Payment from a big company
Thread poster: elanorielle

elanorielle  Identity Verified
Russian Federation
Local time: 15:33
Irish to Russian
+ ...
May 24, 2013

Hello fellow translators, this is my first post ont the forum and I hope it complies with all the rules.

I worked on a very big translation project for a very well-known and big publisher here in Russia, it was in April, and according to the contract that both sides signed the payment should've been delivered via bank transfer within 30 banking days upon the completion of the project.

Now, the employer is way too big and well-known to be a scammer but last time I heard from them they promised to pay on the 13th of May, exactly 30 days after the submission of my work. I contacted them repeatedly afterwards but they never replied and the payment deadline has passed weeks ago.

What can I do in this situation (besides calling them and writing long eloquent emails)?

Thanks.


 

Marie-Helene Dubois  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 14:33
Member (2011)
Spanish to English
+ ...
did you contact them by phone? May 24, 2013

Sometimes this can help as people find it harder to be evasive by phone.

Speak to anyone you can, the person you dealt with, their accounts department, the manager of the company.

I would try that if you haven't done so already.

I have no clue about the system in Russia so I don't know whether it could work to send them a registered letter with a final demand, stating that you will commence action to obtain payment if you haven't received it within X working days.

You will most likely get your payment. It's not because they've exceeded the date that they necessarily don't intend to pay (although sometimes it feels like it when the other party doesn't keep their side of the bargain).

My general advice would be to be a very squeaky (but polite) wheel because the squeaky wheel gets the oil in these cases.

Good luck!


 

Mark Benson  Identity Verified

English to Swedish
+ ...
@ Marie-Helene Dubois May 24, 2013

elanorielle wrote:

What can I do in this situation (besides calling them and writing long eloquent emails)?

Thanks.


 

Kevin Fulton  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 08:33
German to English
Internal payment practices May 24, 2013

In many large companies there is a complete disconnect between the line production (in your case, editorial) departments and the accounting/accounts payable departments. Your contacts may have been well-intended by promising 30 day payment terms, but the accounts payable department may have a different policy. It's possible that they disburse only on the last day of the month, in which case you may have to wait a few more days. It's also possible that they pay net 45/60/90.

Basically you need to contact the accounting department of the publisher to find out what the problem may be. Your contacts in the editorial department (assuming that was the source of the job) may be totally clueless about the company's payment practices.


 

Artem Vakhitov  Identity Verified
Estonia
English to Russian
+ ...
Visit their office if you can or get a lawyer onboard May 25, 2013

elanorielle wrote:

Hello fellow translators, this is my first post ont the forum and I hope it complies with all the rules.

I worked on a very big translation project for a very well-known and big publisher here in Russia, it was in April, and according to the contract that both sides signed the payment should've been delivered via bank transfer within 30 banking days upon the completion of the project.

Now, the employer is way too big and well-known to be a scammer but last time I heard from them they promised to pay on the 13th of May, exactly 30 days after the submission of my work. I contacted them repeatedly afterwards but they never replied and the payment deadline has passed weeks ago.

What can I do in this situation (besides calling them and writing long eloquent emails)?

Thanks.


Well, I'm afraid there's nothing easy and free you can do in this case. I would first visit their office — several times if needed (that's what I had to do recently with one of my local clients). Then, if it doesn't work out, I would get a lawyer onboard — of only to write an email to their legal department with a promise to take the matter to court.

Good luck!


 

Artem Vakhitov  Identity Verified
Estonia
English to Russian
+ ...
Good point, too May 25, 2013

Kevin Fulton wrote:

In many large companies there is a complete disconnect between the line production (in your case, editorial) departments and the accounting/accounts payable departments. Your contacts may have been well-intended by promising 30 day payment terms, but the accounts payable department may have a different policy. It's possible that they disburse only on the last day of the month, in which case you may have to wait a few more days. It's also possible that they pay net 45/60/90.

Basically you need to contact the accounting department of the publisher to find out what the problem may be. Your contacts in the editorial department (assuming that was the source of the job) may be totally clueless about the company's payment practices.


This is a good point. In addition, it may not even be a matter of formal policy. Accountants may just arbitrarily prioritise other work that is more "important" in their subjective opinion (much larger sums, customers vs. vendors etc.). And then when you call or visit them they tell you they've lost your invoice, forgot about this (petty) sum, been sick, not received some (imaginary) approval yet etc.

[Edited at 2013-05-25 10:40 GMT]


 

Neil Coffey  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 13:33
French to English
+ ...
Agree with Kevin May 25, 2013

Kevin Fulton wrote:
In many large companies there is a complete disconnect between the line production (in your case, editorial) departments and the accounting/accounts payable departments. Your contacts may have been well-intended by promising 30 day payment terms, but the


This is one of the disadvantages of working for a large company -- there's a whole pipeline of admin that is nothing to do with the project you're working on or the people that you're dealing with.

An extra month doesn't sound anything to be too alarmed about. However, the employee you're dealing with may be able to get an answer from the accounts department about whether your payment will go through this month.


 

elanorielle  Identity Verified
Russian Federation
Local time: 15:33
Irish to Russian
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Thanks! May 28, 2013

Thank you so much for your replies and explanations.

I just got too nervous because I've never dealt with such situation before, at least now I know how it works.

I just got a reply from their department, seems that the issue is being settled.

All the best,
--Anna R.


 


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