I was hired to build a website for someone for $2500 - So I got a $1250 deposit and after 2 or 3 weeks things fell apart as they were rude and refused to corroborate.

Now he threatened to sue, seemed like he was just trying to scare me but idk for sure.

We never signed a contract but i did send him a brief with deliverables via email just to show him what he was getting and the price.

So i guess we agreed via email, however i finished the site and he ripped it apart and basically said that it wasn't good enough.

Can I get sued?

  • 3
    Anyone can sue anyone for anything.... whether they win anything is up to the judge.
    – Scott
    Commented Apr 26, 2016 at 6:26

2 Answers 2


In most US venues, $2500 is a small claim, so no attorneys will be involved. All courts recognize oral contracts, though written ones are obviously better. You could get sued, but the client has to sue in a court that has jurisdiction in the place where you live or work.

You finished the work. I'm going to assume you didn't get the other half of the money. You might be in just as good a position to sue as is your angry client, but the same conditions would apply to you. (a) No attorneys, because it's a small claim. (b) You have to sue in a court of competent jurisdiction where your client lives or works. (c) You might get a judgment, but never be able to collect.

I'm not an attorney.

  • @kyle Where are you located? Where is your client located?
    – zipzit
    Commented Apr 26, 2016 at 22:16

Short answer: Yes.

Longer Answer:

I am not a lawyer but your client could reasonably believe that the brief you sent and the deposit you received constitute an offer and acceptance or in other words, "a contract".

It is probably best to find out what the client wants you to do before making any decisions.

For example, your client may want to hold you to the contract ("specific performance") and continue with the project until they are satisfied. This could be a long and arduous road that ends up with you being out of pocket.

They might agree to terminating the contract with you keeping the deposit or they may expect the deposit to be returned.

On the other hand, if you believe that you have delivered what was asked, you might be inclined to stand your ground, invoice the final 50% and initiate a legal action of your own if they refuse to pay.

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