"We have never received your invoice before" as a new excuse for payment delays
Thread poster: MariusV

MariusV  Identity Verified
Lithuania
Local time: 15:13
English to Lithuanian
+ ...
Aug 12, 2011

Seems that under new tendencies in translation business the answer phrase "Our accountant is on her maternity leave/giving a birth" to the payment reminders becomes old-fashioned and is actively replaced by "We have never received your invoice before". Have you noticed (or already experienced) that?

It actually drives me mad. Well, can't they tell frankly "We do not have sufficient cash at the moment to pay your invoice. We will pay it 4-5 weeks later. We are very sorry for the inc
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Seems that under new tendencies in translation business the answer phrase "Our accountant is on her maternity leave/giving a birth" to the payment reminders becomes old-fashioned and is actively replaced by "We have never received your invoice before". Have you noticed (or already experienced) that?

It actually drives me mad. Well, can't they tell frankly "We do not have sufficient cash at the moment to pay your invoice. We will pay it 4-5 weeks later. We are very sorry for the inconveniences". Here are several email copies received from one translation agency".


Hi Marius,

I have talked to our accountant and I'm afraid we cannot track down whether these
invoices might have already been paid because we changed systems. Sorry that
we can't be of more help!


Hi Marius,

I'm afraid we cannot pay invoices when we cannot make sure that they haven't been
paid before.


Hi Marius,

As such a long time has elapsed [I invoiced them in the middle of April, and asked about the payment status at the end of July, payment term was 30 days], we kindly request further information from you,
proving your claim. The POs alone are not proof of having completed the job. They
may have been cancelled, or if the deadline was not met or the quality was poor,
then it is possible that at the time an agreement was made not to pay for these
jobs, and you would have received a cancellation form.


Dear Marius,

Please find attached the payment confirmation.

Regards,
xxx

[The last one was received only when I faxed them a formal reminder letter with a serious intent to hire debt collectors]
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Anna ZANNELLA
Italy
Local time: 14:13
Italian to English
WORST IVE SEEN Aug 13, 2011

Marius,

My worst so far was POs with instructions for mandatory procedures regarding Invoices and deadlines, but to be sent to email addresses that didnt exist. This resulted in my Invoice being 'overlooked' despite my having sent the invoice to the email of the person who hired me. I later got the feeling that I was talking to 3 men in a car with a laptop and mobile phone as I was passed onto one non-existent department after another. Eventually after threatening Legal action I was
... See more
Marius,

My worst so far was POs with instructions for mandatory procedures regarding Invoices and deadlines, but to be sent to email addresses that didnt exist. This resulted in my Invoice being 'overlooked' despite my having sent the invoice to the email of the person who hired me. I later got the feeling that I was talking to 3 men in a car with a laptop and mobile phone as I was passed onto one non-existent department after another. Eventually after threatening Legal action I was paid, but it took a total of 9 weeks to get paid.

Your experience sounds worse.
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Heinrich Pesch  Identity Verified
Finland
Local time: 15:13
Member (2003)
Finnish to German
+ ...
Ask for automatic response Aug 13, 2011

For a new client I would send my invoice to the PO and the bookkeeping address, both with request for automatic response.

 

Nicole Schnell  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 05:13
English to German
+ ...
In memoriam
Also always send blind copies to yourself. Aug 13, 2011

Should there be any inquiries, you can always forward the original email including attachments. There.

A German agency once tried to play this game - I was able to simply forward the already sent email and invoice and everything was set. They had to admit that any technical shortcomings were on their side.


 

Laurent KRAULAND (X)  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 14:13
French to German
+ ...
Do they... Aug 13, 2011

Do they actually deny any business relationship between their PM and yourself?

 

Tina Vonhof
Canada
Local time: 06:13
Member (2006)
Dutch to English
+ ...
Send them your e-mail Aug 13, 2011

I always keep a copy of my 'sent' e-mail with the attached translation plus the automatic reply until the invoice has been paid. That way I can always forward those e-mails as proof. In addition, you can send them a new copy of the invoice.

 


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