Q: My elderly mother had a walk-in shower installed. Work was non- ADA compliant, not code, and horrible quality.
Had to be torn out and replaced by another company.
First company is an LLC. No written contract. Estimate only. Checks were payable to the owner's name.
Can she sue the LLC in small claims court?
Should she sue the individual who is the LLC owner and to whom the checks were payable?
Is your mother willing to go to court personally and argue her case? Is the owner/representative of company number 2 willing to attend small claims court with her and testify against company no 1? Are your mother and the representative of company no. 2 willing to travel to the county where bad LLC no 1 maintains its principal place of business to testify (and your mother to file the paperwork)? Is the claim for $10,000.00 or less? If the answer to all 4 questions is yes, small claims is the appropriate place to sue.
If any of the answers to these questions is no, she needs to hire an attorney to file in District Court. District Court is for larger cases, and an attorney can get a default judgment if company 1 fails to answer or respond to the lawsuit. If it does want to defend itself, it has to have an attorney in District Court. A "Motion For Summary JUdgment" is also possible in District Court, where a Judgment can be obtained based upon addidavits instead of live testimony. The witnesses (mom and contractor #2) give affidavits, which are sworn statements, about the facts and the bad conduct of company #1.
I would also add that if nobody from company 2 is willing to go to court and testify or give a sworn statement that company 1's work was poor quality, not up to code and had to be repaired, she won't be able to win any kind of lawsuit against company 1.
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