How can I sue my wedding photographer if they havn’t delivered my pictures after 10 months?

UPDATED: Oct 1, 2022

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How can I sue my wedding photographer if they havn’t delivered my pictures after 10 months?

My wedding photographer has stopped responding to all communications. We are still owed our entire wedding day collection of photos and video. We have already paid him in full. The contract I signed stated it can take up to 13 weeks for him to complete editing. It’s been almost a year now and I can’t get a hold of him email, social media, phone, text. I’ve asked for the raw files numerous times, but no response. There are 100 other brides waiting for the same thing from him. I don’t have his address or know of his whereabouts. How can I sue for my photos? I’m not even asking for money back, I just my wedding memories back.

Asked on June 26, 2018 under Business Law, Washington


S.L,. Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

You can sue the wedding photographer for breach of contract for failure to provide you with the wedding photos and video.
You can have a process server do a skip trace to try to locate the photographer in order to have him served with your lawsuit after you file it with the court.
If the skip trace is unsuccessful, you can serve the photographer by publication.  Service by publication is running a notice of the lawsuit in the legal notices section of a newspaper for a set period of time.  The required period of time for running the notice in the newspaper varies from state to state.  You should ask the court clerk how long the notice has to run in the newspaper for valid service by publication.  Service by publication is effective even if the photographer never sees the notice in the newspaper.  

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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