Question:

I went to a nearby moshav to print some pictures. It is a special job and the computer files needed to be altered before printing. I spent a long time at this printers until the girl altered a picture and printed me a sample that I was happy with.

She told me she would call me the following Sunday to tell me they are ready to be picked up since it would take several minutes to alter each one and several more minutes to do the printing since high quality large sized prints take quite a while to print and i ordered a large number of them.

She never called me so I called her and she said they are not ready yet and that we would be in touch in the next days.

She never called me so I called and every day they said she was not there. After 2 weeks the owner said she was no longer working there. I asked for her home phone number so I could find out exactly how much work she had done and so she could explain to the owner or another worker what to do. He refused to give me her surname or phone number and said I had to come to the moshav and start over again explaining what to do etc. I asked if I could explain over the phone, that shlepping out to a moshav and hanging around for an hour when I have a newborn and a 1 year old at home is very difficult, especially since I would have to return yet again to pick them up, he found my disc on her desk and didn’t even ant to look at the files to check what work she did, would not contact her, and screamed at me down the phone and slammed it down while I was still trying to explain myself.

Is this owner obligated to do the work for me or reimburse me for my time? he is taking no responsibility for anything and is putting everything on my cheshbon in terms of hours and hours wasted, not to mention the business I could be losing because I don’t have my merchandise to sell.

Answer:

Obviously one cannot give a clear ruling without hearing both sides of a case.

In general, though, it would appear from the circumstances described that the girl who accepted the work did so in her capacity as an employee of a company, and as such there is a contractual agreement between the client and the company. This would normally oblige the company to ensure that the work is completed in an acceptable time, regardless of whether the employee is still working there.

In your circumstances, as presented in the shailah, you would appear to have a strong case. I would advise you to contact the store again, impressing upon them their obligations and the urgency of your situation. If this fails to procure results, you may have no choice other than to summons them to a Din Torah at a Beis Din.

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