getting paid
Thread poster: paolo della bella

paolo della bella  Identity Verified
Switzerland
Local time: 12:45
French to Italian
+ ...
Sep 5, 2010

Hi! I have 2 customers who are late in paying their bills for past translations. My questions are:

-) How do I get them to pay, since they keep saying tomorrow and then... here I am.

-) Can I charge them legal interest for the late payment?


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Tom in London
United Kingdom
Local time: 11:45
Member (2008)
Italian to English
First Sep 5, 2010

paolo della bella wrote:

Hi! I have 2 customers who are late in paying their bills for past translations. My questions are:

-) How do I get them to pay, since they keep saying tomorrow and then... here I am.

-) Can I charge them legal interest for the late payment?


First: name them and shame them on the BlueBoard.

Whey they find out, they may ask you to remove your negative comment and to post a positive one in exchange for payment (this has happened to me a couple of times).

Pretend you'll do that, and wait to be paid.

[Edited at 2010-09-05 14:55 GMT]


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Teresa Borges
Portugal
Local time: 11:45
Member (2007)
English to Portuguese
+ ...
Interest rates on late payments Sep 5, 2010

Check this out: http://europa.eu/legislation_summaries/internal_market/single_market_services/financial_services_banking/l24197_en.htm

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Jonathan Spector  Identity Verified
Israel
Local time: 13:45
Member
Hebrew to English
A matter of interest Sep 5, 2010

Since interest is close to zero these days, don't worry about it.

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Nicole Schnell  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 03:45
English to German
+ ...
@Jonathan Spector Sep 5, 2010

Jonathan Spector wrote:

Since interest is close to zero these days, don't worry about it.


Cough, cough. The original poster can set up pretty much any interest rate he desires. You pay interest rates to banks or credit card companies or anyone you owe money. Or are you actually financing your car or your house at an interest rate close to zero? Tell me where you live, I wish to become your neighbor.



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Williamson  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 11:45
Flemish to English
+ ...
ECB's website Sep 5, 2010

The interest-rate is the interest rate of the ECB and can be found on its website.

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M.S.
Spain
Local time: 12:45
English to Spanish
+ ...
and what if... Sep 7, 2010

and what if he doesn't mind the BlueBoard? I explain myself:

I'm in the same situation right now. My client keeps saying she's going to pay soon, but I'm afraid I'll never see the money. I'm pretty desperate.
I like the BlueBoard solution but, since she hasn't contacted me via this site, I'm afraid she wouldn't give it a fig...

Do you have any other ideas?
Thanks a lot!

paolo della bella wrote:

Hi! I have 2 customers who are late in paying their bills for past translations. My questions are:

-) How do I get them to pay, since they keep saying tomorrow and then... here I am.

-) Can I charge them legal interest for the late payment?


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John Rawlins  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 12:45
Spanish to English
+ ...
Go see them Sep 7, 2010

M.S. wrote:

Do you have any other ideas?
Thanks a lot!



The simplest way to get paid is to go see them. Take a friend and refuse to leave until they pay you. Visit them at home if you can find their address (try Googling).

If this means travelling, then why not make a few sales calls at the same time?

If it isn't worth the effort and cost of travelling, then you could try phoning every day, then twice every day.

Also try negotiating part payment. 'If you can't pay me everything, then how much can you pay today... and next week... and the week after that...'.

In other words, get personal and get as close as you can.

People who are prepared to take these steps are generally paid. The others are left waiting.

Good luck - but make your own luck!


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Sarah Silva  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 11:45
Member (2008)
German to English
+ ...
Phone, email and phone again! Sep 7, 2010

I have to say I'm pretty lucky with my customers and generally get paid on time but I do keep a close eye on when invoices are due - I usually allow a week's grace but be aware of any unusual patterns with regular clients.

Late 2008 I was owed about 900 euros by one customer who was usually a prompt payer and after gentle reminders I eventually ended up hassling them every day by phone and following up each phone call with a written confirmation by email to all contacts at the company.

I did get paid and decided not to accept any more work from them. A couple of months later I received an email from an administrator saying that the company had gone bust and any outstanding payments owed should be filed with the solicitors and basically hope that you get something back.

Persistence is key and see if you can reach higher management or another contact in the company. Then once you receive payment, decide whether it's worth the hassle of chasing them every month when they offer you another project.


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M.S.
Spain
Local time: 12:45
English to Spanish
+ ...
You're right Sep 8, 2010

I'll have to try the phone method.
I'm really sad, because I work hard and take my job seriously. It's not fair. How annoying!
Thanks for the ideas. I'll fight!


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Soonthon LUPKITARO(Ph.D.)  Identity Verified
Thailand
Local time: 17:45
Member (2004)
English to Thai
+ ...
Honest and dishonest non-payers Sep 9, 2010

Sarah Silva wrote:

I did get paid and decided not to accept any more work from them. A couple of months later I received an email from an administrator saying that the company had gone bust and any outstanding payments owed should be filed with the solicitors and basically hope that you get something back.

Persistence is key and see if you can reach higher management or another contact in the company. Then once you receive payment, decide whether it's worth the hassle of chasing them every month when they offer you another project.


Many agencies could not pay out of this recent economic recession, but they paid after the situations were remedied. For dishonest non-payers, I needed to use particular methods e.g. billing to the end-user or subcontractor of the translation, writing to Proz blueboard, claim for retaining copyright of translation (derivative product copyright) etc. Not all cases were successful but we can struggle to authenticate our right to be paid.

Soonthon Lupkitaro


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