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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 49812
Experience:  Qualified Solicitor - Please start your question with 'For Ben Jones'
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I'm a painter and decorator and my customer owes me £1250.She

Customer Question

I'm a painter and decorator and my customer owes me £1250.She is holding back my money due to'
1 After asking her to clear the room prior to starting the job she left one of a pair of curtains hanging....she says that I got paint on them and that the full pair cost £600 and asked me to get it dry cleaned,which I did.However this did not remove marks completely.I dont know whether it was me who got paint on curtains or not but just wanted to please customer and get my money
2.whilst working in this lounge and dining room \I had to open a door that led into the hall way.As I did this I was unaware that a large slab of old granite worktop had been leaning against the door on the hallway side.As the door opened I could feel that something was about to come crashing into the room probably injuring me in the process.I closed the door to stop this happening which unfortunately resulted in the piece of granite toppling over against the wall opposite resulting in a damaged wall and a smashed piece of granite.In my opinion this was a result of her negligence but she says that she had a buyer for the granite and that I owe her £100.
3.Whilst deciding to clean some dirt,left by a plasterer, off a a small internal window which I had finished painting the window pane cracked.There was already a pre-existing semicircular crack at the top of the pane. and when I was wiping the pane to buff it up the glass split vertically from the original crack.She is accusing me of smashing her window and wants £100.
I tried to talk to her on the phone to arrange a meeting but she started swearing at me so I disconnected .I wish to resolve this situation amicably but now feel that trust has broken down.I still have the curtain and if she insists that I owe her £600 for the pair I think I should be given the old curtains in lieu.I have been decorating for over 25 years and have never been in this situation before so your advice is welcome
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 2 years ago.
Hello, my name is***** am a qualified lawyer and it is my pleasure to assist you with your question today. What specific queries do you have about this situation please?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
I want to know whether she is entitled to hold back my money,whether it would worth going to a small claim court,whether she has any responsiblities re leaving piece of granite resting against door.Am I liable for all the incidents I described.
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 2 years ago.
OK so to answer your queries for each scenario: 1. If you had damaged the curtains trough your negligence then you may indeed be responsible for compensating her for the damage. You may have asked her to remove them but if they were still there and could have been damaged then you should ave either not gone ahead with the works or removed them yourself. However, she cannot claim the exact value for a new pair, the age and value of the curtains now would be considered so depending on how old they are they could be valued at a lot less than a new pair. 2. Strictly speaking there is nothing wrong with leaving a piece of granite leaning against a door but she would need to consider if that could affect anyone else that may be in the vicinity. So if it was reasonable to expect you to be using that door or being near it and likely to open it, then she should have ensured no such hazards are in existence. 3. If there was a pre-existing crack then you are unlikely to be held to be liable for the whole pane. I think in the circumstances she is being somewhat opportunistic and trying to get away with paying less than hat she should have to. You can indeed proceed further and go as far as the small claims although that should only be a last resort. This is your basic legal position. I have more detailed advice for you in terms of the procedure you need to follow should you decide to take things further, 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, leaving a rating will not close the question and we can continue this discussion. Thank you