I am a freelance web developer, and I have a client who is refusing to pay the second half of a contract because they say the website isn't done. The site I created matches up with the mockup they approved at the beginning of our contract, and the contract specifically states that development will be done based on "the approved mockup provided on November 8th." I can supply the signed contract, which also states that "I will do one round of minor edits/changes," which I have done. I can supply the document where they listed the changes they wanted me to make, and the e-mail stating that I had completed those changes. They are claiming that they're entitled to further changes now, including changes that are not in the approved mockup, and refusing to pay the second half of the contract if I don't make those changes. What can I do? Will a lawyer draft a quick e-mail explaining that the documentation is clearly on my side? It's not a small amount of money remaining on the contract, but I would love to pay as little as possible in money and time to finish this process. Thanks to any and all who can offer some advice.
2 Answers from Attorneys
We would have review your entire agreement with them along with all the specific facts and details. It's advisable to get lawyers involved in the middle of a project unless you are certain that no resolution can be had here.
Before you take at action on your own, I suggest that you consult with a lawyer in private and discuss your objectives in more detail. You can start by calling around to several for a free phone consultation, get some insights then pick the best fit to work with.
If you would like to discuss further over a free phone consult, feel free to contact me anytime that is convenient.
Our firm is now referred by the American Bar Association (see under the New York section): http://www.americanbar.org/groups/delivery_legal_services/resources/programs_to_help_those_with_moderate_income.html
DISCLAIMER: this is not intended to be specific legal advice and should not be relied upon as such. No attorney-client relationship is formed on the basis of this posting.
They have you over a barrel. Contracts are often worth only the paper they're printed on. Do the extra work and bite the bullet and get paid.
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