As a roofing contractor, you sometimes may find yourself in
disputes with building owners or general contractors about how much
money is due according to a particular contract.
For example, you may argue your work is substantially complete
and, therefore, you are due the remaining contract balance while an
owner or general contractor may seek to impose miscellaneous
backcharges against the remaining contract balance. In an effort to
settle such a dispute, a building owner or general contractor may
send you correspondence enclosing a check for an amount less than
the balance you claim is due. The cover letter could indicate the
check is being offered in settlement of the dispute, and the check
may be marked "payment in full" on the memo line.
What should you do in such a situation? Can you cross out the
words "payment in full" or make a notation on the check that the
amount is disputed, cash the check and later file a lawsuit to
recover the balance you claim is due?
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