Attorney tries to step out of dispute between contractors

Kelly Holleran Nov. 14, 2011, 8:25am

A Jefferson County lawyer has filed an interpleader, asking the court to release him from any potential liens that may be filed against him because of fees not paid to construction workers.

Wayne A. Reaud, partner at Beaumont's Reaud, Morgan & Quinn law firm, claims he hired defendant Charles Stidham of defendant Clayton Anderson Restoration to remodel his house in Beaumont.

In turn, Stidham hired defendant Windham Air Conditioning Co., doing business as Delta Air Conditioning, to install new air conditioning units and new duct work throughout the home, according to the complaint filed Nov. 2 in Jefferson County District Court.

On June 21, Stidham paid Windham a deposit for the job. On July 21, Delta finished the work, but Stidham has failed to pay it the remaining $19,994 due, court documents state.

On July 22, a water-soaked portion of the ceiling in Reaud's home collapsed allgedly because of an overflow in a drip pan installed by Delta, the complaint states. Reaud claims Stidham arrived at his home to assess the damage. Clayton Anderson employees cleaned up the debris and repaired the damage, according to the complaint. In turn, Stidham billed Delta for the cost to repair the residence, the suit states.

Stidham still owes Delta money for the air conditioning work it performed, but his debt has decreased since his employees performed the repair work at Reaud's house, the complaint says.

"The difference, owed by Stidham to Delta, is $4,046.54," the suit states.

Reaud received a payment of $26,301 from his insurance company, but is not sure who to pay the money to. Reaud does not want to get caught in the midst of the debt debate and wants to avoid the threat of liens being filed against his property.

Therefore, he filed the interpleader action, seeking to be released from any liability to the defendants, plus attorney's fees and other relief the court deems just.

George Michael Jamail of Beaumont will be representing him.

The case has been assigned to Judge Donald Floyd, 172nd District Court.

Case No. E191-288

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