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Signed a Contract for $17000 worth of work, delivery slow, late, terrible quality - Can I get out of it?

Andy Bell

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Feb 10, 2019
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Zihuantanejo
Hi Everyone,

So I am going to post this here since this may be a stupid question and I may not even be able to get out of this contract so would be a waste of time to get a lawyer.

Basically i signed a contract for web design work and article writing. It was at a big innitial payment for the site then 6 payments per month at half the rate. I paid the first of 6 months. The contractor delivered a really shoddy website I could of bought on fiverr for $100 and then some one star articles the next month. I tried to contact him and say I don't want to continue but he says I have to keep paying him since I signed on for 6 months.

Now a few things to note.
1. I signed the contract but used a business name that isnt registered, ...my name is nowhere on the contract just the non registered company name above my signature.
2. I am Canadian, live in Mexico and the contract is for a UK company
3. The contractor delivered the 2nd months work 2 months late, aka nothing was done for 2 months... so maybe its a material breach of contract

Anyway I feel like im screwed here but if anyone thinks different and its worth getting a lawyer let me know, interesting to get some other fellow entrepreneurs opinions.

Cheers!
 

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Sizemore

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Jul 21, 2019
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Hi Everyone,

So I am going to post this here since this may be a stupid question and I may not even be able to get out of this contract so would be a waste of time to get a lawyer.

Basically i signed a contract for web design work and article writing. It was at a big innitial payment for the site then 6 payments per month at half the rate. I paid the first of 6 months. The contractor delivered a really shoddy website I could of bought on fiverr for $100 and then some one star articles the next month. I tried to contact him and say I don't want to continue but he says I have to keep paying him since I signed on for 6 months.

Now a few things to note.
1. I signed the contract but used a business name that isnt registered, ...my name is nowhere on the contract just the non registered company name above my signature.
2. I am Canadian, live in Mexico and the contract is for a UK company
3. The contractor delivered the 2nd months work 2 months late, aka nothing was done for 2 months... so maybe its a material breach of contract

Anyway I feel like im screwed here but if anyone thinks different and its worth getting a lawyer let me know, interesting to get some other fellow entrepreneurs opinions.

Cheers!
I’m not a lawyer, but if your name is not on it and the company isn’t formed yet then I wouldn’t think the contract is not any good. Could be wrong since you did sign it... was it the contractors contract or yours?

If milestones in development were missed it seems like you would have an out. I bet you could talk your way out of this situation if you are just looking to cut your losses.

Also, 6 months to develop a web site? For the web developers on the forum... does it often take that long to build a website? Must be highly technical functionality.
 

ChrisV

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I would just stop paying him and if he has an issue he can take you to court. Did you pay by Credit Card? Put in a claim saying he didnt deliver the quality promised, and they may be able to reverse the payment already sent. But don't listen to me I'm a dick. Talk to a lawyer.
 

LittleWolfie

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The contractor delivered a really shoddy website I could of bought on fiverr for $100

There are $100 websites supplied on fiverr? I must have a look at these.

Also, 6 months to develop a web site?

For the web developers on the forum... does it often take that long to build a website? Must be highly technical functionality.

I built one in an afternoon though it was just a simple wordpress site, and I'm constantly changing it based on feedback trying to get things right.

. Full time,6 months I could build and host my own server running the bloody thing handcoded in vi.

Hell, I deployed a SaaS in less time than that(docker is awesome) though it was single tenant,single instance.

. Though if I was only spending 20 minutes a day per client , I could see it taking a while.

How much time is the contractor giving you?

All the web designers I have corresponded with in my research indicate that most of the time is in finding out what the client wants.

Once they start adding in revisions, and changes prices shoot up,which incidentally has helped give me my idea for a usp.
 

NMdad

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Sounds like the contractor should be refunding you the money instead of asking for more. That's some balls to deliver shoddy stuff 2 months late, then ask for more money.

Given your experience so far, my hunch is that it's unlikely he'll pursue any formal action, and even if he does, you've (I'm assuming) documented what he did & didn't do & the timeframe it took him to deliver anything. That should be sufficient for any small claims court--but I doubt it'll even get that far. I think he's all bluster, just to try & wring more money out of you.

I'd consider this tuition for the education/lesson you learned. It's painful, but we've all paid this kind of tuition for one thing or another. You've paid, so move on. Find another developer, test them on a small task, then progressively larger tasks, and pay by the milestone.
 

ChrisV

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And with the lawyer you just need him to answer one question.

You're in Mexico. He's in the UK. You really think he's gonna fly down to take you to court? But I don't know the jurisdictions and you may have court over there, but either way it's a huge mess that he'll likely not want to deal with. He'd rather just find a new customer than deal with all that court crap for a few thousand bucks.

Like I said, I'd reverse the CC transaction on the basis of he didn't deliver what was promised.
 

Stargazer

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Hi

Hopefully I have attached this PDF for you. :)

You don't have Consumer Rights as a business in the UK however page 2 section 3 Misrepresentation could be relevant.

I think it is a charlatan outfit you have ended up with, you can let me know who they are by PM if you wish and I can check some things out.

I would also hazard a guess that you being in Mexico would lead to no action being taken, especially if you simply shut down the company that made the contract.

Dan

PS: UK CC Company would not reverse charges as you are not covered by Consumer Rights Act as a business in the UK but your CC company and laws may be different.
 

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Andy Bell

Andy Bell

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Feb 10, 2019
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Zihuantanejo
Hi

Hopefully I have attached this PDF for you. :)

You don't have Consumer Rights as a business in the UK however page 2 section 3 Misrepresentation could be relevant.
Thank you everyone for the advice wow really appreciate all the replies.

Im going to follow the advice here and take it as some education and loss. I paid using direct bank deposit no credit card payments months ago so I cant get that money back but I will send an email saying the work was miss-represented and the results were not what I was expecting and late and I will be moving on.

If he goes ahead and sues I will threaten to counter-sue, looking at some information I think I might even have a good case here for my countersuit in retaliation.

Though I think its right and he wont get that far pursuing a suit cross borders.

To Clear up - The website was the first deliverable in the first month the second was search engine optimization work and articles on a monthly basis. For a website built for seo it was horrific, F from google pagespeed with speed scores of Fs all around every test with a page load time of 40 seconds. For a site built for google optimization this is crazy. Also elements like broken images, broken menus, a website that I would never present to a client. The SEO work was a massive email blast campaign looking for backlinks. (actually this campaign he did violates the UK Spam act which could be further motivation to not pursue legal action since he would be criminalizing himself)

Live and learn, next time I will be much more vigilant before getting a contractor, and avoid any long term contracts for work like this.
 

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