Impact of Pay After Work. A Client Ordered More Than as Usual Then They Don’t Pay


One of my clients isn't paying the invoice that we sent, what should I do?

I have a client, that we worked for them and managed some of their clients. Everything was normal, but In September <year>, he ordered more than as usual, I assumed he's a good guy, so I stopped asking him for payment. He was paying us $1200 – $1500 depending on the projects per month, but the last time, (September), he ordered a lot, and end of the month I billed him $6400 dollar.

Then he started ghosting me, and after almost 2 months he paid only $1200. I gave him discount and the last bill was $5500. He said, he will pay, but I feel like he has no intention. But he still using our services and paying upfront, but never talking about that payment. I have no hope, even I stopped asking that payment. Now he's still using our services with upfront payment, but not paying the due. What should I do? I also, taking 100% upfront, but as I said, I assumed he was a good guy and paid on time for the first few months, that's why last time I stopped asking for payment. Now I'm suffering.
19 💬🗨

Find a small practice attorney. I have one that I use infrequently, but he's not part of any law firm or anything.

I had a client ghost me on a $4k bill, they went a different direction but thought they could stiff me on the work I did. I talked with my attorney, for $200 he wrote a letter mailed it, and emailed it to my client. Got paid the next day with apologizes. I was willing to goto court, why wouldn't I, in our state we can also collect attorneys fees.

Now, in all reality, your friend / client here is in a tough spot, if they had the money, they'd pay it. Chances are they don't, or don't see the value. Figure out an amount that is fair and you'll accept, give them one last chance. If they don't, send the attorney going for it all.

In the Netherlands we have collection agencies and bailiffs who do the chasing. Usually no need to go to court, unless they keep on ghosting you.

The thing about the US Legal system is very few things actually goto court. the threat of it is all that is required.

I don't think you are being upfront enough with your client. It sounds like you are avoiding the "when are you going to pay up what you owe" question.

My advice would be to sit him down and explain that his outstanding invoice is still there and needs paying.

Tell him that he could pay monthly on top of the pay as you go services he is currently getting you to perform.

Put yourself in his shoes for a minute, it's probably in the back of his mind and he knows it needs paying. He might just not have the funds to clear the balance all in one go.

👉 Never do any work without payment up front. If the payment stops, the work stops. No exceptions. Even if you are doing the work yourself, labor costs money. Every second you work without payment is money out of your pocket.
👉 Stop working on this job immediately. There is no point losing even more money.
👉 Sign up for a Legal Shield business account. It's like $50/mo. As part of the service, you can get a lawyer to write a collection letter. They might even make a collection phone call, but I don't remember if that's included. In my experience, most people will pay when lawyers get involved. No one wants a lawsuit.

Once you get paid, refer to #1 if they want to Renée service.
The more time passes, the more the rates of collection agencies become unfavourable. Additionally, in Canada once two years passes, you will not be unable to sue or collect. The matter will be considered legally settled.

Time is not on your side. If they can't pay you now their business is failing. That, or they are unscrupulous- or both. Chances will only increase that they will not be able to pay you later for any number of reasons including bankruptcy. Don't give them enough rope to hang you with. Remeber this- who are you going to pay first- the person you should have paid three months ago or the person who demands money now? It's the person who demands money now. Why? The person who has been owed for three months has now established that they can continue to not be paid and there are no repercusssions.

Face this head on and deal with it now. Learn from the mistake and have a firm policy on payment moving forward for this client and all others. Take action on offenders immediately based on your policy and not on feelings. The more time you waste thinking about this issue, the higher the cost both monetarily and mentally.


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