Many of us need craftsmen and laborers from time to time. It can be to renovate the bathroom, living room, kitchen, or another type of maintenance. If the work the craftsman performs is not as ordered or expected, you have rights under the Craftsman Services Act.
We always see that the typical craftsmen such as carpenters, plumbers, carpenters, masons, painters, and others often get into trouble with consumers.
Skjerpen Bugge Advokatfirma AS has in-depth experience in bringing cases against artisans – and the craftsmen’s service law.
If you are dissatisfied with the job a craftsman has done, contact us. We assess for free if you have a case.
How to proceed if you are not happy
First and foremost, one must look at what was agreed and whether the assignment was completed per the agreement. The agreement must state what the craftsman is to do, how it is to be done, and how much the job costs. If there is a discrepancy between what was agreed and what was done, the next step is to look at what rights you have under the Craftsmen’s Services Act.
What is in the Craftsmen’s Services Act
The Craftsman Services Act states how the craftsman must perform the job and your rights if you are not satisfied with the assignment. The craftsman must perform the job in a professionally good manner and maintain a high standard. He must look after your interests with due care.
That something is professional means that the job must be done in the same way as a craftsman with a long experience would perform the task. You can, therefore, not blame for lack of knowledge.
Professional work also applies if the price of the assignment was set below the market price.
There are a number of conditions you can complain about.
Typical examples are;
- The craftsman demands more money for the assignment than what was agreed
- Reject claims for additional payment
- The craftsman has not consulted with you to a large enough degree
- The work was started too late
- The craftsman was unable to complete the assignment at the agreed time
- The book does not comply with the requirements that follow from the law or regulations
Do not wait to complain.
If there is something about the work you are not happy with, you must complain immediately. The legal term is “to advertise.” The complaint must state what the problem is and what it is you demand. It does not have to be a lengthy report. A short email is sufficient. In principle, it is okay to complain about orally, but we strongly recommend that you complain in writing.
If the craftsman refuses to do anything about the complaint and later denies that you have complained, you may lose all your rights. It follows from section 22 of the Craftsmen’s Services Act that you must complain within a “reasonable time” after you “discovered or should have discovered the defect.” We will take a closer look at rights under the Craftsmen’s Services Act.
Section 23 of the Craftsmen’s Services Act – withholding payment
It follows from section 23 of the Craftsmen’s Services Act, “The consumer can withhold so much of the payment that it secures the consumer’s claims as a result of the defect.”
This means that you wait to pay the craftsman in full until he has corrected what is wrong.
Section 24 of the Craftsmen’s Services Act – correct the error.
It follows from section 24 of the Craftsmen Services Act, “The consumer may demand that the service provider rectify a defect in the service when it can happen without unreasonable cost or inconvenience to the service provider.”
If you want the craftsman to repair what has been done wrong, you can demand it. If the craftsman agrees to this solution, he must start work immediately. It is also a prerequisite that the craftsman does the job without you paying anything extra.
Section 25 of the Craftsmen’s Service Act – price reduction
It follows from section 25 of the Craftsmen’s Services Act, «If the defect is not rectified in accordance with section 24, the consumer can demand a price reduction. This does not apply if the consumer refuses correction that the consumer is obliged to receive ».
If the craftsman cannot correct the error or refuses to repair, you can demand a reduction in the price. The price reduction shall reflect the repair costs or the difference in value between the work that should have been performed and what was performed by the craftsman.
Section 26 of the Craftsmen’s Service Act – repeal
It follows from section 26 of the Craftsmen’s Services Act, “Instead of a price reduction, the consumer can terminate the agreement if the purpose of the service is significantly failed as a result of the defect.”
If the assignment was not performed as agreed, and you do not benefit from the work that was completed, you can terminate the agreement. It means that you do not have to pay anything for the job. It is a very severe reaction to the craftsman, and for that reason, it does not hold with small deviations.
Section 28 of the Craftsmen’s Service Act – liability for delay and defect
It follows from the Craftsmen’s Services Act § 28, «The consumer can claim compensation for loss as a result of delay or defect.»
You can claim compensation if the craftsman is late in the assignment or the assignment suffers from a defect (error).