"We pay you when we get paid" ...
Thread poster: Ildiko Santana

Ildiko Santana  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 04:06
Member (2002)
English to Hungarian
+ ...

MODERATOR
Dec 11, 2007

Dear Colleagues,

I have only signed a contract like this twice in my entire career (15 years); my client pays me when they get paid by their client. The one time before this was a disaster, I never got paid ($880). This time, all the other terms just sounded too good and so I agreed to this otherwise unfair and rather risky condition. I loved the project, everything was great, four days of on-site translation with lovely people. My contact at the agency is also very nice and assured me early on to send me my check right away once they got theirs from end client. The project was completed on 10-26-07. Their due date was 11-26-07. I have already emailed the agency but received no answer. I would like to find out from you, would you approach the end client directly when the silence is getting too suspicious, to find out whether the first payment has been made and when? Or would you just stick it out and give them the full 30+30 day term, and then go to agency? Or, to both?

Thank you in advance for your advice!
Ildiko


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Lu Wang
Local time: 19:06
Chinese to English
+ ...
No harm approaching client Dec 12, 2007

I once did a small job and did not get paid. Then I complained to the end client, who was very concerned and promised to see through the matter. It turned out that they gave the agency a dressing down and maybe some threats, I don't know. The agency paid me right away but gave me a "dressing down", saying that I should not have approached the client etc.

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xxxBrandis
Local time: 13:06
English to German
+ ...
contact your local chamber of commerce... Dec 12, 2007

if you are a contributing member, they shall certainly help you. Brandis

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ViktoriaG  Identity Verified
Canada
Local time: 07:06
English to French
+ ...
The end client is a very important part of your contract Dec 12, 2007

Even though the end client has not negotiated and signed your contract, he is an indirect third party in your contract. Your contract says that the payment you receive is mostly based on the end client's actions. The end client isn't legally liable for anything toward you, but I would contact them, since they ultimately have control over your payment as per the contract signed with the agency.

If not for anything else, I would get in touch with the end client and check if and when they have paid. If they have paid a while ago, then go ahead and collect the agency.

Oh, and please, please, PLEASE, never sign a contract that says that you get paid when the end client pays. The last time, it was a disaster. It may well turn out to be a disaster again. Your contract binds only your client, not the client's client. So, whatever the client's client does should have nothing to do with any of the terms and conditions of the contract you have with the agency. Involving a third party in a contract the third party didn't sign is asking for trouble...


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MariusV  Identity Verified
Lithuania
Local time: 14:06
English to Lithuanian
+ ...
yes, do approach the client Dec 13, 2007

ildiko wrote:

Dear Colleagues,

I have only signed a contract like this twice in my entire career (15 years); my client pays me when they get paid by their client. The one time before this was a disaster, I never got paid ($880). This time, all the other terms just sounded too good and so I agreed to this otherwise unfair and rather risky condition. I loved the project, everything was great, four days of on-site translation with lovely people. My contact at the agency is also very nice and assured me early on to send me my check right away once they got theirs from end client. The project was completed on 10-26-07. Their due date was 11-26-07. I have already emailed the agency but received no answer. I would like to find out from you, would you approach the end client directly when the silence is getting too suspicious, to find out whether the first payment has been made and when? Or would you just stick it out and give them the full 30+30 day term, and then go to agency? Or, to both?

Thank you in advance for your advice!
Ildiko


Well, in general, the translator does not have the right to approach the client of the agency directly - it is like "by default". But the condition "we pay you when our client pays" unties your hands. You can simply send your contract copy to the end client and ask if they have paid the agency. + You still have the right to claim for intellectual rights for your translation.

Being in your shoes, I'd avoid these conditions. Best is - you and the agency have a separate agreement, and it does not matter what agreements the agency and the end client have. Let them deal and solve their mutual problems without involving you into all that. You deal with the agency and that is it.


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Ildiko Santana  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 04:06
Member (2002)
English to Hungarian
+ ...

MODERATOR
TOPIC STARTER
Yes, I took the risk Dec 13, 2007

Viktoria Gimbe wrote:

... please, please, PLEASE, never sign a contract that says that you get paid when the end client pays.
ur contract binds only your client, not the client's client. So, whatever the client's client does should have nothing to do with any of the terms and conditions of the contract you have with the agency. Involving a third party in a contract the third party didn't sign is asking for trouble... [/quote]

Thank you so much, to all of you, and Victoria especially -- you said it so well what I already *knew* but refused to keep in mind when the opportunity presented itself. I really wanted to fly across the States, stay and work some place new, with new people, and experience the challenge and the satisfaction of a job well done. So, like a spoiled kid I agreed to these terms, fully aware of the risk. I realize it's about time I grew up! =)

Thank you for sharing your views and for the good advice; I hope it will save many colleagues from making the mistake I made.


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