Why I Created a Blog
Given the fact that more and more blogs are flooding the Internet every day, why create another one? In my practice, I see homeowners and home contractors making the same mistakes over and over again. While doctors try to persuade patients that they should come in for a yearly physical, as a lawyer, I rarely see clients unless they are having a problem. Unfortunately, the problem has usually escalated by the time the client will call. If only I had the opportunity to exercise some "preventative" care, these matters might not end up being as complicated and costly.
For example, Massachusetts has a very strict home improvement contractor law that is weighted towards the "consumer" side of the transaction. Home contractors' contracts have to be in compliance with this law, or they will automatically be deemed to have violated the consumer protection statute, M.G.L. c. 93A. Any violation of 93A entitles the consumer to the possibility of double or triple damages, attorney's fees, interests and costs.
Let's say a contractor wants to bring a claim against a homeowner for failure to pay his bill. The homeowner will then counterclaim (sue) the contractor for not complying with the law. Even if the contractor has a legitimate claim, he or she runs the risk of paying double or treble damages, attorney's fees, interest and costs.
If that contractor were to consult with me in advance, and make sure that his contract is in compliance, he would be able to pursue his claim without facing a potentially damaging countersuit. That is a small example of how prevention can save quite a bit of money and hassle in the long run.
Obviously, if one is about to sign a contract for a small sum, consulting with an attorney might not be worth it. It amazes me however, that clients will sign contracts for $400,000.00 additions without having an attorney look over the paperwork, or calling more than one reference.
If my blog prevents one individual from getting into trouble, then the time I am spending on this topic will be worthwhile. Comments are welcome.