If we did not sign any contract or terms/conditions, are we still held liable for windows we had a contractor purchase if he failed to communicate?

Get Legal Help Today

 Secured with SHA-256 Encryption

If we did not sign any contract or terms/conditions, are we still held liable for windows we had a contractor purchase if he failed to communicate?

No contract provided, no terms and conditions given. We were told they would be in within 2 weeks and we did not get a notice of any type of delay so we moved on to a different contractor. He did not attempt any communication for more than 7 weeks, so we hired a new contractor. Are we liable to pay for these windows still?

Asked on May 11, 2012 under Business Law, Indiana

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

You most likely are liable. Oral agreements are enforceable, so if there was an oral agreement between you and the contractor that he would buy windows for you and you'd pay for them, that is enforceable. Furthermore, if in reasonable reliance on your promise to pay for the windows, the contractor acted to his detriment by ordering windows which had to pay for, that detrimental reliance on your promise may be enough to make the promise or representation that you wanted the windows binding, even if, for some reason, it was held that there was no actual contract or agreement.

However, if the windows are ones which he could return for at least some of the money and/or reuse or resell, you would likely be entitled to an offset against what you would owe; people are required to take reasonable steps to minimize or mitigate their losses, and are not entitled to double recovery--that is, to the extent someone can offset their loss, they must do that and effectively "credit" that against what they hope to recover from the person who caused their loss.


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 AttorneyPages.com 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.

Get Legal Help Today

Find the right lawyer for your legal issue.

 Secured with SHA-256 Encryption