Can I get money back from a contractor who didn’t do the work?

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Lake Charles, LA (KPLC) – Legal Corner answers viewer questions about civil matters.

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ASK: My contractor didn’t finish work on my house and his job was sloppy. Now he won’t answer my calls and I’ll have to hire someone else to do the job. Can I get my money back? I have no contract with him or his company.

REPLY: Perhaps. Maybe not.

Here are rules you must follow (most learned the hard way) when hiring a contractor to work on your home: (1) Have a contract! A quote is better than nothing – it’s not a contract, it’s a….. quote! A contract will better spell out the obligations of each party (how much money for how much work), the type of work to be done, when the work is to start, and when it is to be finished. And most importantly, how and where the parties agree to settle disputes and whether or not the prevailing party will receive legal fees. (2) Hire a Louisiana firm if possible. If you hire an out-of-state contractor, you must be able to locate them in order to service them. They also need to know what type of assets they have – difficult to determine if they are in another state. And even if you win your lawsuit outright, you’ll need to hire an additional attorney to collect it in the state

ASK: I was told that if I fish freshwater I need a freshwater fishing license, but if I fish saltwater I need both a freshwater and a saltwater license. Is that correct?

REPLY: Type of. In order for anyone over the age of 16 to be able to fish, you need a basic fishing license. This includes using a cast net, a frog gig, a trot line and of course a rod and reel. However, there is an area in Louisiana known as the “Saltwater Line” that separates the freshwater and saltwater areas. If you are fishing south of the line, you must also purchase a saltwater license in addition to the basic fishing license. Licenses are sold starting June 1st and expire on June 30th of the following year. For more information, visit the Wildlife and Fisheries website: www.wlf.louisiana.gov

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