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Contractor worried he’s being stiffed for payment by condo corporation

"The only paper trail I have is a series of emails."


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November 30, 2018 by canadiancontractor

Another in our “Getting Paid” series of comments…

Please weigh in with your comments to help Allan out…

Hello. I’m a small contractor in Toronto who did a job for a large condo company. It was an emergency job that needed urgent attention and, as such, the only “paper trail” I have is a series of emails between myself and the condo board (in which they agreed to have the work done and agreed to pay in full upon completion).

I did the work outlined in my scope of work and they were very happy with it. However… it has now been 42 days since the job was completed and they have not paid me. Furthermore, they have stopped taking or returning my phone calls. I’ve been very polite up until this point and am wondering if I have any legal recourse at all. Any advice would be appreciated.

Allan


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3 Comments » for Contractor worried he’s being stiffed for payment by condo corporation
  1. Steve Payne says:

    Allan:
    Sorry to hear you are having trouble getting paid.
    A couple of points…
    (1) Emails and text messages can INDEED constitute a legally binding agreement. Don’t worry about not having a paper document. Presumably someone in authority from the condo (the condo management firm 99 per cent of the time) agreed the scope of work and a price. That’s a contract.
    (2) You mention legal recourse. It’s always a last resort. If you go to small claims court and get a judgement against the condo corporation, you still have to collect. You won’t get your money on your court day. So we always recommend you use court as a last resort. Speaking personally, I would find out which unit the president of the condo corporation lives in, and go pay him or her a friendly visit. I DO mean friendly. The cheques will be written by the condo management firm, not the president, but condo management firms hate it when presidents and board members find them… shall we say… wanting.

  2. rob wright says:

    Allan
    Steve has some good points, but would suggest you look into your lien rights and get those ducks in a row. If your conversation with the condo president does not leave you with the warm and fuzzies; write a letter to the board indicating that you will file a lien. That is usually the last thing you need to do to get your money with out a scrap. Good luck with this