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New York Construction Law Blog

Can you walk away from a construction job?

Posted by Karl Silverberg | May 31, 2021 | 0 Comments

You take a job building a home for a new client. It seems fine at first, and you spend a few weeks starting the project. 

Quickly, though, you realize that this just isn't someone you can work with. Maybe they keep changing their mind, accusing you of poor workmanship, altering the scope of the project or doing something else disruptive. You want no part of it, but can you just walk away from the job?

What does your contract say?

This is really something that you want to address upfront. Your contract can be created with a number of different clauses saying that you're allowed to stop work for various reasons. One of the main ones is if a client stops paying or is too slow with the payments. There's a point where you may want to step back from the project to see if you can get them to pay or to cut your losses. 

But your contract should say exactly why you can give up on the job. Just thinking that a client is frustrating to work with isn't enough. They may be well within their rights to make alterations to the project, as long as they're willing to pay for them. You may breach the contract if you quit working for a reason like this, so be wary about when and why you stop a job. 

What if there's a dispute?

Even if your contract has stop-work clauses, you may find yourself in a dispute with the client. Be sure you know exactly what legal options you have at this time. When your company's future and your reputation is at stake, it is essential to work with an experienced attorney. 

About the Author

Karl Silverberg

Karl Silverberg Contact Me: (631) 778-6077 Email me Practice Areas: Construction Law Biography Prior to law school, Mr. Silverberg worked as a professional engineer, and has eight years of experience working as a structural engineer on public sector transportation projects. Mr. Silver...


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