We remodeled a home and built most of the new patio cover on a client's home. She broke our signed contract, and she charged back her credit card all of the monies she paid us for materials. Her attorney (her sister) bullied us and let us know we could not afford to fight it in court, and our work was shoddy. We are a small family owned company. This was 2019. Now she's got her home finished after using the structural components we built! She charged back 25k and screwed us over. I missed mechanic's lien bc she was buying her time. What can we do?
Go to war. You're out on your lien rights but you still may have a claim for Breach of Contract, Promissory Estoppel, Quantum Meruit, Fraud/Fraudulent Inducement, Violation of the Prompt Payment Act, and Sworn Account.
Filing the suit is simple enough. Discovery is going to be a beating, though. With the project being several years old and everything being closed up, your records are going to need to be immaculate. Invoices, pictures, payments, conversations, depositions, and subpoenas for information she was given by the subsequent contractors. PLUS does she even own the house still?
I charge flat fees for everything so I can show you how much this would cost you but be aware that you are in for a fight and the recovery on the back end may not be what you think. If you have a check that she paid you with, we can do some pre-emptive asset searching but that also costs.
E. Aaron Cartwright III