invoice demands
Thread poster: biankonera

biankonera  Identity Verified
Latvia
Local time: 13:50
Italian to Latvian
+ ...
Nov 15, 2006

I suppose there are almost as many ways of dealing with invoices as there are agencies out there, but I was wondering - what might be the trick (I hope none) behind the agency's demand to send the invoice both by email and via snail mail? Sincerely I havent used normal mail for ages so Ive no idea how long it takes now to deliver a letter from one end of Europe to another, but Id assume its more than just few days.

So I was wondering - maybe anybody has already had similar experienc
... See more
I suppose there are almost as many ways of dealing with invoices as there are agencies out there, but I was wondering - what might be the trick (I hope none) behind the agency's demand to send the invoice both by email and via snail mail? Sincerely I havent used normal mail for ages so Ive no idea how long it takes now to deliver a letter from one end of Europe to another, but Id assume its more than just few days.

So I was wondering - maybe anybody has already had similar experience regarding invoices? And how does it affect the payment times?

Stella
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Uldis Liepkalns  Identity Verified
Latvia
Local time: 13:50
Member (2003)
English to Latvian
+ ...
I have only two such Nov 15, 2006

Hi Stella,

I have only two clients in the whole World (Latvia excluded, here locally all invoices have to be delivered as hard copies) who demand also hard copies of invoices (one in Lithuania, the other one in Netherlands).
However, both of them pay within 15 days from the receipt of the invoice.

On the funny side, one notorious French client, working with whom we stopped long ago because of his payment practices, today sent us email, demanding "In line with chan
... See more
Hi Stella,

I have only two clients in the whole World (Latvia excluded, here locally all invoices have to be delivered as hard copies) who demand also hard copies of invoices (one in Lithuania, the other one in Netherlands).
However, both of them pay within 15 days from the receipt of the invoice.

On the funny side, one notorious French client, working with whom we stopped long ago because of his payment practices, today sent us email, demanding "In line with changes in French legislation, we would like to request your help in order to provide us with an extract of our client account from your accounts books (showing all our payments) for the years 2003, 2004 and 2005.

I replied that we first would like to see our last (small one) invoice, dated December 2004, paid

Uldis

bramasole wrote:

So I was wondering - maybe anybody has already had similar experience regarding invoices? And how does it affect the payment times?

Stella
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Ralf Lemster  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 12:50
English to German
+ ...
Perfectly normal, IMO Nov 15, 2006

Hi Stella,

I suppose there are almost as many ways of dealing with invoices as there are agencies out there, but I was wondering - what might be the trick (I hope none) behind the agency's demand to send the invoice both by email and via snail mail?

No trick - it's the law, actually: in Germany, strictly speaking, electronic invoices are invalid for tax purposes unless sender and recipient have established a secure electronic signature, using a recognised method.

For this reason, all of our invoices go out by snail mail, and frankly, I prefer receiving them that way, too. No tricks at all.

Best regards,
Ralf


 

Paul Merriam  Identity Verified
Local time: 06:50
Member (2008)
Russian to English
+ ...
Legislation? Nov 16, 2006

You don't indicate which country is involved. Some countries require that the invoice have a physical signature on it in ink (which necessitates sending the invoice by snail mail). They may want it by e-mail as well so that they know what the snail mail invoice will say (and perhaps can discuss it with you if they feel it necessary to do so).

Perhaps you could ask them and see whether they give you a reply along these lines.


 

Heinrich Pesch  Identity Verified
Finland
Local time: 13:50
Member (2003)
Finnish to German
+ ...
pdf Nov 16, 2006

That is the first time I hear about this regulation Ralf mentioned. It probably (no legal advice provided here) means, that the customer has to print the invoice on paper and file it, but it should not mean that YOU have to print it out and put it into an envelope, lick a stamp and go to the next postbox.
All online purchases are invoiced electronically.

From my German customers only one demands normaled mailed invoices, which does not shorten his extremely late payments.
... See more
That is the first time I hear about this regulation Ralf mentioned. It probably (no legal advice provided here) means, that the customer has to print the invoice on paper and file it, but it should not mean that YOU have to print it out and put it into an envelope, lick a stamp and go to the next postbox.
All online purchases are invoiced electronically.

From my German customers only one demands normaled mailed invoices, which does not shorten his extremely late payments.

Regards
Heinrich
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biankonera  Identity Verified
Latvia
Local time: 13:50
Italian to Latvian
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
good to know.. Nov 16, 2006

..its not something abnormal.:) Big thanks to every one of you for sharing your experience on this matter!

Heinrich,
thats what I was considering normal - if they need my signature, I can allways scan the invoice and send it as a PDF file. In fact thats how it worked for me with one German agency.

Enjoy your day!

Stella

[Edited at 2006-11-16 17:02]


 

Marc P (X)  Identity Verified
Local time: 12:50
German to English
+ ...
invoice demands Nov 16, 2006

Heinrich Pesch wrote:

That is the first time I hear about this regulation Ralf mentioned. It probably (no legal advice provided here) means, that the customer has to print the invoice on paper and file it, but it should not mean that YOU have to print it out and put it into an envelope, lick a stamp and go to the next postbox.


Ralf is right: electronic invoices are permissible in Germany, but an electronic signature has to be implemented, and not only that, statements have to be sent on paper at regular intervals in addition. (At least, this was the case when I last checked.)

The legislation in Germany is seriously lagging behind technical progress - my impression is that the civil servants responsible for it still use typewriters. I am sure that many people informally send invoices as PDFs. On the other hand, Deutsche Telekom sends electronic invoices, and I am currently trying to get paper ones out of them for 2005 (not having received the electronic ones).

Marc


 

Astrid Elke Witte  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 12:50
Member (2002)
German to English
+ ...
Adverse experience with electronic invoicing Nov 16, 2006

One of my customers paid every invoice punctually or early until one day the firm decided to modernise its procedures and asked me to send all my invoices by e-mail together with the translation. Since that date (a couple of months ago) only about 60-70% of my invoices are paid in the normal way, and the rest somehow "get lost". I suspect that the latter are never printed off by the recipient. Perhaps only the translation is printed off, and then the e-mail (together with my invoice) deleted. I... See more
One of my customers paid every invoice punctually or early until one day the firm decided to modernise its procedures and asked me to send all my invoices by e-mail together with the translation. Since that date (a couple of months ago) only about 60-70% of my invoices are paid in the normal way, and the rest somehow "get lost". I suspect that the latter are never printed off by the recipient. Perhaps only the translation is printed off, and then the e-mail (together with my invoice) deleted. It is then a very slow process to get those particular invoices paid, because somebody there has to be persuaded to deal with the "problem" and nobody has time.

Astrid
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Adi Al-Ka'bi
Local time: 15:50
Arabic to English
+ ...
Invoicing etc Mar 4, 2007

My invoice is a word document that I update each time I issue it.
I send it by email with the translation and request the recipient to please print it out and send to accounts for processing the payment and to confirm receipt and having attended to the invoice.

In fact my invoice is also my quotation and is headed as Quotation/Invoice. It's also a receipt for having received the pay.

If anyone wants to mess about with it they can. But I've never had problems like
... See more
My invoice is a word document that I update each time I issue it.
I send it by email with the translation and request the recipient to please print it out and send to accounts for processing the payment and to confirm receipt and having attended to the invoice.

In fact my invoice is also my quotation and is headed as Quotation/Invoice. It's also a receipt for having received the pay.

If anyone wants to mess about with it they can. But I've never had problems like such.

If some mention that the accounts department might consider the printout as a photocopy and not original, I add color to the letterhead and request the recipient to print by inkjet. That way it's not possible to be mistaken for a photocopy any more.

As for Germany and it's tax regulations and what nots and places like that, I'd never ask to be paid there. I don't have problems of tax where I am, so it's no problem for me. But if I had such a problem I'd find someone overseas that I could trust and direct all payments to them and give them a commission of half my tax savings. Seeing that as criminal or not depends on ones mind settings. Many places in the world do not have tax or do not tax miserly jobs like translators. They only go after those that make 10 times or more than what translators make.

But if you like the idea, go to the nearest free zone area and open a bank account there. Get all your payments to be sent there and go for a visit to collect every so many months.

Maybe some have negative comments about that, but I'm not going to enter into such discussions. I'm living in a free zone area. Having said that, it sounds like a legitimate business that I can go into if a number of you require collectors. I'll be thinking about it and maybe setting it up somewhere.



[Edited at 2007-03-04 01:00]
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