Anyone have success with Small Claims and collection

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Mar 16, 2004

I have had problems with a new roof leaking and staining our cathedral ceiling. The contractor is not coming through on the warranty in our contract whatsoever. I have written a certified letter stating the defect which they received and have not had any contact back in a month. I plan on sending a second certified letter.

If they do not acknowledge the letter my next step is to get another contractor to repair it and get an estimate for painting the ceiling.

I am guessing work is around $1000. I am wondering if small claims is worth pursuing if there is no guarentee of payment if you win (I imagine yes).

Anyone with experience?


ps: sorry in wrong forum should be General and off topic, please move when discovered

[ August 30, 2005, 02:44 PM: Message edited by: rjundi ]
Call the contractors license board and see what they say. The contractor is hoping you don't do anything else. You would most likely win, but it may be more trouble than it is worth. Be sure to use a good oil base primer to paint over the stain.
Get a judgement. Maybe you could put a lien on the income from his current projects. Might be limited options in small claims court but give it a shot.
My daughter was involved in a landlord dispute several years ago. She won her case and the landlord had five days to pay. After that, the sheriff would have served him with a contempt of court citation. He paid and she got her payment from the clerk of the court. Case closed.

A nephew recently got a judgment against a mechanic who stiffed him on a car sale. While the mechanic has no property to attach, the judgement can be used in the future to attach a lien to any property this mechanic may own. That provides some future leverage for court actions if the crook ever accumulates any property that is worth attaching a lien to.

My advice is go ahead and get the judgment. If you have to pursue attaching a lien to his property after that, you may need a lawyer, but the costs of any settlement or court judgement resulting from his not paying the initial judgment should be included in the required payment amount/lien.
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