Distraught due to bridesmaid dresses missing for my wedding...

by V
(Oak Park, MI)

The seamstress was contracted to make 11 bridesmaid dresses before the wedding. The bride and the maid of honor maintained contact with the seamstress. The seamstress also had several meetings at the bride's home. The bridesmaids also had contact with the seamstress exchanging calls and text messages.

The seamstress's last fitting was at the wedding rehearsal, one week before the wedding. She promised the bridesmaids dresses the Tuesday before the wedding, and then the seamstress did not return calls. She also promised she would bring them to one location on the Friday before the wedding.

She called but did not show, then she promised to bring the dresses to the church, but never showed and there were no dresses the day of the wedding for 11 bridesmaids.

I am the bride. I was so disappointed and heartbroken. I am an older bride and it was my first time getting married to the man of my dreams. She brought the dresses after the wedding started... 45 minutes late. I was and still am emotionally distressed about this.

I can't even talk to the bridal party because they want their money back, which they deserve. What can I do about this? This seamstress ruined everything. There must be some kind of legal action I can take for the costs, plus the emotional suffering I went through, and the fact that all memories and photos of my wedding are ruined. Thank you.

Visitor Question:
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ANSWER for "Distraught due to bridesmaid dresses missing for my wedding...":

V (Oak Park, MI):

That sounds like a nightmare! While you appear to have the basis of a civil action, the success of that action will depend upon a couple of factors.

The first is whether or not you had a written contractual agreement with the seamstress, wherein for an amount certain to be paid by you and/or the bridesmaids, the seamstress would create a specific number of bridesmaid dresses and have them delivered to you and/or the bridesmaids at a specific day or even time before the wedding.

Absent a written agreement, you will still have the basis of a civil claim, but that claim won't be as strong as a claim based on a breach of a written contract.

Of course, an oral agreement is as enforceable as a contract, and as a result, you, and/or the bridesmaids may still have the basis of a civil action against the seamstress. To pursue that action may require you and/or the bridesmaids to file a lawsuit in small claims court.

In the State of Michigan, the maximum, or "jurisdictional" amount a victim can sue for is $5,000.00. That amount can include a request for actual money damages, and for pain and suffering (emotional distress).

The above is general information. Laws change frequently, and across jurisdictions. You should get a personalized case evaluation from an attorney licensed in your state. Find a local attorney to give you a free case review here, or call (888) 647-2490.

Best of luck,

Judge Calisi

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