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Question DetailsAsked on 4/19/2017

i was took for my money by Going up construction inc

I worked for the company as a sub contractor for the last 2 years towards the end the operator of the company Kayla and Jaime soto did not pay for a lot of work adding to about 15000$ among other contractors who were not paid and then after all this refuses to give tax info

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This is Robin in Member Care. Thanks contacting us at Angie's List!

I'm sorry to hear you had this experience. I have sent this information along to our Service Provider Integrity team where they can track negative provider behavior and take action when or if necessary.

Thanks again for posting. Have a good day.

Answered 3 years ago by Member Services


Obviously a lawyer would be needed to give you a definitive answer, and if yuo are considering going weith an attorney be sure to get him on board before doing any of the following so you don't prejudice your case or prematurely tick the GC off. For the $ amount involved an attorney will likely be needed to protect your interests, but some possibilities are listed below - aside from never letting your accounts receivable from a single general contractor like that get run up so high in the first place. If you were doing that much work, and over a couple of years, you should have been doing monthly billings, and cut them off if they started not paying them:

1) send them a certified, return receipt, signature required cumulative invoice with demand for payment of the balance, noting it is past due [assuming you have previously invoiced this work] and calling to note and annotating any applicable interest due under the terms of your contract with them, and stating it will be treated as an overdue debt subject to legal collection action as of X date (typically 7-10 days from mailing date) if not paid in full by then.

And if there is still work to be done by you, perhaps noting that due to the history of non-payment, you will be requiring payment in advance for the remaining work.

2) if there was a requirement that they have a payment or contractor's fulfillment or similar type of bond in your contract with them, or they have a contractor's or performance bond with the project owner, put in a claim with their bonding company. This should get rapid response - because if the bonding company pays off the unpaid subs and suppliers, they then almost always go after the company to repay what they paid out, and are generally a lot better at it than subcontractors or vendors.

3) file a complaint with the state licensing board, assuming that the type of work Going Up Construction does (or did on the projects you were working on) requires a contractor's license in your state (whether or not they are so licensed) - will not directly get you money, but the pressure and threat of losing their contractor's license might get some response.

4) ditto with state or local Business License board - which can get their Business License pulled. Again, does not directly contribute to you getting your money but puts the pressure on them.

For both 3) and 4), however, especially if they are on the verge of going out of business anyway, doing that (if their licenses are pulled or suspended) can kill the company off and put it into bankruptcy, possibly reducing your chance of recovery.

5) File a claim with their insurance company for breach of contract under their General Liability or Inland Marine (as applicable) coverage.

6) This one perhaps unfairly puts the homeowners in a bind, but probably (asuming the company is on the verge of bankruptcy anyway) protects your interests the best - providing you are following any provisions in your contract regarding filing of liens, file a contractor's/mechanic's lien (name variable by state) on the properties for which you are due payment for work done. This put the homeowners in a bind, but also means THEY will then put pressure on the contractor to pay you.

7) Depending on your relationship with the contractor and state law, you may be able to file a lien against the GC (if it has any physical asseets) and maybe if it is an individual proprietorship rather than a LLC or a corporation (but sounds fromthe name like a corporation so maybe no way to go after the owners if they have kept their finances and the corporate ones separate and clean) to protect your claim, and possibly then execute the lien (foreclose on the lien) to get your money.

8) Get an attorney on board and sue for payment.

9) You want to get on the ball quickly, especially if going to do liens because in some states liens are paid off in the order registered (not pro-rata amongst all liens) so you want to be first in line amongst the other contractors if you can. Ditto on filing a lawsuit. Course, if he does go into bankruptcy then all creditors are thrown together regardless of claim date and are paid based on priority of claims, not first filed comes first. I would keep an eye on the bankruptcy filing on the appropriate court calendar/filings website to see if they file for bankruptcy - either for the company or individually, in case they do so but do not list you as a creditor.

10) If you have materials delivered but not installed at any jobsite, might be time to consider securing them offsite as possible protection against non-payment.


On the tax issue, consult your tax preparer - I would send a certified return receipt signature required letter to the GC requesting the tax forms. If they don't send it to you ASAP, you can send a letter to the IRS stating he has refused to issue tax reporting documents due to you (presumably a 1099-MISC in your case). Send certified mail return receipt to get proof you sent it and it was received by them, then include a xerox of that letter and proof of mailing with your tax return, along with a brief statement of the total amount of taxable compensation you believe you were paid for that year by that contractor (or include that in the letter). [Or amount you were paid or due in the tax year even if not paid, if using accrual method accounting - though that gets into whether you think this money is recoverable or not, which controls when and whether you accrue it or not - talk to tax advisor on that if using accrual method accounting].

Here are a couple of IRS instructions on 1099's and what to do if you have not received one by tax filing time:

Of course, keep good documentation (copies of checks received / invoices and matching deposit slips listing the checks, etc) to record what payments you have received from them and when in case the IRS comes back against you on it. Also copies of any correspondence of communications with the GC. In some cases, bankscan provide you with electronic copies of the deposited checks if you did not copy them before depositing.

Answered 3 years ago by LCD

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