Q: Contract law
On July 20, 2020 I signed a contract for windows for my home (around $7,000). On 9/10 I got an e-mail telling me the windows would be ready 10/29. It is now 2/26/21 and they tell me they will install on 3/29. On 2/11/21 I sent them an e-mail stating that as a commission salesperson the bottom had dropped out of my income and since we were at 29 weeks rather than 8-10 that I believe neither of us would be living up to the contract and what my options were. After 2 other e-mails they finally told me today that the contract is still valid and they had delays because of covid. The contract states that if I cancel after they are actually ordered I owe them 60% of the contract. The contract has no end date for them but I think reasonable delays might take them to 16-20 weeks not 30+. Money is tight and sales have not bounced back as I was hoping they would. While I respect the legal profession I really do not have monies to put toward a lawyer at this point. What can I do?
A: A lawyer would have to review the actual contract terms to determine if you have a right to cancel, whether their delay was a breach of contract or if the virus lockdown excuses the delay, or whether they failed to comply with all the required consumer protection notices and right of cancellation for you to be able to cancel the contract. Those would be your potential defenses if you cancel the contract, and they sue you. Until they sue you, you don't have to pay anything. But even if they don't sue, they could make adverse entries on your credit report, lowering your credit score. They could also file a mechanic's lien against your home if the windows are not standard size and cannot be installed elsewhere. Try to work it out with them to either cancel or delay the work.
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