Hoe much does this owner really have to pay me?

2 weeks ago

Ok so this guy owns a pool construction business and they did a remodel and some other tasks for some homeowner. Well he called me one day wanting me to help him with a job over there and basically I never got back with him after he had texted and called. Well he texted again a month later saying I need this done and I’ll pay u 2500. Well long story short he got fired but home owner cause I didn’t show up or watever for like a week due to my full time job and some other things. I was literally alMost done. I completed at least 75% or probably at least 80% of the job that I was supposed to do. Out of that 2500 wat does he owe me or am I entitled to. Keep in mind I’m not in contract or anything and all I have is him saying he will pay me 2500$ cash but I also understand I didn’t complete the job someone else did but I did at least 80% of it. And yes also I’m not really a sub contractor or independ contractor because I had a full time job I just used to work for this guy so he knew that I could do it for him. Thanks.

Additional info about this contractor
Project Role: Other
Project Type: Residential
Senior Legal Associate Levelset
355 reviews

If you were hired by someone other than the property owner, then it’s generally your customer’s responsibility to pay you what you’re owed – not the owner’s. So, requesting payment from your customer for the work you did perform would be a wise first step.

Even if the customer got terminated, they’re still required to pay you. That’s true even if that customer didn’t get paid unless there’s a clear pay if paid clause present. And, with an informal agreement, that’s likely not the case.

Regarding the amount that’s owed – partially completed work will usually lead to payment only being partially owed. And, when there was a lump sum price for the work, asking to be paid based on the amount of work you finished seems reasonable. Calculating an exact number can be tricky, and it may be a matter of negotiation with your customer. But, using something as simple as the price of the contract multiplied by the percentage of work completed might be a good starting point.

How to get paid when your customer was fired from the job

If that customer refuses to pay you what you’re owed, then there are still some other options that could be on the table.

For one, sending formal invoice reminders or even payment demand letters could be useful. Invoice reminders prod the customer into paying what’s owed by simply reminding them of the debt. Payment demand letters will typically include specific legal threats and put a deadline on when payment must be made. If threats won’t do, then pursuing the matter in small claims court might do the trick. Or, potentially placing the debt with a collector might be an option (though, that could be tough without a formal contract).

Further, note that mechanics lien rights might be on the table. If that’s the case, then sending the required monthly notice documents, threatening mechanics lien claims, or even pursuing a lien filing might all lead to payment, too. Of course, if this is a homestead property, then there are some other variables to account for when deciding whether lien rights are actually available. Regardless – if possible, monthly notices and Notices of Intent to Lien should be used to force payment without the need for an actual lien filing.

For discussion on Texas lien rights, the notices required to preserve them, and how the threat of lien may be enough to get paid – the articles below should be very useful.

– Texas Mechanics Lien Guide and FAQs
– Texas Monthly Notice Guide and FAQs
– What is A Notice of Intent to Lien And Should I Send One?
–  How to File Your Texas Mechanics Lien – A Step by Step Guide

Disclaimer: The information presented here is not legal advice and should not be construed as such. Rather, this content is provided for informational purposes. Do not act on this information as if it is advice. Further, this post does not create any attorney-client relationship. If you do need legal advice, seek the help of a local attorney.
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