Plaintiffs Attorney: John Turcotte, Esq.
E. Walker Justice
matter came before the Court on a damages hearing. Plaintiffs
were present along with counsel, John Tourcotte, Esq.
Defendants appeared pro se. The Court entered a
default against Defendants by Order dated April 13, 2016.
general rule, damages for detective performance under a
construction contract may be measured either by the
reasonable costs of reconstruction and completion in
accordance with the contract, or by the diminished value to
the owner of the property by reason of the defects.
Parsons v. Beaulieu, 429 A.2d 214, 217 (Me. 1981); 5
A. Corbin, Contracts § 1089 (1964).
former measure of damages applies to the present fact
scenario and Plaintiff makes no claim for diminution of
Court finds as follows:
The contract price for the ice hockey rink was $7, 000.
See Plaintiff's Exhibit 1. Plaintiffs paid
Defendant Webster d/b/a Lake Region Paving and Seal Coating a
total of $9, 000. Of this total amount paid, $7, 000
represents the full contract price for the ice rink and $2,
000 was advanced toward the driveway-paving contract. See
Plaintiff's Exhibit 2. Defendants never worked toward
the driveway project or provided any materials to Plaintiffs,
related to that project.
undisputed evidence regarding repair and completion of the
job in keeping with the contract is as follows. The tearing
out of the asphalt installed by Defendants totaled $13, 000.
The completion of the job was an additional $15, 600.
Defendants questioned the relative cost difference between
what they charged and what the replacement contractor, Mr.
Mason, charged. Ostensibly this was to call into question the
reasonableness of the scope of work and the amount charged
for the work performed. Admirably, Defendants conceded their
fault in getting into a project they knew very little about
(ice rink construction) for the purposes of a loss leader to
be able to take on the more profitable companion job of
paving the Plaintiffs' driveway. While it is
understandable for the Defendants to feel that such an honest
concession should lead to a reasonable resolution with the
Plaintiffs, short of litigation, that did not happen and does
not itself constitute a defense to the damages claimed by
Plaintiffs. Moreover, to claim that Defendants charged much
less than Mr. Mason for similar or a greater amount of work
does not alone call into question the scope of work or rate
charged by Mr. Mason. In fact, given the margin by which the
project was found to be deficient (a 54-inch pitch for an ice
skating rink), the fortuity that Defendants work cost much
less than Mr. Mason's work, perhaps makes rather than
undermines the ineluctable conclusion that the project was
dramatically under-estimated by Defendants when quoted for
admitted to Plaintiffs that the pavement all needed to be
removed in order to bring the project into alignment with the
contract. Mr. Webster testified that the project could have
been remedied by repairing a single quadrant. However, Mr.
Webster provided no evidence regarding how that might affect
the cost of repair, if at all. Moreover, that testimony is
substantially undermined by an initial admission that the
pavement needed to be removed, in addition to Mr. Mason's
rebuttal testimony that a quadrant approach to the repair
would not have worked. As a separate but related point, the
record suggests that it is not an acceptable building
practice to build up the declining grade over already
1. Defendants Chris Webster and James Sacuzzo are liable to
Plaintiffs, jointly and severally, for the sum of $21, 600.
2. Defendant Chris Webster is liable to Plaintiffs for the
additional sum of $2, 000 for the deposit for the driveway
for which work was not performed on Plaintiffs' property.
3. Defendant Chris Webster is ordered solely to pay
Plaintiffs' reasonable attorneys fees for a violation of
the Maine Unfair Trade Practices Act, which the court finds
to be $3, 798.50.
Clerk is directed to enter this Order on the civil docket by
reference pursuant to ...