Settling Payment Disputes After Constructing A Building
One of the most common legal challenges that occur in the construction industry is payment disputes. Construction lawyers often assist those in the construction industry to receive the payments that they deserve for the services rendered. There are several issues in particular that you might face.
Failure to Pay an Invoice
One common problem is when a client attempts to not pay the full amount owed for services rendered. For example, one party might attempt to satisfy an invoice with an amount that is less than the amount owed. The payee includes the notation "paid in full" with the goal of encouraging the other party to accept the full amount. There is no reason why you should feel forced to accept less than what is owed to you.
Failure to Negotiate a Price
Another problem is when a construction contractor performs work for a price that is negotiated and the client pays what is owed. Then, the client requests additional work and the contractor performs the work without negotiating a price. Then, the client may be unwilling to pay for the work performed or may offer much less than what the contractor would consider acceptable. The best way to avoid this is to negotiate a price upfront, but if this wasn't done, you may need to resolve the dispute through civil litigation.
Options Available When Taking Legal Action
If you cannot resolve a payment dispute, you could choose to go to court. However, going to court is often the last resort and can be very expensive. You're better off resolving a payment dispute by involving a construction attorney and entering into mediation. Both parties will be able to save money out of court.
As with all forms of civil litigation, there is a statute of limitations. With construction jobs, the statute of limitations is typically four years after one of a series of events occur. These events include the possession of the building by the owner, the date of the abandonment of the construction if it is not completed, the date of the termination of the contract, or the date that the certificate of occupancy was issued.
If more than one of these occurs, the statute of limitations will be based on which event occurred most recently. Because you have a time limit to seek legal action and because you likely need compensation for damages, it's essential that you contact a construction attorney as soon as possible.
To learn more, contact a construction attorney today.