Need Advise!!! Need To Collect On A Bill From Attorney

Discussion in 'Business Operations' started by salem3671, Oct 5, 2005.

  1. salem3671

    salem3671 LawnSite Member
    Posts: 2

    My husband has a lawn care service and in July he was hired by the manager of an apartment complex to mow their property. He did so and was paid for the first mowing. In August he went back and mowed again,however, 4 days later the owner called asking who he was and stated that the manager had been fired, that my husband charged too much and he was refusing to pay him for his services. After 2 invoices and a certified letter stating that if he failed to pay we would have to seek other avenues to collect on this debt he responded (on his attorney letterhead) that he would depose us, file a counterclaim and then had the nerve to ask for a $100 refund which would mean my husband mowed an entire apartment complex twice for only $50 and the agreed upon price with the manager was $150.00 per mowing. We have proof with the first invoice and payment from the complex that this was the fee, but now he is trying to intimidate us with the fact that he is an attorney. We would like to take him to small claims court, but aren't sure if the fact that this was the agreed upon price with the manager and the fact that the service was approved and complete befor her firing is enough. Any advise would be greatly appreciated.
     
  2. olderthandirt

    olderthandirt LawnSite Platinum Member
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    Posts: 4,900

    You have a written contract and is it signed by the partie that is authorized to make the decision on who to hire/fire ? If you do then take him to court. What do you have to loose you have nothing now and if you win he has to pay court cost.
    BTW-- no signed contract your screwed out of $$$
    Also payment of the first 2 invoices would indicate a verbal contract but its not worth the time fighting an attorney over a couple hundred $$$ They can make you spend 10X that amount to hire you own attorney to collect
     
  3. salem3671

    salem3671 LawnSite Member
    Posts: 2

    There was no written contract, only the verbal and then poof of the payment from the previous invoice. I thought that the purpose of small claims court was to be able to settle disputes without an attorney and in a quicker fashion so I'm not sure why we would be out money and need to hire an attorney to do so? Can you tell this is the first time we have been faced with this situation!? Thanks for your response.
     
  4. Evan528

    Evan528 LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,144

    I have sued a lawyer in small claims court with no written contract and won! Do not be intimidated by there BS. When you are right the judge will acknowledge it.
     
  5. olderthandirt

    olderthandirt LawnSite Platinum Member
    from here
    Posts: 4,900

    Or he can say screw you and then go golfing with the attoney. An attrney appears in court every day and the judjes get to know them so even if they decided in your the plaintiff favor the attorney can appeal the decision for the cost of the filing the appeal. You have to hire an attorney to write a brief as to why the appeal should be denied and that will invovle case study at $150 an hr and up. So even if you win the appeal the attoney can refile in a court of common pleas and demand a jury trial. And this can go on and on till he literally breaks your bank. Forget the $ 200 and learn that a written contract is worth way more than a verbal contract, and you better have a boat load of money to fight an attorney UNLESS its an open & shut case.
     
  6. stumper1620

    stumper1620 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,889

    I agree with you Mac
    But, any Judge that stays on a case where he KNOWS the attorney better recluse himself or he could lose his seat on the bench, Judges know better than to accept a case where they know either of the parties involved in the suit.
     
  7. olderthandirt

    olderthandirt LawnSite Platinum Member
    from here
    Posts: 4,900

    Thats true, but there still all attorneys and they try cases before differnt judjes all the time. Its the "good ol boy network" at its worst.
     
  8. stumper1620

    stumper1620 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,889

    no doubt about that, I think a lot of cases get settled on the golf course.
    you you win this hole I'll bargin this down to life in prison. I win the hole I get 1st degree. know what i mean.
     
  9. olderthandirt

    olderthandirt LawnSite Platinum Member
    from here
    Posts: 4,900

    Know exactly what you mean thats why I suggest to the original poster to just forget the couple hundred and learn from it. Not worth getting a judgement for $200 that cost you $20,000 :rolleyes:
     
  10. General Landscaping

    General Landscaping LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 801

    :rolleyes: Hire the Bobby G collections dept..... you'll get your money, a raise, and a 5 year contract! :rolleyes:
     

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