What to do if I hired a contractor he received 1/3 of the money to start he hasn’t bought any materials and it’s been 2 months so far?

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What to do if I hired a contractor he received 1/3 of the money to start he hasn’t bought any materials and it’s been 2 months so far?

I feel I’m being scammed and want out of the contract. Do I have any chance of getting my money back?

Asked on August 27, 2015 under Business Law, Illinois

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 6 years ago | Contributor

If there was a date in the contract by which the work should start and he has already exceeded that date, he is in violation of the contract and you could sue him for the return of your money.
If there is a date and he hasn't reached it yet, he hasn't done anything wrong--he still has more time.
If there was no date set in the agreement, the case is not as clear cut, but he still cannot delay indefinitely. Send him a written request, sent some way you can prove delivery e.g. by certified mail or fed ex with tracking setting out how much time has passed and asking him to, within, say, 10 business days, provide you with a schedule for the work and date by which he will begin. If he does not do that, send him a second letter again, sent some way you can prove delivery that by his refusal to start work or even set a date/schedule, he is in breach of contract and that you are requesting your money back. If he still will not refund your money, then you should sue him possibly in small claims court, acting as your own attorney or "pro se" to save on legal fees to recover your funds.


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