Legal Question in Legal Ethics in Massachusetts

We had water bubbling up from the ground, we hired a plumber who came in stating he needed to rent a tractor to dig up the pipe. He then stated it wasn't a pipe it was the pump which he tried to fix without asking us, which in the end we found out he was not authorized to fix the pump in the first place. So basically he just drained the water out of the pump, and charged us $1100 which we paid him because we felt we were backed into a corner, we had no idea. We then had to pay $588 to have the pump fixed. He said he would give us $350 back because he was not giving us the money back for the tractor rental-$450 he did not even use. Now we find out the pipe really is broken but he never bothered to dig it up and look so now we have to pay someone else to fix the pipe. What are we legally responsible to pay him for?

Asked on 6/20/11, 4:58 am

1 Answer from Attorneys

Craig Ornell Ornell Law Office P.C.

First is there a contract or work order that outlines the scope of work to be preformed? Is this plumber licensed in MA? ( You can check by going to the Mass Professional Licensure Board website) doing this will also tell you if there are compliants against this license, or if there are restrictions on this license. Did this plumber pull permits, contact dig safe etc.. Based on the information you have provided, you could file a 93A for unfair and deceptive business practices, to award treble damages. There is the potential for a civil suit that if properly executed can award you all of your monies returned, with Attorney fees. You can also find more information regarding a 93A demand letter on teh Attorney General's website.

Finally is he is a licensed plumber you can file a complaint with the licensure board.

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Answered on 6/20/11, 2:31 pm

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