Lake Worth, FL asked in Construction Law and Contracts for Florida

Q: How can i make a contractor finish the job i hired him for, and commit to the contract?

I hired a contractor for home improvement job, he is not responding and not finishing the job. He already got half the money. The contract says he has to finish everything by end of April 2021, and yet it's not done.

How can i get him to finish the job?

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2 Lawyer Answers
Linda Liang
Linda Liang
  • Boca Raton, FL
  • Licensed in Florida

A: I would remind him of the contract he signed and the consequence if he breaches the contract. I would put everything in writing to show him that you are very serious.

Charles M.  Baron
Charles M. Baron
  • Hollywood, FL
  • Licensed in Florida

A: This is a recurrent problem with contractors. Deadlines in contracts are NOT legally considered to be strict, enforceable deadlines UNLESS the contract specifies that "time is of the essence" or any similar language (for example, "the parties agree that the deadline in this contract is a strict deadline, and not meeting the deadline is a breach of this contract"). So one way to handle this is to NOW request the contractor to agree to a new written deadline and that "time is of the essence". Ask him, "By what date will you be able to complete the job, which we can put in writing?" If he gives a date that you can live with, get his John Hancock (that is, his signature) on a typed or hand-written supplemental agreement with the strict deadline language. Both sign and date. If he is not cooperative, schedule a consultation with an attorney.

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