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Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 21
Experience:  Moderator
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I am in dispute with a tradesman who was hired to do a museum

Customer Question

I am in dispute with a tradesman who was hired to do a 'museum quality' finish on a caravan restoration. I paid £3000 deposit with a view to paying the remainder on completion of the job. Our caravan was returned to us at 2am and so we could not see the condition of the work until daylight. Needless to say the finish was most definitely not 'museum quality'. It is shoddy and indeed dangerous as some screws have fallen off in transit. The tradesman began to ask for the remainder of the payment within six hours of delivery and has been harrassing us constantly over the last four days. We have contacted him to say that we are not happy with the work and that we have not got the job that we agreed to. To that end we said that we were willing to pay half of the remaining costs as we will have to have the caravan re-done. Are we legally bound to use him to fix these problems as we now know that he does not have the craftsmanship? re
Submitted: 4 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 4 years ago.

Ben Jones :

Hello, my name is Ben and it is my pleasure to assist you with your question today.

When you have entered into a contract for work and materials, where the main focus is labour and skill, the law says that the work must be:

  • Carried out with reasonable care and skill – i.e. to a proper standard of workmanship;
  • Finished within a reasonable time (unless a specific time has been agreed); and
  • Provided at a reasonable cost (unless a specific price has been agreed).

In addition, any materials provided as part of the work must:

  • Match their description
  • Be of satisfactory quality

If there are problems with the standard of work, or the materials used, you will have certain rights.

If work has already started or completed, and there has been some breach of contract by the other side, you would usually be expected to give them the opportunity to rectify the problem. However, if you can justify why they should not be given such an opportunity, for example, if work has been left in a dangerous condition or their work is obviously below-par, you could refuse to do so.

In terms of potential compensation, you may be entitled to that in the following circumstances:

  • The work was not carried out with reasonable care and skill, or finished within a reasonable time;
  • The tradesman has been negligent in their work;
  • You have accepted a repair, which turns out to be unsatisfactory;
  • The services are unsafe and someone has suffered injury
  • You have incurred additional expenses or suffered inconvenience because of the tradesman's breach of contract.

So there are circumstances when the original tradesman does not have to be given the opportunity to rectify the issues and you can ask for someone else to do this. Please note, however, that it would not stop the original tradesman from pursuing this if they believe they have been treated unfairly.

JACUSTOMER-jz2x30da- :

Thank you very much for your reply.

JACUSTOMER-jz2x30da- :

Sorry, pressed 'return' by accident and hadn't finished.

JACUSTOMER-jz2x30da- :

...and I've just done it again. OK, here goes - can I ask anther question here or do we have to go back to the beginning again (for payment)?

Ben Jones :

you can ask any related follow up query on here

Expert:  Nicola-mod replied 4 years ago.

Just a quick reminder, there is an unrated answer waiting for you here from the Professional.

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Thank you,