What is my recourse if I have been ripped off by a general contractor remodelling my home?

The GC received 2/3 of the funds to remodel my house with final payment due upon completion. Work commenced in August to be completed by the end of September. To date, November, not 1/3 of the work has been completed. I keep getting excuses – he has no more funds to purchase materials or pay his workers. He just keeps asking for more money. I have limited funds and do not know how to proceed. The electrical and plumbing are my costs but they have to be listed under the GC for the city permit, however they cannot begin or complete their work until the GC completes his. The City pulled the permit due to an earlier electrical company issue with pulling their permit from under the GC and I cannot afford to go through more of the same. I need some guidance as to my options or what I can pursue.

Asked on November 12, 2018 under Real Estate Law, Texas


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 2 years ago | Contributor

You can sue the GC for breach of contract (if he has not met dates in the contract), and/or for breach of the "implied covenant of good faith and fair dealing," or the obligation to treat fairly and good faith with the other party to a contract (if they can be shown to not be acting in good faith), and/or for fraud (if they lied about what they could or would do). Any of these grounds for a lawsuit would let you recover some or all of the moeny you have pai d them, and also escape any obligation to continue using or paying them.

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