In Louisina, do I have legal right to ask for details on a back charge I think is unfair?

2 months ago

First time I have ever had this happen (30 years in business). Back charge for corrective work is conveniently $100 less than the balance on the contract. I asked for specifics on time spent, work that needed to be done on what specific areas – no response.
I agree some work had to be done, and expected about 54% of the amount they ended up sending me notice of.
For months I have asked for information on work done and time it took (not looking for daily logs but at least something).

Additional info about this contractor
Project Role: Subcontractor
Senior Legal Associate Levelset
355 reviews

Asking for a breakdown or justification for a back charge is perfectly normal. And, honestly, it should be expected – otherwise, there’s no way of knowing whether the customer has based the charge off of actual accounting or whether they’ve just gone and picked a number to issue a back charge for. So, asking for an itemized list of charges, receipts, etc. for the amounts being back charged isn’t out of the question.

One way to force a customer to take your request seriously is to threaten to make a payment claim if they refuse to provide a basis for the amounts being back charged. Threats of legal claims or even mechanics lien claims will put pressure on the customer to operate transparently and honestly. Plus, since a Notice of Intent to Lien is generally sent to the customer, the GC, and the property owner – this can put additional pressure on the customer to make payment or at least justify their actions. And, to be sure, mechanics lien claims are still available when the amounts owed and workmanship are both in dispute.

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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Anonymous

Thank you Matthew!

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