please let me know if you have any further questions, and please do not forget to rate my answer. I do wish you the best of luck in this matter, and hopefully it will resolve itself quickly (the threat of a lengthy investigation is daunting, but a contractor's liability makes it somewhat hollow).

Customer:

thank you again!! I appreciate it :)

CalAttorney2
CalAttorney2, Attorney
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 10,244
Experience: Civil litigation attorney for individuals and businesses.
Verified
CalAttorney2 and 87 other Legal Specialists are ready to help you
Ask your own question now
Ask CalAttorney2 Your Own Question
CalAttorney2
CalAttorney2
CalAttorney2, Attorney
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 10,244
10,244 Satisfied Customers
Experience: Civil litigation attorney for individuals and businesses.

CalAttorney2 is online now

A new question is answered every 9 seconds

How JustAnswer works:

  • Ask an ExpertExperts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional AnswerVia email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site. Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction GuaranteeRate the answer you receive.

JustAnswer in the News:

Ask-a-doc Web sites: If you've got a quick question, you can try to get an answer from sites that say they have various specialists on hand to give quick answers... Justanswer.com.
JustAnswer.com...has seen a spike since October in legal questions from readers about layoffs, unemployment and severance.
Web sites like justanswer.com/legal
...leave nothing to chance.
Traffic on JustAnswer rose 14 percent...and had nearly 400,000 page views in 30 days...inquiries related to stress, high blood pressure, drinking and heart pain jumped 33 percent.
Tory Johnson, GMA Workplace Contributor, discusses work-from-home jobs, such as JustAnswer in which verified Experts answer people’s questions.
I will tell you that...the things you have to go through to be an Expert are quite rigorous.

What Customers are Saying:

Mr. Kaplun clearly had an exceptional understanding of the issue and was able to explain it concisely. I would recommend JustAnswer to anyone. Great service that lives up to its promises!

Gary B.Edmond, OK

My Expert was fast and seemed to have the answer to my taser question at the tips of her fingers. Communication was excellent. I left feeling confident in her answer.

EricRedwood City, CA

I am very pleased with JustAnswer as a place to go for divorce or criminal law knowledge and insight.

MichaelWichita, KS

PaulMJD helped me with questions I had regarding an urgent legal matter. His answers were excellent.

Three H.Houston, TX

Anne was extremely helpful. Her information put me in the right direction for action that kept me legal, possible saving me a ton of money in the future. Thank you again, Anne!!

ElaineAtlanta, GA

It worked great. I had the facts and I presented them to my ex-landlord and she folded and returned my deposit. The 50 bucks I spent with you solved my problem.

TonyApopka, FL

Not only did he answer my Michigan divorce question but was also able to help me out with it, too. I have since won my legal case on this matter and thank you so much for it.

LeeMichigan

< Previous | Next >

Meet the Experts:

Tina

Tina

Lawyer

8,775 satisfied customers

JD, BBA Over 25 years legal and business experience.

Ely

Ely

Counselor at Law

24,353 satisfied customers

Private practice with focus on family, criminal, PI, consumer protection, and business consultation.

INFOLAWYER

INFOLAWYER

Attorney

20,727 satisfied customers

Licensed attorney helping individuals and businesses

JPEsq

JPEsq

Attorney

2,132 satisfied customers

Experience as general attorney, in house counsel, SSDI, Family Law attorney, and law professor

Law Educator, Esq.

Law Educator, Esq.

Attorney

42,358 satisfied customers

JA Mentor -Attorney Labor/employment, corporate, sports law, admiralty/maritime and civil rights law

Ellen

Ellen

Lawyer, Consultant

8,238 satisfied customers

25 years of experience helping people like you.

Guillermo J. Senmartin, Esq.

Guillermo J. Senmartin, Esq.

Attorney

292 satisfied customers

7+ years of experience handling various legal matters.

< Previous | Next >

Related Legal Questions
Breach of contract EMPIRE TODAY- I have a contract for
Breach of contract EMPIRE TODAY- I have a contract for install and removal for flooring. It's day 35! The disaster started 1st day, the salsa person measured incorrectly the worker showed up- yelling … read more
LegalGems
LegalGems
Juris Doctorate
10,720 satisfied customers
I have a breach of contract issue that I believe would or
Hello I have a breach of contract issue that I believe would or should meet the Threshold of special damages, even punitive damages. … read more
Olivia Kent
Olivia Kent
Managing Partner
Doctoral Degree
1,969 satisfied customers
Recently I sent a Cease and Desist w/ breach of contract to
Recently I sent a Cease and Desist w/ breach of contract to a company in Texas because they no longer offer a product and do not have the product anymore that was listed on the original contract. I or… read more
Legal Eagle
Legal Eagle
Attorney
Doctoral Degree
7,403 satisfied customers
Breach of contract far as im concerned.wife used store
breach of contract far as im concerned.wife used store credit card without permission.she doesn't have a card and name not on account.3 names on card;me,issuing bank,and store name.if the 3 of us do b… read more
LawGuy
LawGuy
Juris Doctor
123 satisfied customers
I was named in a Breach of Contract Notice but I am not
I was named in a Breach of Contract Notice but I am not contracted with this party, I am contractor with the sub. Not sure how to proceed to make sure I get paid … read more
Legal Eagle
Legal Eagle
Attorney
Doctoral Degree
7,403 satisfied customers
Is it a breach of contract if the custodial parent moves the
Is it a breach of contract if the custodial parent moves the children to a different medical insurance without notice?From the Final Decree: The court finds that Health and Dental Insurance for the children is available at a reasonable cost to the Father....If, at some point in the future, the Mother becomes eligible for insurance and wants to move the Children to her policy and Father agrees, Father shall be responsible for 50% of the cost of insurance; Father may refuse to transfer the Children to Mother's policy if his portion of the cost of such policy exceeds the premium he then is paying for comparable coverage through his employer.Today: I discovered, the Mother now has free insurance for the children. She switched the kids over to the new policy 2 years ago. However, I've been paying about $450 per month. Which means, I'm paying $450 for no reason. Is this willingly breaching a contract with the intent to cause financial harm? Or, what would be the outcome of this?… read more
Legal Eagle
Legal Eagle
Attorney
Doctoral Degree
7,403 satisfied customers
When someone breaches a contract what happens with the
When someone breaches a contract what happens with the contract by law? … read more
Bill Attorney
Bill Attorney
law
1,607 satisfied customers
I have a breach of contract against me that began according
i have a breach of contract against me that began according to the paperwork 08/12/04 … read more
Ely
Ely
Counselor at Law
Juris Doctor
24,353 satisfied customers
I received a summons for breach of contract with Lowes
I received a summons for breach of contract with Lowes credit card. My income is Social Security, I am 64. My husband is not on the contract, but is 76 years of age and is also on Social Security and … read more
John
John
Attorney
Doctoral Degree
5,864 satisfied customers
I have someone who breached their contract by breaking an
Hello, I have someone who breached their contract by breaking an NDA and I am trying to find out if the evidence I have is enough to bring charges against them. … read more
Roy Hadavi
Roy Hadavi
Attorney
Juris Doctorate
1,003 satisfied customers
I am being sued for breach of contract by a financial
I am being sued for breach of contract by a financial advisor who has sent me an a time list of "extra services he has performed that,he claims, outside his contractual fees. He is suing me for $33,00… read more
INFOLAWYER
INFOLAWYER
Attorney
Doctoral Degree
20,727 satisfied customers
How can I resend a deed do to breach of contract and fraud?
How can I resend a deed do to breach of contract and fraud ? … read more
lucy7368
lucy7368
Juris Doctor
763 satisfied customers
I had a breach of contract with a venue, they did not want
I had a breach of contract with a venue, they did not want to host my event again despite having a paid in full contract with them months prior to the event date---i want to take them to small claims … read more
LawGuy
LawGuy
Juris Doctor
123 satisfied customers
I have a breach of contract action in progress that requires
second opinion] I have a breach of contract action in progress that requires a declaratory judgement affirming the contract's validity. Defendant claims the the contract is flawed due to drafting erro… read more
Law Educator, Esq.
Law Educator, Esq.
Attorney
Doctoral Degree
42,358 satisfied customers
I have a breach of contract action in progress that requires
second opinion] I have a breach of contract action in progress that requires a declaratory judgement affirming the contract's validity. Defendant claims the the contract is flawed due to drafting erro… read more
LegalGems
LegalGems
Juris Doctorate
10,720 satisfied customers
I have a breach of contract action in progress that requires
I have a breach of contract action in progress that requires a declaratory judgement affirming the contract's validity. Defendant claims the the contract is flawed due to drafting error and has made c… read more
INFOLAWYER
INFOLAWYER
Attorney
Doctoral Degree
20,727 satisfied customers
The attorney for the defense, in a breach of contract civil
The attorney for the defense, in a breach of contract civil suit, while talking to the pro se plaintiffs admitted that his client did in fact breach our contract. What can the pro se due with this adm… read more
LegalKnowledge
LegalKnowledge
Juris Doctor
28,183 satisfied customers
If someone sues me for a breach of contract and they are
If someone sues me for a breach of contract and they are trying to add up debatable if not erroneous monies indirect of the contract (like pain and suffering, missed vacation etc) they want to recover… read more
LegalKnowledge
LegalKnowledge
Juris Doctor
28,183 satisfied customers

DISCLAIMER: Answers from Experts on JustAnswer are not substitutes for the advice of an attorney. JustAnswer is a public forum and questions and responses are not private or confidential or protected by the attorney-client privilege. The Expert above is not your attorney, and the response above is not legal advice. You should not read this response to propose specific action or address specific circumstances, but only to give you a sense of general principles of law that might affect the situation you describe. Application of these general principles to particular circumstances must be done by a lawyer who has spoken with you in confidence, learned all relevant information, and explored various options. Before acting on these general principles, you should hire a lawyer licensed to practice law in the jurisdiction to which your question pertains.

The responses above are from individual Experts, not JustAnswer. The site and services are provided “as is”. To view the verified credential of an Expert, click on the “Verified” symbol in the Expert’s profile. This site is not for emergency questions which should be directed immediately by telephone or in-person to qualified professionals. Please carefully read the Terms of Service (last updated February 8, 2012).

DISCLAIMER: Answers from Experts on JustAnswer are not substitutes for the advice of an attorney. JustAnswer is a public forum and questions and responses are not private or confidential or protected by the attorney-client privilege. The Expert above is not your attorney, and the response above is not legal advice. You should not read this response to propose specific action or address specific circumstances, but only to give you a sense of general principles of law that might affect the situation you describe. Application of these general principles to particular circumstances must be done by a lawyer who has spoken with you in confidence, learned all relevant information, and explored various options. Before acting on these general principles, you should hire a lawyer licensed to practice law in the jurisdiction to which your question pertains.

The responses above are from individual Experts, not JustAnswer. The site and services are provided “as is”. To view the verified credential of an Expert, click on the “Verified” symbol in the Expert’s profile. This site is not for emergency questions which should be directed immediately by telephone or in-person to qualified professionals. Please carefully read the Terms of Service (last updated February 8, 2012).

Show MoreShow Less

Ask Your Question

x