Ending a Contract for Services


As a client, you can end a contract even if the work has already been started.

You can end a contract with a service provider

You can end the contract if the service provider isn’t doing a good job. This could be the case, for example, if the supplier is seriously behind schedule or fails to meet industry standards.  

You can decide to end a contract for services at any time and for no particular reason. However, you will generally have to pay the service provider for

  • work already performed (e.g., the number of hours already worked), 
  • expenses already incurred (e.g., equipment rental costs), 
  • material used for the service that cannot be recovered by the service provider (e.g., metal parts welded to the body of a car undergoing repairs) or used for something else (e.g., motorcycle parts that can only be used for a rare model),  
  • losses incurred by the service provider due to cancellation of the contract.  

A service provider can end a contract in certain cases

The service provider can stop providing the service if they have a serious reason for doing so, even if the work is already in progress. Here are some examples of situations where your service provider may be justified in ending the contract:

  • Interfering with the performance of the work several times.
  • Refusing to cooperate with the service provider.
  • Changing the terms of the contract without the service provider’s agreement. 
  • Being abusive, unpleasant or disrespectful.

By contrast, a court found that these behaviours did not entitle the provider to terminate their service: 

  • Not charging a high enough price in the contract, except if the price was set based on wrong information given by the client.  
  • The client is very demanding. 
  • The client has not yet paid certain minor costs.

In any case, the service provider may not end the contract at a time that could result in damages to you. They must take steps to ensure that you do not suffer any immediate loss as a result of the termination of the service. In addition, a service provider who has received an advance from you must reimburse you any amount that exceeds the portion of the work they already completed.

Claiming damages

Once the provision of services has come to an end, you may be able to make a claim for compensation. For example, it’s possible to take action against a renovation contractor if the work was poorly performed. 

If you experienced problems with the repair of a vehicle or household appliance, you should know that there are remedies available under the Consumer Protection Act.

If you believe that your supplier was at fault and if you suffered damage as a result, you can find out how to receive compensation for damages on the basis of civil liability.