From Our Perspective: Rock-Solid Contract Saves Roofing Company $100,000

Boyd Rolfson
By: Boyd Rolfson
PublishedMay 30, 2024
3 minute read

Robinson & Henry’s knowledgeable attorneys give their professional insight in “From Our Perspective” where we take a closer look at successful outcomes achieved by our attorneys. We’ll also share our legal expertise on other cases and legal issues in Colorado.

In this episode, Robinson & Henry Litigation Partner Boyd Rolfson discusses how a well-drafted contract protected our client, a roofing company, from a $100,000 loss. 

In this case, a large roofing company was involved in a dispute with homeowners. The Colorado Court of Appeals ended up hearing the case and ruled in our client’s favor. 

The decision resolved the immediate dispute and provided a strong legal precedent affirming the validity of our client’s contract terms. 

The successful resolution of this contract dispute benefited the roofing company financially and strengthened its legal standing in future contract negotiations and disputes. 

This case highlights important aspects of contract law and sets a precedent for similar disputes. Companies in the home repair industry can learn from this case, ensuring their contracts are clear and legally sound, and acting quickly when disputes arise.

Past results afford no guarantee of future results; each matter is different and must be judged on its own merits. Facts are those of an actual Robinson & Henry litigation case. 

Question: Boyd, thank you for joining me. Tell me more about our client and why they reached out to us.

Boyd: This was a case where there was about $46,000 owed to our client. The homeowners refused to pay because they had some issues with the terms, the price terms in the contract. They believe that the price in the contract was not clear enough for them. Also, they had some problems with the workmanship that was done on the case and so they refused to pay our client. 

Question: What were the main legal arguments presented in court? 

Boyd: Well, the main case was a breach of contract case that our client had performed the work and that they had refused to pay. Therefore, they were in breach of their contract. There was a written contract between the parties that had clear provisions, but there were some disputes regarding the provisions. And so therefore, those were the main issues of the court case. 

Question: You mentioned one of the big keys was the dispute about the workmanship. How was that explained in the contract?

Boyd: That’s right, so the contract had clear terms and a provision that the workmanship would be in a reasonable, workmanlike manner, which is the standard of care when it comes to contractors and workers. And that was in dispute. They had some minor complaints and problems with the workmanship. 

However, the court found that because the city inspector came out, inspected all the work, all the work was done properly and had passed the city’s inspection, that the work was found to be completely in a workmanlike manner. 

One of the other disputes was the homeowner had complained that the price was not clear in the contract. The contract actually stated a price that whatever the insurance claim was would be the price of the roofing contract. The court found that was clear, that was determinable and therefore found that that was a proper contract amount.

Question: But the homeowners appealed this case?

Boyd: As what happens when you’re not successful in a case, they felt that maybe the appeals court would see it differently and so appealed this case to the Colorado Court of Appeals. 

Question: And what was their decision? 

Boyd: The Colorado Court of Appeals agreed with the lower court that not only was the workmanship that was done on the project was done in a workmanlike manner, done properly as due to the passing of the inspection from the city where the home was located. Also found that the terms, since they were determinable, there was an exact amount that could be determined for the price of the contract that it didn’t have to be an exact dollar and cents amount in the contract. 

Therefore, they found that the contract price amount was correct. The Appeals court found in favor of the roofing company and found the homeowner to be in breach of contract and ordered the homeowner to pay the full amount of the contract to our client.

Question: How significant was this decision for our client? 

Boyd: It was a very significant decision. Not only did they win in that particular case, it also provided an Appeals court opinion basically stating that their contract was valid and enforceable. Additionally, the Court of Appeals ruled that our client was entitled to its full reasonable attorneys’ fees.

Question: If someone is watching, say, a roofing company and they’re in a similar situation, what advice would you have? 

Boyd: I would say that first of all review your contract that you have, make sure you have a written contract. Make sure the contract is clear, and that the provisions are clear. I would advise them to have it reviewed by an attorney to make sure that they’re enforceable. Or if it does go to court or if there is a dispute, that the terms are clear and in favor of the roofing company. 

I would also recommend that if there is a dispute that does arise that the roofing company acts quickly, there’s a lot of remedies that can be exercised. However, over time some of these remedies are either extinguished by law or are no longer available to the roofing company.

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