What To Do When Clients Refuse To Pay Their Invoices

 In Invoices

It has become a recurring theme for freelance professionals and entrepreneurs not to get paid for services rendered to a select few clients.  Clients trying to cut corners and avoid paying for service they requested is now becoming a norm rather than isolated cases.

Here are a few things that can be done to mitigate or solve the situation:

  • Send out a reminder

Do not hesitate to send a mail to the owing client asking to be paid. There’s a possibility that the client may have either not seen the invoice or forgotten to make payment on the required due date.

  • Seek lawyer advice

This works especially when the client is either ignoring your requests and calls for payment. The lawyer will always advise on the best possible course of action.

  • Reach out to the company decision maker

In the event, that the project was handled for a large corporation. When it comes to late payment, it may be best to reach out to the company CEO if one has access or reach out to the company finance department. This will escalate the situation and make for faster remittance.

  • Hire a collection agency

These are agencies that have made collecting debts on behalf of a third party for a fee their duty. A search on Google would help find reputable agencies that will guarantee to get payment over a defined period.

  • Offer options

Be flexible in the collection. It could be the client may be going through a bit of financial downturn and may not be able to make the full payment immediately. Offer an opportunity to pay back weekly, monthly or quarterly. Whatever decision that is reached has to be one that favors both parties.

  • Take the client to court

In the event where all of the above has been tried, and the client has still refused to make payment. This is the part where legal action has to be taken against the client in court. The process takes a little bit of time but is usually the best option. This will make payment faster as the client knows you have a much bigger and stronger backing.

A little advice for the future would be to collect 70% of total fee before the start of the project and also ensure that a formal contract is signed by parties involved to guarantee there is an obligation to pay.

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