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Old 16-02-2014, 10:16   #16
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Re: Florida Consumer Protection Rules Help.

One step csy37... Sorry to be pedantic but June1 is 3.5 months away. For insurance reasons, I was planning on being well south by then.

BandB... I've always been the nice guy, I've found it better to deal with people as equals and to afford them trust and respect. In the past, I have got better results from my crews with this approach. I'll get my wife to speak to them this week, she's somewhat less trusting than I.

Vasco, thanks for that..I had misconstrued your abrupt language in the first post as being one of gloating pleasure. Clearly, I was wrong.

Let's see what this week brings...my fingers are crossed for a resolution.

Otherwise, it's off to Home Depot to buy an angle grinder so that I can cut down the whole structure and get the hell away.
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Old 16-02-2014, 11:31   #17
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Re: Florida Consumer Protection Rules Help.

Whatever work you are having done to your boat should conform to standards.

Is this a real company you are dealing with - business license, insurance, etc? If they aren't, you could get the authorities involved. If they are, you could get the Better Business Bureau involved or their insurance carrier.

I would use the ABYS and NFPA standards as these are both Federal standards for boating. They are written out and the work done on your boat can be check against what work actually occured and what work should have occured.

Make a list of everything that is wrong, photograph it and docuement it as best you can. Then go and look up the Standards that the work must comply with in ABYS / NFPA.

Then go and hire a good NAMS surveyor or someone recommended by Boats US (or similiar) and have them do a survey limited to the specifics of the work performed to date and whether it meets standards or not.

You can now take this work list and the problems found by the surveyor to a shipyard and get a written quote as to the cost to repair/finish/bring up to standard the work done.

With your notes, docuements, photos, survey and cost quote in hand, go and file a claim against the contractor (or whatever they are) in small claims court.

You can represent yourself in small claims court, it is more "user friendly" that other courts, it is much cheaper to file, etc, and the entire process/time period is much faster.

There are dollar amount limits to how much you can recover if you win, but they may be high enough to make it worth while. However, recovering any money even if you "win" your case may be problematical.

Good luck.
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Old 16-02-2014, 11:34   #18
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Re: Florida Consumer Protection Rules Help.

Seems to me that the person billing you has to get the money out of you, not the other way around, so they should be the ones willing to negotiate. Do document everything. Keep any paperwork and take photos. Keep records of work with dates. Don't get confrontational with them, except over the quality of the work.

Once you sail away, they're going to be the ones having to find you.

That said, it makes sense to come to a reasonable arrangement if you can. The most important thing, however, is to get quality work done.
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Old 16-02-2014, 11:34   #19
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Re: Florida Consumer Protection Rules Help.

neelie, you sound like a nice guy. i am too, most of the time. also sounds like you're having a cockpit enclosure or maybe a radar arch built and it's not going well. here's a suggestion.


1. tell the builder you are not satisfied with his work. show him exactly why.

2. tell him you want the work done correctly and completed in the next ten days.

3. say nothing more. buy that angle grinder.

4. eleven days later leave for the bahamas, with or without the 'construction'. if necessary, cut it away at sea and drop it in the gulf stream....

5. whatever you do, DO NOT GIVE HIM ANY MORE MONEY NO MATTER WHAT HE DEMANDS, THREATENS, CAJOLES, OR CODDLES. money is the only advantage you have over him....

6. and if you are, in the end, dissatisfied, be sure to post your story here, including names and addresses, so the rest of us won't have to go through this too.
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Old 16-02-2014, 11:41   #20
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Re: Florida Consumer Protection Rules Help.

by the way, what doug brown and some others have said is probably the correct path to take. but do you have one or two years of your life that you want to give up while hanging around there waiting for the lawyers and courts to rob you of some more of your cruising kitty when in the end you may get little or nothing for your troubles? and even if you can force this guy to do fix his poor work or maybe get your money back, how will you recover the months/years/dollars you have spent in this pursuit?

ten days. just don't divulge your plans to him. then, instead of chasing him, he'll be in the position of having to chase you....
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Old 16-02-2014, 11:53   #21
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Re: Florida Consumer Protection Rules Help.

Communicate in writing.

Oh and as to the person saying you have control because you hold the money. Well, not really true in this situation. What the man doing the work holds is the boat so worth far more. Plus he has a mechanic's lien. You need to find the best solution you can and then move on. But he has the power, not you.

One thing that hasn't been mentioned as you've talked of hurricane season which seems irrelevant at this point, when do you and when does the boat have to leave the country based on current permits and visas?
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Old 16-02-2014, 12:20   #22
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Re: Florida Consumer Protection Rules Help.

As a former contract welder, at least in Oklahoma and Texas I could file a mechanics lien against your property, essentially meant I could have it locked up until this was settled. Before you just take off, might want to buy an hours worth of a Lawyers time to see what kind of trouble this could put you in. I think possibly a lot, IF the OP pushed the issue
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Old 16-02-2014, 12:28   #23
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Re: Florida Consumer Protection Rules Help.

There are usually pretty stringent criteria for mechanics liens. Yes, you should try and work things out, but they aren't a license to steal. The contractor has to prove their case just like you do. You should try and settle in good faith, but I wouldn't be all that afraid.

Keep good records.
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Old 16-02-2014, 12:35   #24
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Re: Florida Consumer Protection Rules Help.

Neelie....as a64 states, a hour with a "Maritime" attorney would be worth your time. Your first visit is normally free. In Southeast Fl you should be able to locate a "Maritime" attorney easily.

Good luck....always keepa Smilin...
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Old 16-02-2014, 12:44   #25
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Re: Florida Consumer Protection Rules Help.

Quote:
Originally Posted by a64pilot View Post
As a former contract welder, at least in Oklahoma and Texas I could file a mechanics lien against your property, essentially meant I could have it locked up until this was settled. Before you just take off, might want to buy an hours worth of a Lawyers time to see what kind of trouble this could put you in. I think possibly a lot, IF the OP pushed the issue
And let me assure you that those who typically perform in the manner of the mechanic in this case are usually those with lots of experience on mechanic's liens. Meanwhile the legitimate boatyard which provides written contracts and sticks to those may have never filed any outside of having their attorney file them on foreclosures and repossessions.
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Old 16-02-2014, 12:47   #26
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Re: Florida Consumer Protection Rules Help.

I've never filed a mechanics lien, just know of their existence is all, I assume taking off without paying immediately pretty much makes you guilty and is something I don't think should be done
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Old 16-02-2014, 13:14   #27
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Re: Florida Consumer Protection Rules Help.

Quote:
Originally Posted by onestepcsy37 View Post
"he knows we are constrained by the hurricane season."


virginia boy - some jobs you just need to do yourself. replacing turnbuckles does not require a rigger. glassing over underwater 'holes' is something you could/should probably do yourself. i've found that yards/yardworkers need to be supervised almost constantly, work questioned, charges disputed, schedules set down and adhered to and even threats sometimes of not paying for incomplete or shoddy work. and the boating community seems to be divided into two groups; the sailors who actually sail/cruise, and the land sharks who prey upon them....
Regretably I've spent a good part of the last year in poor health and am limited in what I can do. I do what I can within my physical and financial limits, but It's a 200 dollar cab ride (round trip) to the boat so often there is no savings to be had by doing it myself. I agree that work needs to be closely supervised, but is not always practical. Cruiser or predatory land shark..one can't often tell the difference until bitten.
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Old 16-02-2014, 13:37   #28
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Re: Florida Consumer Protection Rules Help.

The industry is rife with issues for sure. The ONLY way to get a job done properly or to what you wanted is to be there and monitor what's going on daily... making adjustments as it progresses. (Ditto for many places in the world....) Having said that... forget the schedule... it will NEVER be on schedule.
At this point you will likely have to use what you got, cut it off, or take it somewhere else and pay to get it amended.
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Old 16-02-2014, 13:41   #29
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Re: Florida Consumer Protection Rules Help.

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Originally Posted by virginia boy View Post
Regretably I've spent a good part of the last year in poor health and am limited in what I can do. I do what I can within my physical and financial limits, but It's a 200 dollar cab ride (round trip) to the boat so often there is no savings to be had by doing it myself. I agree that work needs to be closely supervised, but is not always practical. Cruiser or predatory land shark..one can't often tell the difference until bitten.
Well, I do know one person trying to supervise from a thousand miles away who was saved from a very bad possibility by the cams (accessible by web) installed on his boat.
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Old 16-02-2014, 14:35   #30
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Re: Florida Consumer Protection Rules Help.

Is the boat in the water or on the hard? I know in my state a written quote is required or the place performing the work cannot hold your vehicle for payment. Of course getting them to realease it may not be that easy.
If in the water why not write tehm a letter stating specifially what they did in error and asking if they wil correct it, if they say no just take off. What can they do? Am I naieve?
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