I got shafted by a contractor - what to do?

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SteveB wrote:

webtv is fulfilling it's destiny to be the scourge of usenet.
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The point is the contractor did not walk off the job, he did not plan on getting arrested and had no intention of leaving, just as if he got sick or injured. If he just walked it would be a completely different story. Since 3 weeks elapsed time was not great. A 3 week sentence would be from something minor. Learn the law guys, read exclusion contracts. If he was in the hospital for 3 weeks do you think OP would have found someone else, no, and the contractor did not get himself arrested to bail on the job, nobody plans accidents that is where your contract protects both parties. OP knew he was arrested I will bet, and the sentence, since he got someone else in in short order.
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"Since 3 weeks elapsed time was not great. A 3 week sentence would be from something minor. Learn the law guys, read exclusion contracts. "
Yeah, we need to learn the law . LOL Where in the legal system can you have a 3 week sentence appear out of the blue, with no prior knowledge? At the very least, the contractor would have to have known he was going to court for sentencing. Did he bother to disclose that to the homeowner and that he might not be able to peform the contract? And even then, it's very rare for a judge to order the guy straight to jail for a minor 3 week sentence. They generally will give the defendant time to take care of affairs with a minor sentence like that. About the only way you could have a 3 week sentence suddenly appear without warning is for the jerk to go into court for a traffic offense and call the judge a f**g SOB. Then he might get hauled off right away for contempt of court.
"If he was in the hospital for 3 weeks do you think OP would have found someone else, no"
It's quite possible that if he knew the contractor was going to be in the hospital for 3 weeks he would have done the same thing. And they are two very different things. Winding up in the hospital usually is not one's own fault, though it could be in some cases. Winding up in jail almost always is the person't own fault. There is far less reason to give someone consideration when it's their own fault. Whether 3 weeks is long enought to wait before getting someone else to finish the job is something only a judge could decide. But I can guarantee you that how the 3 weeks came to pass will definitely be part of the facts the judge considers. And I doubt a judge will consider winding up in jail an act of God.
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On 30 Jun 2005 11:59:51 -0700, snipped-for-privacy@optonline.net wrote:

Who said the guy was "sentenced" to three weeks? Maybe he was arrested after beating a small child to death with a baseball bat, and it took 3 weeks to arrange bail. Maybe it was a case of mistaken identity... Maybe... Maybe... Maybe...
Telling us to "learn the law" is pretty damned funny. You could start by learning critical thinking.
rusty redcloud
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snipped-for-privacy@webtv.net (m Ransley) wrote in 3132.bay.webtv.net:

You are stupid!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
If he just walked it would be a completely different story.

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my father was a general contractor building & remodeling homes, he hired hundreds of contractors all his life, he never got burned, here is how he did it:
he would always pay "well behind" the work, i.e. when they were 2/3 done, he would pay them for the first 1/3 etc.
the way he paid at a rate well behind the work (because subcontractors are notoriously unreliable) was such that if any contractor happened to bail on him, he would actually come out way ahead, because he would have far more work at any given time than had been paid for
only after the job was complete and everything they did worked correctly & reliably, would he pay the balance due on the job
even though he paid like this, contractors actually liked working for him, his reputation was good because the sub-contactors knew if they did a good job and completed the job, they would definitely get paid, and they liked that, as sometimes the builder is not reliable either, and sub-contractors sometimes get burned
something to think about
cowboy
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A reputable GC can probably get away with that. Those of us who are merely homeowners often have trouble getting a contractor to call back or show up, and when they do, it's on their terms. Unless you're doing a huge remodel or some other very expensive project, I don't think most of us can tell contractors how they're getting paid (at least ones that you'd want to hire...)
-Tim
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First off, you can not collect money from somebody that does not have any. This dead beat probably is broke, or dealing in cash, so good luck trying to get any money back. Even if you go to court and get a judgement against him, it does not mean you will see any money.
Second, did he claim to be licensed? Insured? If so he may have broken laws in your state, perhaps the state will burn him. You would not see any $$, but you may get the satisfaction that he is off the streets! Greg
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That should have been STEP 1
Now

Looks like you spent 16.5K on a 15K job. Actually, thats not bad, only running 10% over these days.

Write it off to experience before you really p*ss him off and the deadbeat sends some of his jailbird buddies over in the middle of the night after their bar closes to do a job on your house or car.
You wont get any $$ out of a scumbag like that. They usually drive a $ 250.00 truck and anything else they MAY have thats worth $$ is usually in someone elses name.
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