You have to do the work

Throughout the week I’m asked to offer advice on several different radio shows for listeners who have questions. This past week a listener had a question about a medical provider.

Joe Stanley of Stanley Law talks about substantial performance and paying for work that's incomplete

This couple had hired a midwife. And the midwife no-showed at the time of delivery of the baby. The midwife didn’t show up because she was at another labor. The listener wanted to know if they still had to pay the midwife’s bill?

No. Why would you have to pay the bill? The midwife may want to send you one, but there was no service ultimately rendered. In this case, I would write a letter back saying, you didn’t come and you didn’t provide the services. In this case the listener stated the midwife threatened to sue for the balance.

Why would you pay the bill? The midwife may want to send you one, but there was no service ultimately rendered.”

That’s an interesting argument, because you’re going to sue because you didn’t perform the contract. I mean, that’s a new one. There are people who make all sorts of absurd arguments. Just because you have a piece of paper, you have to substantially perform a contract before you can collect on it.
No performance doesn’t get you anything as far as I know… unless the law has changed since I woke up this morning, but I don’t think it has.

When you didn’t perform a contract, whether it’s in writing or verbal, it doesn’t matter. You didn’t do the work. You have to do it. If you don’t perform a contract, you can’t sue to collect on the contract because – you didn’t do the job. You didn’t show up. The legal word’s substantial performance. You have to substantially perform a contract before you can sue for it.

Joe Stanley is a personal injury attorney with the Team at Stanley Law with offices in Syracuse, Binghamton, Watertown, Rochester, and Montrose, PA. You can reach him with your questions at Joe@StanleyLawOffices.com or at 1-800-608-3333.

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