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Question DetailsAsked on 1/6/2018

I live in sf ca. My contractor refuses to give me his receipts for the kitchen remodel. Is this legal?

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Two factors here - the following two links to previous similar questions go over them in more detail.


First - if the contract terms were "fixed price" (taking into account any change orders), so he was getting paid a certain amount tp perform a certain scope of work (including materials and labor and overheads/profit, etc), then as long as you got that scope of work performed how much it actually cost him in materials is irrelevant and you are not entitled to the documents. If he ended up paying more than he originally estimated he made more on the job or lost money, if he paid less then tht job was a winner for him.


On the other hand, if this was a "cost-plus" or "time and materials" type job where you were paying him for the materials as the job needed them (with or without a contractually agreed-upon markup by him) then if wants to get paid he has to prove to you (by receipts/delivery invoices) what the materials that he is billing you for actually cost him. (And be sure to review for reasonableness, because shady contractors working under those terms sometimes buy and bill materias to their cost-plus jobs which actually were used on other fixed-price jobs or ones where he was overrunning on his bid amount, or were returned for cash or credit to his account and not used on your job.)

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Now - a second and totally separate issue:

Any items which require proof of purchase for warranty purposes - either to initially file the warranty registration or to make a warranty claim from the manufacturer down the road, for the "delivery" of the product to be completed by him to you he has to (under the Uniform Commercial Code, which is in effect in all states but Louisiana as I recall, and maybe even there by now) provide you with the necessary paperwork for that - including any contractor signoff or certification as to installation. (For instance, some roofing and siding product warranty registrations require a contractor signing off on a statement that he installed it according ot the manufacturer's installation instructions.) Depending on manufacturer terms, a xerox copy may suffice, or a xerox with the installer certifying to the installation date sometimes (common with appliances which may have sat unsold for some time since manufacture or before turn-over to the homeowner), but in some cases you have to be able to provide the original sales invoice.


Under law, he cannot retain these with the argument that any warranty claim has to go through him - he cannot "reserve" manufacturer (as opposed to any Contractor warranty he offers with the job) warranty claim work to his company that way. You are free (though that of course does not then give you any Contractor warranty coverage) to go direct to the manufacturer (or through the original selling store in some cases, per warranty terms) or through another contractor of your choosing for any warranty claim.


Note any invoice or receipt should, if not printed on it by the store, include a signed and dated statement by the contractor showing the installation address, to prove it was installed in your property.


He also has to turn over you you any manuals or accessories which came with the item - generally applicable to appliances he installed.

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Answered 10 months ago by LCD




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