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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 46176
Experience:  Qualified Solicitor - Please start your question with 'For Ben Jones'
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18 months ago a builder started working renovating a

Resolved Question:

18 months ago a builder started working for me renovating a property no written agreement was made as we had known eachother a while.however I ran out of money and could no longer afford his weekly charge?which I had been paying for over a year I confronted him and he now says that I should pay him a months wages he was not on my pay roll I am wanting to know how I stand in law
Submitted: 8 months ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 8 months ago.

Hello, my name is***** am a qualified lawyer and it is my pleasure to assist you with your question today.

Expert:  Ben Jones replied 8 months ago.

After you had ceased paying his weekly charges, did he continue to do any work for you?

Customer: replied 8 months ago.
no
Customer: replied 8 months ago.
I would rather chat this way thanks
Customer: replied 8 months ago.
are we still discussing this matter?
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 8 months ago.

That's fine and thank you for your response; please leave it with me. I am in court at the moment and then I will be travelling until late so I won't be able to reply until the morning. However, I will prepare my advice during this time and will get back to you at the earliest opportunity. There is no need to check on here as you will receive an email when I have responded. Thank you.

Expert:  Ben Jones replied 8 months ago.

Many thanks for your patience. it is unlikely that he would be able to claim a weekly wage from you because he would not have been your employee. As a builder working on your property, even if on an ongoing basis, he would have most likely been working as a contractor. As such he is not entitled to receive a wage and all he would get would be payments under a self employed contract. Whilst no written agreement existed, there would be an implied contract based on what you had agreed with him at the outset. So that could have been a set weekly payment for the work he undertook for you. If he did not undertake any work for you and you no longer required his services then you would not be obliged to continue paying him. However, you would have had to give him some notice to terminate the contract that was in place so he may still be able to pursue you for a reasonable notice period for the termination of his services.

This is your basic legal position. I have more detailed advice for you in terms of the law on the termination of self employed contracts and notice periods, which I wish to discuss so please take a second to leave a positive rating for the service so far (by selecting 3, 4 or 5 stars) and I can continue with that and answer any further questions you may have. Don’t worry, there is no extra cost and leaving a rating will not close the question and we can continue this discussion. Thank you

Customer: replied 8 months ago.
satisfied with answer to my query however I need to ask more questions
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 8 months ago.

Yes of course, please leave your rating for the response so far and I will be able to answer any follow up questions you may have. Thank you

Expert:  Ben Jones replied 8 months ago.

Hello, do you need any further assistance or are you happy with the above response? Look forward to hearing from you.

Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 46176
Experience: Qualified Solicitor - Please start your question with 'For Ben Jones'
Ben Jones and other Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 8 months ago.
thankyou but I need more info I kind of knew already your advice?the builder has presented me with a bill for his wages and 3 labourerers (who are on his payroll)he is claiming that I should have kept them another 4 weeks @£2,073 a week?because he says that's how much more time the project needed to get finished!!he have me no contract of works no agreement of time schedule,nor terms and conditions?as you can imagine it was indeed a massive project converting a pub in leeds to dwellings!would I be able to use your services should be Persue me through small claims court as he is being very threatening towards me.
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 8 months ago.

Hi there, unfortunately I cannot assist outside of this site as that is against the terms that I work under. Going back to your query, it appears they are claiming that you terminated the contract early without giving sufficient notice. The lack of any defined timelines, or terms in writing will hopefully assist you as it would make it more difficult for them to argue you had breached the agreement between you and them.

Whether a self employed worker is entitled to a notice period will depend on their contract. If there is a termination clause that specifies a notice period on termination, the employer would be expected to give that notice if they wish to end the employment relationship.

However, it is often the case that no written contract exists, or there is no notice clause in it. In such situations, the worker can still expect a 'reasonable' notice period to have their employment terminated. This is because even in the absence of a written contract they will be working under an implied common law contract and to terminate such a contract a reasonable notice period is required. The only exception is if the contract was terminated because of gross misconduct, that is any misconduct serious enough to justify the employment relationship terminating immediately.

What is a reasonable notice period will vary greatly and will depend on the individual circumstances, industry practices, length of employment, frequency of payment, etc. There are far too many variables to consider, which means it is usually impossible to give a precise indication as to what would be reasonable in each case. It is therefore down to the courts to make that decision. The worker can nevertheless raise this issue with the employer and attempt to negotiate a reasonable notice period with them, a period that they will both be happy to accept.

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