As the old adage goes, “a man who represents himself has a fool for a client.” The same concept applies when a contractor who is involved in a payment dispute elects to draft their own demand letter. In this three-part article, a Charlotte contractor attorney is discussing the pitfalls of drafting your own demand and how a construction law firm can be of assistance. In the first part, we explained why you should never use a boilerplate letter. In this part, we will discuss a few more reasons why you shouldn’t draft your own demand letter. For payment disputes, consult a Charlotte contractor lawyer at Cotney Construction Law.
3) It’s Too Personal
When you’re involved in a payment dispute, it’s understandable that you may be extremely frustrated with the position you are in. You’re likely stressed and sleeping less at night as you consider your options for being compensated for the hard work you’ve already completed. Considering that you are emotionally invested in this dispute, you may not be the best person to represent your own best interests by drafting a demand letter.
A passionate demand letter stating why you should be paid immediately for your work may sound great to the person writing it; however, to a third party, this type of letter may come off sounding unprofessional or even threatening in nature. When you are personally affected by a payment dispute, it’s best to allow a highly experienced legal professional to draft your demand. They will understand how to be diplomatic, but also assertive about your rights. By removing emotions from the content in your letter, you are more likely to achieve a quicker and more satisfying resolution to your dispute.
4) They’re Not Committed to the Next Step
When you have an experienced Charlotte construction litigation lawyer draft your demand letter, it sends a clear message to a delinquent owner. The owner will at least have to acknowledge that the contractor has taken the next step towards litigation by hiring a legal professional to represent them in this matter. This action alone motivates many owners to resolve the dispute in order to prevent the contractor from pursuing legal damages resulting in expensive litigation.
If you’re sending a demand letter, remember that the entire point of doing so is to encourage the person on the other side of the dispute to realize that you are not afraid to pursue a legal avenue to seek repayment. Once an owner sees a professional letterhead from an established law firm and realizes that you are serious enough to hire a lawyer, they are much more likely to resolve the dispute immediately.
For more information about demand letters, please read part three.
Disclaimer: The information contained in this article is for general educational information only. This information does not constitute legal advice, is not intended to constitute legal advice, nor should it be relied upon as legal advice for your specific factual pattern or situation.