GG3 drip damaged painting / invisible "sub-contractor" liability

Six months ago I cleaned windows i/o or a lady and some GG3 cleaning solution dripped on a painting. She immediately freaked out and grabbed the painting off the wall. I said “just let it dry”, and she ignored that, grabbed a rag and started rubbing the drip. I did not charge her for the $220 window cleaning as a consideration, not as an admission of wrong doing. She sent the painting off to get repaired, but they were unable to fix it for her. Personally, I think her rubbing the wet cleaning solution on the painting caused some damage.

Now, six months later, she wants a new painting, valued at $750.

The clincher is that it was not my window cleaning company; I was working as a “sub contractor” for a guy who does not have any paper trail between his business and the people who work for him. He wants me to resolve the situation with the customer at my expense.

I work on my own all spring & summer, and have been working for him in the winter to keep food on the table. It would be a significant hit to my bottom line if I severed ties with him.

What would you do: buy the customer a new painting? tell the customer to sue the window cleaning company I was working for and walk away?

Why wait 6 months and finally ask for a new painting? I wouldn’t buy her a new one. I would let her know that it was my fault the painting had water drips and that she please acknowledges that she mostly ruined it by smearing more water to the painting. If not I would just pay the difference 750-220= 530

report it to your insurance company, accurately and completely describe what happened, pay your deductible and let them handle it. This is what you pay premiums for. Does it suck? Yes. Is the customer scamming you? Probably. Is it your responsibility? Yes, you spilled the water on the painting that started this whole chain of events, regardless of her stupid attempts that made it worse

Why would a professional cleaning solution like GG3 damage a painted surface?

Probably the same as if you had spilled water on it, too many options of what the painting was actually painted with, oil, guache, water colors, chalk. Its not the same as the latex paint thats on the walls, something GG3 wouldn’t stain.

I think the rubbing probably caused the problem… Tough call

I’ve noticed discolored-like streaks on painted surfaces below glass, for example, when using GG4 on a door (both new construction and older.)

Definitely call your insurance company and tell them the situation.

Times 2 man

I used my Vice-Versa and Unger pole to reach a window 30’ up today. I drove by the house later, and I noticed that there are discolored places under the window sill where the GG4 may…MAY…have dripped on the Hardie plank. Of course, the spots may have been caused by something else…dunno for sure, but it sure is suspicious to me.

Is this a common problem?

Sometimes that discoloration is acutally a clean spot on a dirty house

We settled amicably for $275 + the $220 valued free window cleaning. I am relieved and happy to have this behind me. I am insured to $2,000,000 through
Ohio Casualty; my rates are low and I’d like to keep it that way so I coughed up a check on my own. In the future I may consider a more benign eco-friendly dish soap solution, perhaps with some slip added.

It’s so nice to have this behind me. Our reputation is our livelyhood.

How is he sub contracting if he has no paper trail? He should be billing the customer if he is contracting the work, but you gave the $220 for the job back to the customer, so did you still have to pay him his cut? If he wants to “sub contract” he should have some of the headaches, so you might want to re-evaluate whether this sub contracting is really in your best interest, whatever his cut is could be money you could roll back into advertising for yourself, and you may not be as bad off in the winter as you think, just a thought;)

He is a dick, and believe me I keep the Dept of Labor & Industries phone number clipped to the sun visor in my truck for when the time comes
to shed a little light on his shady business dealings. I also have a client who is a an attorney specializing in labor law, and he has informally advised me
about the legality of this guy’s operation.

He tells all of his customers that I work for him, yet repeatedly tells me I do not work for him at all, that I am not his employee but an “independant” or a “business partner”. He vigorously enforces a non-compete agreement, yet non-compete agreements can only exist between employers & employees. He sometimes calls me a “business partner” yet his business is structured as a sole prop. The bull**** is deep and I am nearly ready to throw him under the bus, so to speak.

that’s a difficult situation. I would not recognize his non-compete and try to start some business up on my own.
without stealing his customer contacts, or any specific trade secrets. If he wants to treat you like an independent contractor, then go ahead and act like it.

I think bumble bee is right you are a pro so handle it like a pro and you will have a very good name for yourself throughout the community for handling the problem and not playing the blame game. I use dish soap and water a soap called plannet earth its 100% biodegradeable.