What to do if a homeowner is threating to sue me if I don’t return the $1500 they gave me to start on a job for them but I was fired me after 2 days on the job due to workmanship not being up to par for them?

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What to do if a homeowner is threating to sue me if I don’t return the $1500 they gave me to start on a job for them but I was fired me after 2 days on the job due to workmanship not being up to par for them?

We didn’t have a contract we just a verbal agreement and a text message that said they wanted me for the job.

Asked on October 6, 2015 under Business Law, Illinois

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 6 years ago | Contributor

The issue is, was the workmanship up to generally acceptable commercial practices or standards e.g. as good as you'd expect a contractor to do the work or not? 
If what us to generally accepted standards, then even if these people are particularly picky, they had no right to fire you and by doing so, they breached the oral that's the better term than "verbal" agreement and you would not have to return the money.
But if your work was not up to generally accepted commercial standards, then you would be in breach and may have committed fraud, by promising more than you could deliver, to get the job, and/or if you did not do the work to the agreed-upon specifications e.g. weren't doing what they asked you to do, then they could get their money back.


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