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Survive And Live With The Customer Who Does Not Pay

Even freelancers have deadlines like all VAT numbers, albeit facilitated, and your accountant should have told you. Right? Well, because surviving nowadays is already challenging in itself, if we then go and add working for free, it’s worth migrating to a new country. 

Because it is the country it is, can you afford not to pay at the agreed deadline or close a business because it is full of debt and open a new one using the name of the wife (figurehead )? These fantastic “games,” among many things, have sent professionals and companies upside down, hundreds of thousands, leading to disgrace.

ALSO READ: Is Your Company Fit For The Future?

You, a freelancer, are particularly at risk. Do you know that? Because in 2015, you are still regarded as a weak link in society: an unemployed 2.0. This is not the reality, especially if you have chosen to start your own business. However, this can cause you many problems, such as not seeing you provide financing for a car or a simple PC, which is fundamental for your business. That’s why you need to know how to live with a customer who doesn’t pay, and here are some tips on how you can survive this misadventure.

Methods Of Coexistence With The Customer Who Does Not Pay

  • Once the invoice has been issued, always send a copy by email to the customer. Before sending it, however, close the sentence with a “Waiting for payment, I remain available for any new ones” or a more informal “As soon as the transfer has been made, can you notify me? Thank you. 
  • Has it already been a week since your invoice expired, and the home banking keeps telling you that no bank transfer has been received? This is the first alarm bell. I always start with a polite reminder email. If I do not accept any credit in the 2/3 days to come, I go to the phone call. Also, in this case, do not allow yourself to commit terrorism. Always use good manners but make it clear that you are not joking, with a severe tone, especially if you had been promised, like “Monday I’ll pay you!” They were not kept. You are a professional. You don’t have to be fooled.
  • Whether it is an agency or a company, it happens to be told this: “As soon as I receive the transfer from PincoPallo, I will pay you.” This is one of the most uncomfortable situations because you are faced with a customer who works only with what he gets or who has scratched the bottom of the barrel and used the money that was due to you for his business. Therefore, the is pulling for length. Here, in this case, the line is skinny between “I can no longer give you extensions” and “go to that country! I worked, and now I’m coming to get my money. Make sure you find them!”. This will allow you to maintain a dialogue with the client who does not pay without going through unnecessary threats or passing through letters from lawyers, which will never let you review the money in the short term, if not to lose it;
  • The company for which you have lent your activities is not in good water, and they give you transparency by telling you that they will not be able to pay you shortly. Well, indeed, bad! Because the homeowner does not wait for the rent and the refrigerator does not fill itself. The first thing you need to do is think about your credit, how to take it all home, then immediately set two safe dates with the company contact, in an honest time frame for both parties, and sign that commitment in black and white. . In this way you will have some more chance of seeing your efforts paid off, even if diluted in the months to come;
  • “I no longer have a lira. I’m sorry. The only thing I can offer you is to give you what you are entitled to be Royalties….” She escapes, and on the way, you stop by your lawyer. You are facing a dinosaur, something bigger than you, and you better protect yourself;
  • Never work for just one client. In addition to precluding you from potential further work, in the event of economic difficulty, you will have no other sources of credit;
  • Never work for friends and family. Not even for the company in which your brother or mother works! This will make you more vulnerable in collecting payments because there is a family connection to them.

Methods Of Survival With The Customer Who Does Not Pay

  • Every holy month, as soon as you receive the payments, always ensure that you have some money left in the cashier because the possibility of outstanding fees can always arise in the following weeks. This will give you more financial autonomy and a guarantee of survival;
  • If you want to invest, whatever it is in terms of volume, before making it, always check that you can maintain its commitment in all its short or long deadlines in parallel with your existing projects and upcoming collections. This will give you some extra guarantees to always walk on your legs, even if the storm of the customer who does not pay arises;
  • If you have to leave behind some deadlines, as long as it is a few days (not weeks), do it with the bills of standard utilities, such as electricity, gas, water, and telephone. If you pay late, you will be charged a late payment on your next bill, usually of a few Euros (if not a handful of cents, check the contract you have active), but it will allow you to receive late credits;
  • Do not make any unnecessary purchases during the period in which you have accumulated credits because the situation may not be released in a short time, and this would only lead to overloading your financial autonomy;
  • Look for new projects and collaborations, and do not scruple to contact a colleague you know could help you, professionally speaking, in case it could be the opportunity for a new and lasting relationship of work/collaboration.