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General Contractor-HMFIC
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7 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello all,

what would be a good, tactful way of saying dumbass POS f'ed the work?
im struggling to thing of a suitable synonym that meets the level of severity. i was asked to provide expert testimony and the only thing that fits has a lot of expletives. A LOT.

Let's have some good ones...

-Dustin
 

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General Contractor-HMFIC
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7 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
i may post specifics and pics of what im talking about or i may not considering its under active litigation but its F'ing awesome for the level of HOLY **** "i cant believe someone did this" best worst thing ive seen my whole career. assume meth-heads robbing little old ladies, which is exactly what happened.
 

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The Remodeler
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1,535 Posts
i was asked to provide expert testimony and the only thing that fits has a lot of expletives. A LOT.

-Dustin
Why so personal? You're there to provide an expert opinion, thats all. Say the guy's work doesnt meet code, and give examples if asked.

There's no reason for you to bash the guy in court.
 

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General Contractor-HMFIC
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7 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·
its not bashing. im trying to find right words for these people. there were about 6 different guys and i was asked to provide a general statement. bashing is exactly what im trying not to do. hence, the question.
 

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Super Moderator
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24,703 Posts
The individual(s) who worked on this job failed to complete the project in a professional workman like manner using accepted trade standards. Techniques, methods and materials used were sub-standard and not those that would have been used by skilled professional tradesmen.



You could then go on to describe specific occurrences of sub-standard work.
Pictures work best.
 

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General Contractor-HMFIC
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7 Posts
Discussion Starter · #7 ·
like it griz.

i have pics and video.
I know i should be objective. Construction is the ONLY thing i have ever not ****ed around with. The only thing i am passionate about and never have done anything but the right thing with. to see what these guys have done sickens me.
 

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I once saw an expert witness talk about one of those projects. He went into mind-numbing detail and at the end was asked to summarize - not his opinion of the people who did the work, but of the work itself. He paused, then said, "Not everything was completely wrong, but everything was touched by error." It was a compelling, truthful, non-name-calling way of saying that everything was messed up.

He had gone around with an awl and a piece of white paper laminated to make it a white-board. He'd wipe off the last description, scribble the new one, tape or stab the paper next to the error, and take a picture. It was a great way to do the job-site inspection and note-taking and the final description all at once. He printed out 500 pages of pictures, and handed a CD to everyone, too.
 

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I own stock in FotoMat!
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12,697 Posts
The person doing the work did not have a license as required by law, and I found the work he installed does would not pass inspection. If the work you found you felt was unsafe, you should mention that.

That's all you would need to say.
 

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The person doing the work did not have a license as required by law, and I found the work he installed does would not pass inspection. If the work you found you felt was unsafe, you should mention that.

That's all you would need to say.
Workers were unqualified and their skill level was below what is necessary for the work they attempted to perform.
If you're a paid expert witness, you are on the team, being paid to help someone win - not to lie or exaggerate, but to further one side of the case. The summary is your opportunity to offer not just some robotic facts, but your judgment. If it's a massive effed-up bunch of hackery, you need to say that, but nicely.
 

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Hair Splitter
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18,330 Posts
If you're a paid expert witness, you are on the team, being paid to help someone win - not to lie or exaggerate, but to further one side of the case. The summary is your opportunity to offer not just some robotic facts, but your judgment. If it's a massive effed-up bunch of hackery, you need to say that, but nicely.
I agree. You really don't need to specifically refer to the individuals who completed the work, just the work itself. Describe what you found and how it was incorrect. You can list the methods and materials that were deficient for the project.

This will all reflect on the individual who completed the work. The problem with testifying specifically about someone and making claims is that you didn't see who did it. Just testify to what you know, not what you think.
 

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Super Moderator
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Try being on the other side of the coin and defending a guy accused of being a hack....

It came down to which expert had the most credibility with the judge.
 

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worst thing ive seen my whole career
If this is indeed true, it is a good start.

Perhaps your client would benefit from an unemotional demeanor and more articulate rewording.

"Most sub-standard, illegal, unprofessional and unsafe workmanship I have seen in my ____ years of experience working in the trades. "

If it is not true then you will lose credibility with emotional drama and inaccuracy and cause your client harm.

Evaluate the work, not the people.

If you want to help the "Little old lady", keep your emotions in check as much as you can but your client might benefit from you saying "the utter lack of safety and disregard for all the people put at great risk of serious injury or death by the dangerous, sub-standard, illegal work that was done frankly makes me angry."

Run it past the attorney you are working with to get some feedback.
 

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The Ultimate Wire Hider
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Ahem...

From my observation, it appears that work that was performed below acceptable industry quality standards. It is also evident by my observation that the work was performed by less-experienced individuals who probably put a great deal of effort into this project yet were not thoroughly instructed or experienced in the endeavor that they chose to accept. Therefore it is my opinion that a better trained and more experienced crew would have performed the said work in a manner by which would have been acceptable by the majority of contractors and homeowners in the industry.
 

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Making a living
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236 Posts
I just got off work and a few that come to mind are:

Looked like a horse ship omelet

Had the workmanship of a rock

Mother Teresa would have soiled herself

A dead guy could have done better

Another quality job from Craig's list

A drunk man with Parkinson's could shame them with his steady hand

Look at it long enough and you'll go blind

I'm as comfortable with the job as a colonoscopy

Note to the humorless : this is a form of humor called sarcasm. I wouldn't expect you to get it. Nobody is actually suggesting that a person would pontificate such prose to the prosecution.
 

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Try being on the other side of the coin and defending a guy accused of being a hack....

It came down to which expert had the most credibility with the judge.
Griz, you're right, by the time you've gotten into court things are difficult.

The law (in California) is slanted toward protecting the homeowner, but I think that most mediators, arbitrators, and judges are pretty objective, and their starting position if any is more likely to presume that homeowners exaggerate the scope of problems.

What's a problem for a contractor is not to take the proceeding seriously, to plan to wing it without good representation. In most cases homeowners have more money and therefore stronger legal support.
 

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Do not, do not, get involved with any legal matters unless all your I's are dotted and your t's crossed and are being paid for your services, ie more than your daily rate, because they will eat up your day quickly. I'll never go to court for anyone, ever, in a construction dispute.
 

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spazman
Flooring
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758 Posts
Why so personal? You're there to provide an expert opinion, thats all. Say the guy's work doesnt meet code, and give examples if asked.

There's no reason for you to bash the guy in court.
Lots of good advice about what to say in court. I also understand that they just want your professional opinion but I take it personally too when drug addicts rob old people. Please do your best to nail these dirt bags.
 
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