May Have To File A Lien On A Property, Looking For Some Advice

Long story short:

A contractor that we have worked together with on one project in the past calls us up. "I need fire ran in a project, and I need it by three days, it is urgent". We take a look at the project and we see that the ceilings are solid cement. I advised him that by law being that the ceilings are higher then 10ft, we do not need to put it in conduit, however it will be much neater if we do. But it will be an additional $1000.

He says that he wants it done cheap as he doesn't have the budget for it. I get this all in emails, with me advising him that it wont be so nice. We do the work, no contract was signed (I know, a mistake). Fast forward two months, he asks us to do the final. I send him a copy of the current bill, and state in it that it does not include the final. He says ok, when everything is done it will be paid. This again is all in emails.

Finish the work, send him adjusted bill. He firsts complains about tax, that no one ever charges him tax. I say give me a capital improvement cert and I wont charge either. He then complains that the bill is too high, and he only wants to pay the original bill. He then says, that the wire is not neat. I told him, that you could have told us that the past two months, and I had warned him that the wire would not be neat if it was not in a conduit. I said, please send me an email confirming that you will pay the bill, as well as a list of things that you feel need to be fixed up. Once I get that, I'll have someone there within a day. The job site is 4 hours round trip away and don't want to have to send someone there for a quick fix.

No reply. Send him another email the following week. No reply. Now a month later, I send him another email. He replies, "we did not hear back from you, so we had to hire someone to clean up the work, and we had to pay him a premium, send us your bill and we will deduct what we had to pay him".

I replied, that I was waiting to hear back from him, and that I had sent him numerous requests. His reply was "It is not my job to show you what needs to be fixed, there is a reason why I hired you".

I know I am not going to get anywhere with him. The entire bill on the project was about $12K. The building according to tax records is worth $30 million. So my plan is to file a lien on the property.

While I know nothing is guaranteed, what do you feel my chances of success are?

Thank you

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