Local sub-contractors fight for what they're owed amid tough decisions

INDIANAPOLIS – Working families waiting on their money are facing tough decisions: Several small mom-and-pop businesses are owed thousands of dollars for work already done at a Wingstop restaurant.

When no one would answer their questions, they turned to Call 6 Investigates.

James Compton has to delay expanding his business due to the outstanding bill. And he's not alone.

Paul Kopec served his country. The electrician later started his own company with his daughter and worked on the construction of Eskenazi Health and Indianapolis International Airport.

"I signed a beam at the airport,” Kopec said. “I'm proud of it."

Among his many house calls he wasn't prepared to be owed nearly $15,500.

"They should pay the money to all the contractors. We all completed the work," Kopec said.

The project in question is a Wing Stop restaurant located at 8201 E. Washington St. in Indianapolis.

It's open for business, and the guys we met up with are open to a resolution as they face difficult choices.

Altogether, this group is waiting on $151,445.34. Non-payment threatens the jobs of many others.

Jim Lamping installed all of the heating and cooling inside the Wingstop. He's been unable to collect on nearly $50,000.  

"It's very sour,” Lamping said. “It's sad to see it."

He may need to ask for an extension on his line of credit to get through the next couple of weeks.

"I run my business the way I like to be treated,” Lamping said. “I figure I do a fair job and for a fair price, that's why I've been in business so long."

Jake Miller is about to a grandpa not once or twice, but three times. His three children are all becoming parents in a matter of months. With more than $12,000 owed, that family vacation is not likely.

"If we could just get paid. Get our supplies paid for – we'd be back in track," Miller said.

James Compton has met with the owner of the Wingstop, Chintu Patel, who owns other restaurants around central Indiana.

The Navy veteran says Patel offered to pay less than the $50,000 owed. 

"I work hard. We're an honest company,” Compton said. “I am an honest person, but sometimes it doesn't get the job done."

The law firm for Wingstop is blaming its general contractor RV Young Construction for costs and lack of payment. We received this statement from the law firm that represents Shiv Real Estate 14 LLC, the owner of the Wingstop:

"We sympathize with any individual who claims to not have been paid by RV Young Construction and Consulting, Inc., the general contractor on this project.  Shiv has paid and fully intends to pay all amounts due and owing under the Construction Contract with the general contractor.  Under the Construction Contract, it is the responsibility of the general contractor to ensure that each approved subcontractor is paid.  It is our understanding that the general contractor incurred unauthorized cost overruns and has not paid the subcontractors despite Shiv's payments to the general contractor.  We encourage each subcontractor to explore all legal remedies against the general contractor for its failure to remit funds on our project."

Meanwhile, RV Young’s representative responded to that statement from the law firm with this:

"I do not owe for any materials or sub-contractor cost on this project, but I do hold myself responsible to do all I can to see that every business and individuals receive 100 percent of monies due.”

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