What to do if I have not been paid for my services for building a website?

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What to do if I have not been paid for my services for building a website?

I was hired by a business owner to do a website for him. I got the website as complete as I could and asked him for the information to complete it. He’s been stalling for weeks, has passed the communicated deadline and still ignores messages and phone calls. I’ve practically completed the website with the exception of a few minor details on the company that he again has failed to give me. He will not pay me for my service. There was no contract but I do have written communications displaying our agreement (e-mails, texts) saying that we agreed upon what service is being offered and for what compensation. Is he breaking the law by stopping communication and not compensating me? He did not display any dissatisfaction with my work.

Asked on June 5, 2013 under Business Law, Virginia

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

If you had an agreement--whether written or oral/verbal--about the work you would do and what he would pay you for it, and if you have done your part (honored all your obligations), then he has to honor his obligations in turn. If he does not--such as by not paying you as per the agreement, or by not cooperating to enable you to complete the work--then he is in breach of his agreement. You could sue him, such as in small claims court (or in "regular" county court for larger amounts) for the money he owes you under the agreement.


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