The Restoration Survivor: Seven Survival Tips for Today's Legal Environment

Tip #1: Throw away all of your work authorizations.

Once upon a time, it was okay to start on a job with nothing

more than a work authorization; that is, a form that gives

permission for a company to come onto a property and perform

work. A work authorization is not a payment contract.To secure

the right to payment, the Restoration Survivor has a bona fide

contract that spells out how much the customer will need to pay

and when (plus a bunch of other bad stuff that will happen if he

or she doesn’t pay—see below).

An assignment of insurance benefits is not a commitment

to pay money.What’s worse, work authorizations create

evidence to support the age-old claim, “I thought you were

working for the insurance company.”

Work with a qualified attorney to develop a contract with a

straightforward title such as “Restoration Service Agreement,”

“Remediation Contract,” “Service Contract,” or something

else that sounds binding. Use “authorizations” as separate

forms for things like the disposal of contents, access to

property occupied by third parties, and the use of chemicals.

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