If I’m a freelance sub-contractor for company that has not paid me, can I legally suspend/take down their website until they pay?

UPDATED: Feb 13, 2012

Advertiser Disclosure

It’s all about you. We want to help you make the right legal decisions.

We strive to help you make confident insurance and legal decisions. Finding trusted and reliable insurance quotes and legal advice should be easy. This doesn’t influence our content. Our opinions are our own.

Get Legal Help Today

Compare Quotes From Top Companies and Save

secured lock Secured with SHA-256 Encryption

If I’m a freelance sub-contractor for company that has not paid me, can I legally suspend/take down their website until they pay?

I setup the website hosting and it’s in my name. They have applied to have it legally removed from my name although they owe me $6,000 in unpaid development work. The site doesn’t get many visits so it’s not massively impacting business but I suppose they could argue that. I have to file an affidavit stating I’m the legal owner to the site in order to keep it taken down and I’m not sure I’m legally allowed to claim this.

Asked on February 13, 2012 under Employment Labor Law, California


Bradley Miller / Miller Law LLC

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

This question is impossible to answer without sitting down with you and goin over the entire situation with you. Much will depend on your contract. Does it state when rights to the site transfer?

If you don't have that in your standard contract, you should definitely get language in there so it is clear when ownership to the site officially transfers. That way you can avoid situations like you are in now.

Unfortunately, you are going to have to meet with an attorney to figure this one out. I would be happy to refer you to one here in Ohio (Cincy/Dayton/Columbus area) if you need someone.

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 AttorneyPages.com 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.

Get Legal Help Today

Find the right lawyer for your legal issue.

secured lock Secured with SHA-256 Encryption