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KAH
05-25-2010, 07:06 PM
Hello, any advice for a newbie who took on a lawn (1/3 acre) as a sub all verbal communication, nothing in writing. We cut to the customers expectations for eight weeks without payment from the man who punted the lawn to us. Do I have any case? We told the homeowner who appears to be in our corner but the guy just lied and said he paid us already. Any thoughts?

MountainViewGreenskeeper
05-25-2010, 07:44 PM
dnt know much legal stuff but next time i wouldnt mow 8 weeks without getting paid.... thats my 2 cents

The Cleaning Doctor
05-25-2010, 09:32 PM
Gonna be tough with nothing in writing but in some cases a verbal contract is just as good. You would have to take him to small claims. Maybe the home owner can get them to produce the proof of payment. I would talk to them and tell them that your only recourse would be to put a lien on the property.

Get the home owner to sign up with you direct.

Sorry man that sucks. I work with a lot of out of town home owners and it is always a tricky situation but so far it has all worked out. I do get it in writing though.

JP Landscaping
05-25-2010, 10:44 PM
Send him to collections. I sent a customer last year to collections because he wasn't paying. All you need is his full name, address, and phone number. Send him a certified letter before hand. If he doesn't pay, then his credit will be hurt.

Another option is to take him to court and have the homeowner testify or write a testimonial saying you have been mowing their lawn and they have been paying the other guy. The other guy won't have any proof he has paid you. A verbal contract is still a contract.

Also, take that customer from him and explain to the customer the situation. I'm sure they would be willing to switch after finding out what kind of company they were with. Besides, they know your work already.

ClintFL
06-08-2010, 08:35 AM
Hello, any advice for a newbie who took on a lawn (1/3 acre) as a sub all verbal communication, nothing in writing. We cut to the customers expectations for eight weeks without payment from the man who punted the lawn to us. Do I have any case? We told the homeowner who appears to be in our corner but the guy just lied and said he paid us already. Any thoughts?

1. Stop expecting the other contractor to pay.
2. Have the customer pay you.
3. File in small claims court for your $. (less than $50 to file)

Step 3 should 'scare' the guy into paying you if he doesn't take it to court. That's what small claims is for.

Steve
06-09-2010, 04:18 AM
Is there any update on this situation?

KAH
06-15-2010, 06:54 PM
No update to speak of. I'm still uncertain if I should be taking the contractor to small claims or the homeowner. It's possible they teamed up and came up with this little scam to get free lawn service. We had the verbal contract with the guy who subcontracted to us not the homeowner. Homeowner will tell us to "go to grass." Pardon the pun.

The Cleaning Doctor
06-15-2010, 08:43 PM
Take him to court and then put a lien on the property. One of them will pay up.

Steve
06-16-2010, 10:53 AM
Why not go to a local attorney and be prepared to pay him a hundred or two for his advise on how to handle it and then do what he says.

If it is to be handled in small claims, once you have the proper direction, file the lawsuit and I do believe you can recoup your legal fees as well.

Don't let this thing drag on. It will make you madder the longer it goes on.

Once you go through this and understand the process, it will change the way you do business for the better. You will get a better handle on what you need from the customer when you have an agreement to prove it in court. And it will empower you with the knowledge of how to get paid when a customer either refuses to pay you or tries to put it off onto a general contractor.

Keep us posted on what you are doing next.