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ukfamilysolicitor, Solicitor
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 1494
Experience:  Qualified Solicitor Currently specialising in Family. Also experienced in Corporate, Employment, Civil Litigation, Debt Recovery
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I had a verbal contract with a builder to do some work about

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I had a verbal contract with a builder to do some work about 6 months ago. I gave him £500 for materials, he was due to start the job immediately. He then went AWOL. when I managed to get back in contact with him he told me he had been ill and was about to do the job ASAP. I said OK. Since then he has not done the work but has further stories of illness complications. Finally I had enough and sent him a registered letter saying that he had until the end of this month to either do the work or return my deposit. I have not heard from him.
What if anything should/can I do next please?


Welcome to Just Answer

I am a Solicitor and will assist you.

I am sorry to hear about the difficulties that you are having with the builder who took your money but did no work for you.

I would suggest that if you do not get a satisfactory response then you take action to recover your money.

First thing you need to do is send him a letter ( by recorded delivery and keep a copy). Head this letter as a 'Letter before Action'. Set out the verbal agreement that you had. The monies you paid him and how he has not undertaken any work. Give him 14 days to repay the money. Detail that if the monies are not paid in that time then you will be making a claim through the courts for the money.

I appreciate that it sounds like you want to the work completing and that you have already sent a letter but there is going to be a time when you want to draw a line under this and get an order for your money.

If he does not pay you at this point, or agree a suitable repayment plan to you and stick to it, then you need to claim the money from the court. You can do this using the money claims online service. This is the link:

Once you have issued your claim, a copy of the papers will be sent to him. If he does not respond to the court papers then you can ask for Judgement in default of him not responding and if he then does not pay within 14 days you can ask the court to enforce the court order. The type of enforcement you choose will depend on what type of assets / income that he has and if you are not sure you can ask that he attend at court for questioning so you can find out.

There are court fees in relation to issuing a claim and enforcement. The court issue fee for a £500 claim using money claims online is £35

You can ask the court also make orders that he also pays any costs that you have had to pay.

Let me know if I can assist you further

kind regards


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