Fortunately, I believe your options are limited to small claims court where you can file an action for up to $10,000 and proceed within a short time. If you feel the value of your case is worth $9000 it probably would not be possible to find an experienced lawyer based upon this low value of the case. Also the attorney fees would seriously erode into the net you would receive into your pocket. You may want to see if your contract has a provision for the prevailing party to receive attorney fees and costs.
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You need to call a CA lawyer and have a more detailed (and confidential) discussion.
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Wherean dhow you file (with or without an attorney) depend on a couple of factors, i.e. how much you ae suing for and whether or not you can afford increased filing fees and attorney fees. Good luck.
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