Q: So I hired a contractor to build a pergola on my patio. I paid the down payment of $3775.00 and no work what can I do?
After 2 different reschedules, no show no call on the third reschedule. I had to track down information and I find out the owner was closing business financial problems this was on August 30. I have yet not received any paperwork from a lawyer stating he has filed bankruptcy. I went and file charges against him and the sub contractor and now the owner moved to another city an hour away. How can he be served? How long do I waite before I know if he even hired a bankruptcy lawyer.
A: Go file a criminal Complaint for Theft against him. What you described may be a crime and non-dischargeable in bankruptcy.
A: There is no time limit on filing bankruptcy. He could wait years to do it, if he ever even files. There is, however, a time limit on you filing a civil suit against him for breach of contract and fraud. If you were to sue him in the county where the work was performed you would have to file the lawsuit in District Court, not small claims court. In order to serve him, you need a good address for him. If you sue in District Court, you send the summons and complaint to the Sheriff in the county that he moved to listing an address where he can be served, and the Sheriff will attempt to serve him. You could also sue him in small claims court in the county where he now resides, and the Sheriff can serve him. Either way, you will need a good address for him. Do not delay in pursuing your remedies. I also agree that filing criminal charges are a good step. If he is convicted of fraud, bankruptcy will not discharge his obligations to you.
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