No payment by Spanish direct client
Thread poster: Rolf Kern

Rolf Kern  Identity Verified
Switzerland
Local time: 06:26
English to German
+ ...
Sep 14, 2015

I did a technical translation for an Engineering firm based in Madrid (I think that I am not allowed here to name the firm). It was an English to German translation about the Decommisioning of a Nuclear Power Plant in Slovakia. My Invoice of January 23, 2014, amounted to CHF 2,219.00.

In February 2, 2914, the Project Manager that gave me the job, wrote.

"Sorry for the delay in my answer and thanks a lot for your work. I have just checked with our financial department and your invoice is correct. Please send us as soon as possible the original document of your invoice (the same you have already sent scanned in advance, signed and/or stamped) via postal to [postal address given].

Thanks again for your work."

That's what I did and that was it.

On March 9 and 13, 2014, I sent a reminder to this PM.

As far as I remember, I also phoned him, and he said that the company has some financial problems, but that I will certainly be paid next month.

And that was it again.

I sent him and the Financial Department of his company a countless number of reminders, the last on June 6, 2015, also suggesting partial payment.

No reply whatsoever.

Did anybody of you have similar problems with a Spanish client? What was the outcome and what can be done?

Thanks

Rolf


 

Inga Petkelyte  Identity Verified
Portugal
Local time: 05:26
Lithuanian to Portuguese
+ ...
Sorry to hear that Sep 14, 2015

It always hurts to hear such stories...
1. The first thing I'd do - checking whether the company is still existing and/or solvent. There are some free online resources for that.
2. If you have anyone in Spain whom you are comfortable to ask, let that person call directly the company (provided your findings re above are positive; otherwise, not always makes sense). To my experience, a voice from "here, next to me" makes often a difference.
I was thinking, even yesterday, about an idea of creating such country-wise self-support groups. The local presence proves to be disciplining.


 

Álvaro Espantaleón  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 06:26
Member (2015)
English to Spanish
+ ...
Monitorio Sep 14, 2015

You will have to use a legal proceeding called Monitorio or even better a Monitorio Europeo. However, your chances of getting paid are small.

 

Sheila Wilson  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 05:26
Member (2007)
English
+ ...
First, check out the company Sep 14, 2015

They should be here: http://www.rmc.es/Home.aspx?lang=en

By their own admission they're in financial difficulty, so they're stringing you along while paying their more forceful creditors. If they've already filed for bankruptcy, all you can do is register your invoice with the official receiver - instructions will probably be given on that site.

If they haven't, then you still have a chance of getting something (I've dealt with receiverships twice now and never saw a cent either timeicon_frown.gif). But you must make your claim seem important enough for them to settle, and speed is of the essence. So far, you've played into their hands by sitting on your hands and waiting patiently. A recovery company might be the best solution in this case, even though they will take probably 30%. Another possible solution is to make a real nuisance of yourself by chasing payment very frequently, although you have to guard against any form of harassment.

But check them out first as nobody, not even the courts, can get money out of a bankrupt company; only the official receiver can do that by realising all their assets and then paying all possible debts. Also, please warn off other translators, by leaving an entry on their Blue Board record indicating non-payment.


 

Rolf Kern  Identity Verified
Switzerland
Local time: 06:26
English to German
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
@Inga Sep 14, 2015

Many thanks

1. The company seems to be still existing, but what are the online resources that can inform me whether it is solvent?

2. Unfortunately, I do not know anybody resident in Spain, who could help.

Addional Information:

I have commissioned a German Lawyer resident in Spain (Barcelona) to help me, to which he agreed. He sent an extra-courtal reminder to the company that cost me EUR 302,50. Without reaction. Now to go over the courts he instructed me to send him a Power of Attorney executed by my Notary. That would have cost me another CHF 230.00 (EUR 218,00) just in German language, not to speak of the translation into Spanish. I asked this Lawyer to inform me of the probable additional cost and the chances to be successful. I did not get any answer.

Rolf Kern
Zurich, Switzerland


 

Álvaro Espantaleón  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 06:26
Member (2015)
English to Spanish
+ ...
Don't need a lawyer Sep 14, 2015

Rolf Kern wrote:

Many thanks

1. The company seems to be still existing, but what are the online resources that can inform me whether it is solvent?

2. Unfortunately, I do not know anybody resident in Spain, who could help.

Addional Information:

I have commissioned a German Lawyer resident in Spain (Barcelona) to help me, to which he agreed. He sent an extra-courtal reminder to the company that cost me EUR 302,50. Without reaction. Now to go over the courts he instructed me to send him a Power of Attorney executed by my Notary. That would have cost me another CHF 230.00 (EUR 218,00) just in German language, not to speak of the translation into Spanish. I asked this Lawyer to inform me of the probable additional cost and the chances to be successful. I did not get any answer.

Rolf Kern
Zurich, Switzerland



You don't need a lawyer for a Monitorio.


 

Inga Petkelyte  Identity Verified
Portugal
Local time: 05:26
Lithuanian to Portuguese
+ ...
The name of the company? Sep 14, 2015

Rolf, can you pm the company name? I have subsribed to one of such services - that is, if the Link that Sheila has indicated would be insufficient - and I hope I still have credit for couple company checks.
Indeed, the lawyer is in the very last place to hire, if any at all. In contrast with the UK practices, lawyers here charge for every movement they do. No guarantees, though. By the way, have you checked the PoA cost in the ES Embassy locally? Or is it too far from your place? Foreign PoAs have to be still apostilled, another cost to add. But really, suspend the lawyer idea for now. First, checking the solvency. Then Monitorio. Eventual last call in between.


 

Andrea Halbritter  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 06:26
Member (2014)
French to German
+ ...
Debt collecting agency Sep 14, 2015

Maybe you want to try a debt collecting agency?

I know a good one in France which works nearly worldwide and you pay only if they get your money back. If not it's free:

http://www.cash-and-collect.fr/


 


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