May invoice still unpaid after 4 reminders.
Thread poster: Lorenzo Rossi

Lorenzo Rossi  Identity Verified
Switzerland
Local time: 08:15
Member (2010)
German to Italian
+ ...
Nov 17, 2017

Dear Ladies and Gentlemen.

A UK based company still owes me 250 GBP for a invoice dated 31.5.2017. I have sent 4 payment reminders. Last payment reminder on 10.10. They always said that they have problems with their bank and that they would pay as soon they have solved this.

I contacted Proz.com but they said that they can't help.

What can I do?


Best regards


Lorenzo Rossi


 

Tomás Cano Binder, BA, CT  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 08:15
Member (2005)
English to Spanish
+ ...
Record them in the Blueboard Nov 17, 2017

Help fellow translators stay away from the company. Add them to the Blueboard as the first measure.

 

Lorenzo Rossi  Identity Verified
Switzerland
Local time: 08:15
Member (2010)
German to Italian
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Blueboard record Nov 17, 2017

Hi Tomàs.

They have got about 30 or more negative feedbacks and they have been banned from posting jobs on Proz.com

Best regards


Lorenzo


 

Jennifer Forbes  Identity Verified
Local time: 07:15
Member (2006)
French to English
+ ...
Telephone? Nov 17, 2017

Have you tried telephoning them? Sometimes that works. If that doesn't help, then I agree with Tomás that you should give them a low score on the Blue Board.
Good luck!


 

Sheila Wilson  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 07:15
Member (2007)
English
+ ...
Speed is of the essence, perhaps? Nov 17, 2017

It sounds as though they have major cash-flow problems, on top of what was probably always a pretty nasty attitude to their suppliers. Some things you can do:

- Send a more formal final demand. On paper, sent by post to their head office, and get the post office to make them sign for it and then return the proof to you. Companies know that's often followed by legal action. Look online for final demand wording.
- Contact other translators complaining of non-payment and swap stories. They may be able to help.
- Check out the company on the Companies House website. If they've filed for bankruptcy then instructions will be on there.
- If your translation has been published, you could consider warning the end client that they are breaching your intellectual property rights and you may have to sue if they keep using the text. That isn't a nice thing to do, but it did do the trick for me once.

Other things cost money:
- lawyer's letter
- debt recovery company
- small claims procedure


 

Vadim Kadyrov  Identity Verified
Ukraine
Local time: 09:15
Member (2011)
English to Russian
+ ...
I am afraid that after 30+ negative BlueBoard entries it just won`t happen Nov 17, 2017

Look, there are some 30+ people there trying to get their payment. I believe that this number is just too big to expect anything from them. And I think they decided to "go down this road" long time ago.

Let it be a lesson - don`t work for non-payers, especially when some 30 people used to report similar issues before.

[Edited at 2017-11-17 13:26 GMT]


 

Carla Catolino
Italy
Local time: 08:15
Member (2008)
Italian to English
+ ...
Shouldn't that have... Nov 17, 2017

given you an idea in the first place?
I always check the Blue board before starting a project with new clients. If their rating is poor, then I don't work for them.
Lorenzo Rossi wrote:


Hi Tomàs.

They have got about 30 or more negative feedbacks and they have been banned from posting jobs on Proz.com

Best regards


Lorenzo


 

Nikki Scott-Despaigne  Identity Verified
Local time: 08:15
French to English
Excuses Nov 18, 2017

Lorenzo Rossi wrote:

A UK based company still owes me 250 GBP for a invoice dated 31.5.2017. I have sent 4 payment reminders. Last payment reminder on 10.10. They always said that they have problems with their bank and that they would pay as soon they have solved this.

I contacted Proz.com but they said that they can't help.



The company is making excuses. Either they don't care, or they are in financial trouble; they know that for GBP250, you are unlikely to engage debt collectors or lawyers to recover it.

It is normal that Proz cannot help. If you actually got the job through the Jobs section here, it's basicaclly little more than a noticeboard. Your contract is with the company, not with ProZ.

GBP250 is an amount that is irritating to be without when you have done the work. However, it is an amount that would be expensive to recover through traditional channels, (lawyers, debt collectors, etc. would cost too much). I think there is a small claims procedure you might like to try.

Whatever you do decide to do, you need to do so really quickly. If the company is going bankrupt, once any salaries due have been paid, the taxman is usually next in line, followed by people like pension funds and so on. That usually leaves nothing for suppliers. Formalise your demand as soon as you can, consider the small claims proceudre, which I think can be done online, and which may be free and then, sadly, you may just have to forget about it.


 

Michael Newton  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 02:15
Member (2003)
Japanese to English
+ ...
Unpaid invoices Nov 19, 2017

I have solved this problem by doing business only with U.S.-based agencies. It is easier to go after them if they don't pay.

 

mariealpilles  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 08:15
Member (2014)
English to French
+ ...
May invoive still unpaid Nov 19, 2017

I think I do know which agency you are referring to. You will get paid if you threaten them with sending them a debt collector, and if needs be contact one. Stop being kind to them since they are actually crooks: when you press for your payment, they will definitely invent stories such as I am ill, we will pay you next week, bla bla bla. You have to be really firm and threatening. Also state that you will post a damning report on BB and they will try to ask you to change it if they pay you immediately. I have been there but got paid, late, but they pay after threatening them and writing to Company House to report them.

 

FarkasAndras
Local time: 08:15
English to Hungarian
+ ...
Not much Nov 19, 2017

Lorenzo Rossi wrote:


Dear Ladies and Gentlemen.

A UK based company still owes me 250 GBP for a invoice dated 31.5.2017. I have sent 4 payment reminders. Last payment reminder on 10.10. They always said that they have problems with their bank and that they would pay as soon they have solved this.

I contacted Proz.com but they said that they can't help.

What can I do?


Best regards


Lorenzo Rossi


I would send them a sternly worded letter threatening legal action if the invoice is not paid in 7 days. If you have a friend who is a lawyer, have them send it.
If you were in the EU, I would suggest using the European Small Claims Procedure: https://e-justice.europa.eu/content_small_claims-42-en.do
I don't think that cheap and convenient option is open to you, so I think you should give up on it if the letter doesn't get them to pay. They will probably go bankrupt soon. Maybe you'll get half your money when the dust settles.


 

Sheila Wilson  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 07:15
Member (2007)
English
+ ...
Two final points from me Nov 19, 2017

Michael Newton wrote:
I have solved this problem by doing business only with U.S.-based agencies. It is easier to go after them if they don't pay.

Every business has to do due diligence, and one aspect of that is deciding who not to do business with. Limiting the geographical area to your own jurisdiction will always make debt recovery easier. Personally, I didn't want to be restricted to the European Union so I approach the problem on non-payment from another angle: I normally only do business with those I have 99% trust in. I do a certain amount of checking on every potential clients, and if I'm at all anxious I do a lot or I just say no. I refuse to have anything to do with most potential Spanish clients, I'm afraid to say, but - leaving aside many B2B clients in the EU - I've recently been working with a start-up in China and I edited the first book of a private individual from Germany. I've had my share of late payers of course, but I've only ever had to take two almost to the wire before they paid up, plus one I did actually successfully sue. That's in 20 years. A couple of bankruptcies have been my only losses to date. I'm not meaning to boast; just pointing out that non-payment isn't some sort of inevitability.

mariealpilles wrote:
I think I do know which agency you are referring to. You will get paid if you threaten them with sending them a debt collector, and if needs be contact one. Stop being kind to them since they are actually crooks: when you press for your payment, they will definitely invent stories such as I am ill, we will pay you next week, bla bla bla. You have to be really firm and threatening. Also state that you will post a damning report on BB and they will try to ask you to change it if they pay you immediately. I have been there but got paid, late, but they pay after threatening them and writing to Company House to report them.

Now that we know about their record, I tend to agree with you. They probably weren't on the verge of bankruptcy during that whole time of poor BB entries. They more likely discovered that to avoid cash-flow problems all they have to do is rake the money in from their clients ... and stall their suppliers for as long as possible. Despicable behaviour, but borderline legal I'm afraid icon_mad.gif.


 

Lorenzo Rossi  Identity Verified
Switzerland
Local time: 08:15
Member (2010)
German to Italian
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Thank you for your useful tips. Nov 20, 2017

Dear Ladies and Gentlemen


Thank you very much for your help and tips.
Special thanks to Miss Wilson, Miss Nikki Scott Despaigne and Mister Farkas.
Their tips are very useful.


Have a very nice week.
Best regards

Lorenzo


 


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May invoice still unpaid after 4 reminders.

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