Am I legally bound to a contract presented after the job was performed?

UPDATED: Sep 30, 2022

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Am I legally bound to a contract presented after the job was performed?

I was hired as an independent contractor for an agreed upon date, times and rate. I have fulfilled the job. The company that hired me has just sent me a contractor agreement, and an email stating that I must sign the agreement to receive payment. However, shouldn’t this document have been presented to me before the job was performed, or at leasthe mentioned. This is a week after the job was completed.

Asked on January 17, 2017 under Employment Labor Law, Michigan


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

They cannot condition payment on your signing an agreement now: if you did the work, you must be paid, and if they won't pay you, you could sue them for the money based on both breach of contract (violating the agreement, even if then only an oral or unwritten one, according to which you did work or provided services for pay) and also "unjust enrichment"--to oversimplify somewhat, the law does not let them get the benefit of your work without paying for it. They could of course refuse to hire or employ you for any new or more work going forward unless you sign the contract, but that is a different story.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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