Would like to know if I can sue a handyman whom we paid for his services in advance and he up and quit on us (unfinished project
2 attorney answers
Yes you can sue and the easiest and fastest way to do so would be the Justice of the Peace courts if the claim is for under $10,000. I would start by sending a demand letter out to the contractor certified mail to the address you have on file. Not only does this get the ball rolling in preparation for suit it also can assist in verifying their contact information which will be required for service if you do proceed with a lawsuit.
Yes. If your claim totals $10,000 or less, you can sue in small claims court, which is the Justice of the Peace court that serves your area. Search the internet for "Texas Justice of the Peace courts for [your county]" and you should be able to find an address for the JP courts in your county. Visit the court clerk/JP court clerk for your county and they will assist you in filing the suit. It will cost you money to file and serve the defendant, as well as your time to go to a hearing, so if you believe the handyman is pretty much broke, take that into consideration. Getting a judgment in court is one thing, but often times the bigger problem is collecting on that judgment. The law does have remedies, but they are not magic, so if the person has no appreciable assets, you may just end up with a piece of paper.
This answer is for general purposes only and is not intended to constitute legal advice and does not result in the formation of an attorney-client relationship. Without additional facts regarding the underlying transactions in question, no definitive answer is possible. Additionally, the authoring attorney is not a member of the Bar of the State of Maine. It is recommended that you contact a local attorney in that state and provide full facts to get a definitive answer.