Agreement Between Contractor and Subcontractor
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A subcontractor is a person who is awarded a portion of an existing contract by a principal or general contractor. Subcontractor performs work under a contract with a general contractor, rather than the employer who hired the general contractor. Determining whether someone is a subcontractor depends on the facts in each case, but is generally determined by whether control over the manner and methods of the work is retained by the employer.
Building construction is a common example of how the contractor-subcontractor relationship works. The general contractor takes prime responsibility for seeing that the building is constructed and signs a contract to do so. Then they retain subcontractors to perform specialty work such as installing plumbing, laying carpet, making cabinetry, and landscaping. Usually each subcontractor is paid a somewhat lesser sum than what the contractor receives for the work. If the owner refuses to pay the general contractor for work a subcontractor has performed, the subcontractor has the right to file a mechanic's lien against the property for the cost of the unpaid work.
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