is per diem payment obligatory?
Thread poster: Kristina Wolf

Kristina Wolf  Identity Verified
Australia
Local time: 04:36
Member (2004)
Spanish to German
+ ...
Nov 26, 2010

Hi guys,

I live in the UK, have an assignment in the UK, paid by a UK based agency for a full week where I am staying over night for 4 nights. After I received the accomodation confirmation by the hotel I noticed that breakfast is not included in the room rate and pointed that out to the agency. I offered to have breakfast somewhere nearby (if they could tell me where) as it is usually cheaper and have now received the following reply:
" I have not been able to locate any breakfast place so I leave it up to you. However I just wanted to clarify that we don’t cover evening meals."
This is the first time that something like this has happened to me. Normally in all assignments the breakfast is included and then a per diem is paid for each night that one has to stay. My question now is, do I have a legal right in the UK to charge this?

Thanks for your help on this.

Kristina


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Susanna Garcia  Identity Verified
Local time: 17:36
Italian to English
+ ...
Don't think so Nov 26, 2010

Hi Kristina,

I don't believe that the agency is legally obliged to pay for dinner I am surprised though that you didn't sort this out beforehand as well as getting a hotel with breakfast included. Are you at least getting travel expenses? Just a thought, keep your receipts anyway and use them for tax deductions.
I'm wondering if you've been working with the courts as they do pay for meals etc.
Hope your assignment goes well.

Suzi


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Kristina Wolf  Identity Verified
Australia
Local time: 04:36
Member (2004)
Spanish to German
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Thanks Suzi Nov 27, 2010

Hi Suzi,

Thanks for your reply.

I work as conference interpreter and not for the courts, and have never had this type of issue before. By the way, the assignment hasn't started yet, so I am trying to sort it out beforehand. The PO states that travel expenses are included and I was very surprised when I received the hotel confirmation to not have breakfast included, that is such a "no brainner", I have never ever had the need to point that out in any contract. It usually just says overnight accomodation. And with every overnight stay a per diem gets included automatically on the contracts, unless the end client provides dinner. That's why it didn't even cross my mind to ask for this specifically.

Regards

Kristina


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Pablo Bouvier  Identity Verified
Local time: 18:36
German to Spanish
+ ...
is per diem payment obligatory? Nov 27, 2010

Kristina Wolf wrote:

Hi guys,

I live in the UK, have an assignment in the UK, paid by a UK based agency for a full week where I am staying over night for 4 nights. After I received the accomodation confirmation by the hotel I noticed that breakfast is not included in the room rate and pointed that out to the agency. I offered to have breakfast somewhere nearby (if they could tell me where) as it is usually cheaper and have now received the following reply:
" I have not been able to locate any breakfast place so I leave it up to you. However I just wanted to clarify that we don’t cover evening meals."
This is the first time that something like this has happened to me. Normally in all assignments the breakfast is included and then a per diem is paid for each night that one has to stay. My question now is, do I have a legal right in the UK to charge this?

Thanks for your help on this.

Kristina



not legally mandatory, but is of common sense that if a company hires you away from your home, to take care of the expenses, or to pay you a daily diet. But, of course all this must be contractually agreed before accepting the job.

Certainly, you can not make an interpretation in two different places at the same time. But, for example, when I have attended mandatory translation courses outside of my home, I have always required the inclusion of the meals or an equivalent daily diet, and that the hotel had wifi to be able to continue working after the training hours. I can not leave my customers hanging for a week, because I have to attend a training...




[Edited at 2010-11-27 20:37 GMT]


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Post removed: This post was hidden by a moderator or staff member for the following reason: Empty post

Parrot  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 18:36
Member (2002)
Spanish to English
+ ...
Sounds like a mistake/oversight Dec 5, 2010

The breakfast part, anyway. Time was when booking a hotel ordinarily meant breakfast. However, you're right in that evening meals and taxis are generally covered by the client, either on a voucher basis or through some per diem calculated at the local rate. If the intermediary forgot to factor these, it's not your fault. Suzi's solution sounds feasible, but I'd tell the agency anyway that you're doing this out of goodwill and do not expect the incident to repeat itself in the future.

Cecilia


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Narasimhan Raghavan  Identity Verified
Local time: 23:06
English to Tamil
+ ...
Be specific and cove all the points while you quote Dec 5, 2010

For interpreting jobs that permit me to return home daily after the job is over, I charge 1. Per hour rate with the minimum billing for 2 hours per day, 2. Taxi fare both sides, residence to place of work and back, 3. Coffee/tea/lunch etc as applicable during the working hours.

For jobs that require overnight stay outside my city of residence, I charge 1. Per hour rate with the minimum billing for 10 hours per day, 2. The entire cost of transport, 3. Boarding and lodging in a good hotel during the stay out of station.

That having been clarified right from the beginning, you will have no problems.

Regards,
N. Raghavan


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Kristina Wolf  Identity Verified
Australia
Local time: 04:36
Member (2004)
Spanish to German
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Outcome Dec 6, 2010

Just wanted to update you on the outcome. The agency is paying dinner at a per cost basis now, slightly helped by the fact that it snowed in the UK which means it's difficult to go from A to B and they would have needed to make sure I can stay near to the client's location anyway, otherwise I wouldn't have been able to drive there.

At least the chat with the PM was friendly and they recognized that they should have pointed that out from the beginning as it is normal practice that travel expenses include dinner in case of overnight stay.

Regards

Kristina


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