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No payment for 4 months--Should I give up?
Thread poster: Sara Senft

Sara Senft  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 00:11
Spanish to English
+ ...
Jan 15, 2009

In September, I translated an article. It was a small project worth 52 USD. The direct client said she would pay me a month from the date I submit it.

One month later, no payment. In mid-December, the last time we were in contact, she said she would write me a check. Nothing showed up. A few days ago, I sent her an email asking about my check. No response.

Naturally, I am feeling quite annoyed. At this rate, should I give up on getting paid from her?


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élodie chatelais  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 05:11
English to French
a piece of advice... Jan 15, 2009

Hello,

This kind of problem happened to me too, and what I did is send paypal reminders to the person everyday, even twice a day sometimes. It worked for me, cause in the end, the client went mad with all these reminders and paid me just to be quiet. The risk is that if your reminder is spammed, the others won't reach the mailbox, but it's worth a try, and it only takes a few seconds...


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Jenny Forbes  Identity Verified
Local time: 04:11
Member (2006)
French to English
+ ...
Telephone them Jan 15, 2009

Sara, certainly you mustn't give up yet. Telephone them and try not to get fobbed off with a "minion". Ask for the name of the managing director and speak to him/her. Write him/her a personal letter attaching the original invoice and send it by registered post.
Best of luck,
Jenny


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Sara Senft  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 00:11
Spanish to English
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Unfortunately, I can't do that Jan 15, 2009

Unfortunately, I can't do that. I don't have a phone number for her, nor do I have a postal address. I only have an email address.


Jenny Forbes wrote:

Sara, certainly you mustn't give up yet. Telephone them and try not to get fobbed off with a "minion". Ask for the name of the managing director and speak to him/her. Write him/her a personal letter attaching the original invoice and send it by registered post.
Best of luck,
Jenny


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Elisabete Cunha  Identity Verified
Portugal
Local time: 04:11
Member (2006)
English to Portuguese
+ ...
Don't give up Jan 15, 2009

I had a similar problem some years ago with an indian agency and the sum was nearly 30 USD. At the time they refused to pay because allegedly I didn't deliver the whole project. That was a lie of course and I had e-mails to proof that I was right. I spent almost an year chasing them and we exchanged some very unpleasant emails, but the payment did arrived.

I don't care what the sum is, everyone who works is entitled to be paid, so don't give up. It's your money!


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Taija Hyvönen
Finland
Local time: 06:11
Member (2008)
English to Finnish
+ ...
Waiting as well... Jan 15, 2009

I have been waiting for a couple of hundred dollars for a few months now... they were happy with the work, very pleasant all over, promising to pay... nothing yet.

Nice to hear you have been able to collect your pay even after such a long time and not giving up can be worth the trouble. I am thinking of sending emails now... LOTS of emails.


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Alp Berker  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 00:11
Turkish to English
+ ...
Create a Blue Board entry for them Jan 15, 2009

Create a new Blueboard entry for them. It doesn't matter if they are a direct client or not, they can still get a blueboard entry.
Then email them a link to your Blueboard entry. That way they are informed of your displeasure.


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Alp Berker  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 00:11
Turkish to English
+ ...
BTW Jan 15, 2009

By the way, where is this client located?

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Sara Senft  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 00:11
Spanish to English
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
In the USA Jan 15, 2009

She's in the USA, just like me.

I've considering making a BlueBoard entry. The problem is I don't have a postal address for her. I only have an email address. Is there a way to work around this and make a BB entry?

Alp Berker wrote:

By the way, where is this client located?


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xxxmercury
United States
Local time: 21:11
English to Russian
+ ...
Take it to Better Business Bureau Jan 15, 2009

Take this case to the Better Business Bureau of the state where you live and work.

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Tomás Cano Binder, CT  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 05:11
Member (2005)
English to Spanish
+ ...
Create a Blue Board for this person... Jan 15, 2009

...and forget about it. Is 52 dollars more valuable than your everyday peace?

And... as my mother said to me when I was cheated by a plumber who made a true mess of my bathroom and got paid in my office before I came home to see the mess, which he of course did not fix, nor did he return any of the money, not even after being taken to court (yes, these things can happen in my country): "This money will save you lots of trouble in the future". From now on you might want to ask for a phone number and use it just to confirm some quick detail (basically to confirm that the phone number is correct).

I know that it is just sad to let this kind of people get away with it. I just propose this approach just for your peace of mind.


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José Henrique Lamensdorf  Identity Verified
Brazil
Local time: 01:11
English to Portuguese
+ ...
Threaten to snitch on them to the IRS Jan 15, 2009

Have a look at http://www.stevensricci.com/irs_advantage.html

E-mail your client that you'll be sending a Form 1099-C to the IRS on them. This means you will be waving good-bye to your $ 52, which then becomes their taxable income. If they failed to report that on their tax return, there is a $ 50 fine. Okay, they still have $2. But then, as it opens a precedent, IRS auditors will want to check whether they did it to any other people as well, and hence owe Uncle Same more money, so they'll sweep their records with a fine-tooth comb.

For cryin' out loud, who in their sane or insane mind would ever invite an IRS audit on their own company for two bucks' profit?

You should get paid within the next day.
I did, when I played this stunt.


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LegalTransform  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 00:11
Member (2002)
Spanish to English
+ ...
Check their website Jan 15, 2009

If you have an e-mail address, then you should be able to go to their website and find their mailing address, etc. (ex. joshua@alllanguagesintheworld.com would be www.alllanguagesintheworld.com) [moderators: this is not a real company or site]

However, if you worked for someone who contacted you from a free e-mail address (yahoo, hotmail, voila, etc.) without any additional details then I hope you have learned your lesson and will not do that again.

[Edited at 2009-01-16 00:11 GMT]


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erika rubinstein  Identity Verified
Local time: 05:11
Member (2011)
English to Russian
+ ...
No Contact Information Jan 15, 2009

How is it possible, that you work for someone, not knowing his or her adress or telephone number. It is so naive!

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Marie-Céline GEORG  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 05:11
English to French
+ ...
No address? Jan 15, 2009

Hi,

How did you write your invoice if you didn't have a postal address?
Unfortunately, I'd say that you can say good-bye to your 52 $ if you don't know who you worked for.


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