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What do i do for services done on a residential home for a customer that hired us in her mom's home and now her mom is deceased and is an estate?

GeorgiaMechanics LienNotice of Intent to LienRecovery Options

I was hired to replace water damaged hardwood flooring in hallway, remove carpet in one bedroom and screen all rooms with hardwood and polyurethane them price included labor and materiLs. The job was in her mom's home. Her mom just passed. What do i do now? She is refusing to pay job was 95% complete we moved all furniture in all rooms and she called the police. She breached contract and says she don't like it. She's got a $15000 job done for $1500 shes paid $600

1 reply

Nov 30, 2018
I'm very sorry to hear that. Everyone deserves to be paid what they've earned, and, based on the above, it sounds like the owner may be acting unreasonably. What's more, it's important to establish that the death of a property owner doesn't mean that payment cannot be obtained for work performed. First, it's worth mentioning that the threat of a mechanics lien, via a Notice of Intent to Lien, is a powerful tool to compel payment. It serves as a warning, stating that if payment isn't made and made fast, a mechanics lien will be filed. Considering how powerful mechanics liens can be, often, the threat of lien will at least help spring negotiations. Further, where work has been authorized, performed, and unpaid - typically, the right to file a mechanics lien will arise. While interesting property ownership situations can complicate things, if the work was ultimately authorized by the owner of the property (at the time work was agreed to) or someone able to act on their behalf, work will typically give rise to lien rights. Further, mechanics liens attach to the property not the person - and lien rights arise directly against the property as a result of improving that property. Thus, even where the party who authorized the work has passed, a mechanics lien could still be filed against the property - and the estate would ultimately be responsible for resolving the issue. For more on Georgia mechanics lien laws, this page should be helpful: Georgia Lien and Notice FAQs. Of course, there are other potential options for recovery. Sending a demand letter threatening specific legal action for work performed and unpaid could be effective - especially if sent through an attorney. Plus, if all else fails, suing for damages could also be an option.
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