What to d regarding a breach of contract?

UPDATED: Oct 1, 2022

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What to d regarding a breach of contract?

I own my own bookkeeping business and had a client who I was contracting my services to; it was another bookkeeper who needed work done so I did work for some of her clients on contract basis. We had a contract that she would pay me 50% of income she made from work I did but she ended the contract at the end of the year, 10 months ago. And since then she hasn’t paid me my final invoices for work completed up to termination date of the contract. She did pay me all year for other work, however now she is saying that she wasn’t happy with the work done last year so will only pay me 0.50 cents per transaction instead of the agreed upon amount of 50% of what she made from the client. I don’t feel like I broke the contract as the work was done. By my calculations she owes me $10,000 but she is saying that I owe her $7,000. Does she have a right to do this?

Asked on October 22, 2018 under Employment Labor Law, Alaska


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

A contract is enorced as per the plain terms of it. You quoted the language, "The Company shall retain the Contractor as an independent contractor to provide bookkeeping and accounting for AG Tax clients, according to Canadian Bookkeeping and Accounting standards...." So the issue is not whether she is happy with the work; it's whether the work met those Canadian standards, since those standards are referenced as what the work must meet. If it did, she must pay you; if it didn't, she does not (though that would not necessarily mean that you owe her money, unless she can show that your breach of the standards affirmatively caused her to incur costs or losses). If you and she cannot  work this out between the two you, the recourse would be for one of you (e.g. you, for the unpaid invoices she owes you) to sue the other and let a court determine whether the work was done to the minimum necessary standards as per those Canadian Bookkeeping and Accounting standards.

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