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Decomposed
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I performed at a tradeshow for a company on 10 April and still have not been paid. To make a long story boring, I agreed on a fee, company is legit, I sent an invoice and W9. Numerous phone calls, emails and I even sent a hard copy of the invoice/contract. When I call, I get the runaround and a really rude person calls me back and I felt like a second class citizen on the phone with him. He said he would check into it and still have not heard back. The person who originally hired me, just keeps putting me off saying the check would be released in May....etc etc. I have been performing for over 10 years professionally and NEVER had this ever happen, even once. It must have happened at least once to someone here but I searched here on the Café and could not find any information. Any advice much appreciated. Smile
the Sponge
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Lawyer letter
Decomposed
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Yeah looking at that option....thanks..
Dannydoyle
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I am going to catch a lot of crap for this but here goes.

First I would forget the lawyer letter. It might cost more than you suspect.

How big is this company? I only ask because often they are on net 30 or net 45 with invoices. If you do not have it specifically in the contract then it is possible they are paying you on their terms. I am not faulting you for this or saying anything bad! Just saying how moat big companies work.

Often they do all the bills on one day of the month, thus the net 45 so it gives them time for holidays, weekends and such.

This is not in the least uncommon and if you do it long enough you have to keep track of what comes in when and sort of backtrack. The reason for people being rude is IF they are on net 45 and you are caking in less than 30 days you do not look good. It can ruin a client and make toy "seem" unprofessional. In reality all you want is to be paid. It is just looking at the same set of facts from a different perspective. (Mind you I do not see you as unprofessional.)

I think it can be this. It may not be! But this can be a problem.
Danny Doyle
<BR>Semper Occultus
<BR>In a time of universal deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act....George Orwell
Mindpro
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Exactly! Without even knowing all the specific details I am sure this could easily be another example of a consumer level/market performer attempting to work a professional market gig with professional market terms, operations and differences.

How did you state the terms of payment in the contract? Was this a last minute or short-notice booking?

I agree the lawyer letter is a terrible idea and advice here.
Decomposed
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Thanks MP and Danny. I have never had a company take this long. I was only dealing with a woman from the company and this was scheduled well in advance, about two months before the tradeshow. Its just the runaround and non communication that ticks me off. But Danny you are right on, I just want to be paid. I am not trying to stir up a mess with them at all. Since the gig, I would email the woman now and then and it seems she had no clue what is going on. She initially was suppose to bring the check on the gig date. My contract states specifically payment due before or on the date of the gig. Aside from her, I had a male call me on Thurs after I left a voicemail on the company tele number. He said he would look into it..All I wanted was communication which has been nearly nonexistent with the woman who hired me.

Stated in the contract payment by cash or check nlt 10 April It was emailed to the woman hirer along with W9.

Its Monday so another workweek. Hopefully I will hear something soon...Thanks again.
Ken Northridge
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I'd recommend a little patience also. Many schools I deal with take 3, 4, or 5 months to get paid, even though I state I expect to be paid on the day of the show. Some businesses are simply not run very well. However, most want to maintain their integrity. If the problem persists I'd try to reach out for the person's boss, or their boss, or someone in the company that cares about their integrity. You don't have to threaten anyone, just explain there has been an oversight and ask for their help.
"Love is the real magic." -Doug Henning
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WDavis
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Ok so I read this and here 2 distinct needs.
1. A defined collections policy/procedure
2. A better understanding of standard business practices for the industry you performed.

So when it comes to collections procedures. Here is a standard framework used across industries. 30-60-90. Step 1 when 30 days late call the AP department and verify what's going on and when payment will be sent. Follow up after the call with an email recapping the conversation. If it hits 60 days, repeat the same process but follow up instead to department manager and cc to AP clerk in the follow up email. 90 days - email the real buyer of your service, this is the person who said yes hire him, inform them you haven't been paid, include the correspondence of the manager and AP clerk. Ask what is going on. Finally, at 120 days you write off the amount as uncollectible, email them you will no longer work with them on future engagements, then 1099-C them for the cancelled debt.

Here is what is going on with this framework, 1 the collection period is within standard aging buckets so they are more likely to fit within their procedures. 2. They see you as more professional. 3. The clerks and line managers just don't want to deal with it so they delay, but more importantly they don't want their boss on them, so you escalate at each bucket to resolve, if it's not resolved you go to the real buyer, The approver. This is the one they fear and it usually is resolved then. 4. Finally, if it's still not resolved, let the IRS deal with it, but it keeps them having to pay. It's paying either you or the IRS. the 1099-C is reported and will force them to pay tax on the income. Large companies this is more a headache but usually gets the attention of the controller, senior management, as to why they failed to meet a debt obligation. This can have larger impacts to their going concern and credit covenants.

With business procedures: I am not sure of the industry as you haven't stated it or the company size. But based on what you have posted I can infer the following possibilities:
A) You never met the "real buyer" of your service
B) the company doesn't think much of you
C) the company has cash constraints

Finally, Danny has given you some solid advice on business billings

If you met the real buyer, the staff would know it and be more likely to pay your bill on time to avoid any bad news getting back to buyer. Since they are giving you a run around, you probably went thru HR and/or a vendor management on boarding, these people don't respect you as you are just a burden to them.

The worst possibility is they have cash constraints so they are slow paying/no paying to stay afloat. If that's the situation, you essentially worked for free and are better off 1099C and move on. It's not worth hassling payment for more than 4 months. Mind you I'm also presume a minimum 5 figure invoice if it's less then 5 figures shorten your time line to 90 days if less than 5,000 then cut it off after 60 days but at the end always 1099c.
Ken Northridge
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If this involves a "five figure" invoice please ignore my post. I haven't the slightest idea of how to handle that.
"Love is the real magic." -Doug Henning
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TomBoleware
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One time in ten years, that’s a great record.

Yes, with some companies it takes patience, patience, patience.

No I wouldn’t pay a lawyer yet, just don’t appear to be too pushy in the collection process.
Upset them and they will delay even longer. Good luck with it.


Tom
Do What Others Do And You Will Become Average

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Dannydoyle
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I should clarify. I do not believe they are delaying for any reason other than procedure. It may not be intentional.

The idea that they will delay longer if you upset them is not at all my point.

I think if they are just in the procedure and you do not understand it then you can look unprofessional, when all you really want is to be paid. But if it is procedure and industry standard it shows you don't know that and might not want to highlight that.

Plus when they want another performer they may search for one who does understand.
Danny Doyle
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<BR>In a time of universal deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act....George Orwell
Bill Hegbli
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As Danny said, the larger the company the longer it takes to pay invoices. Make sure you got the invoice to the accounting department. Then ask what is their time for payment of invoices. I am sure, even though you have not had this experience, when you deal with large companies, it is the norm.

Also you might not be paid by the company but an outside advertising or trade show company. To keep all he expenses under the proper title or area of expense.

Many trade show payments can take a long as a year to get paid. That is why when you enter a field you find out what you will need to operate in the that field and live while waiting for the check.

Sounds like you did not get a contract signed up front, the contract is proof you had a deal, and it should also state when payment is due. The invoice is only for the accounting department, without an invoice they cannot process your claim.

If all you had was a verbal over the phone agreement, then you are at their mercy, so just sit back and wait, not matter how long it takes.

There is a book called "The Contract Book by Jim Kleefeld" on putting together contacts as magicians with samples. It has been updated from the original before the Internet boom.

They are also under the impression they have hired a professional person, if you sound desperate to get your money, you will lose that image.
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WDavis
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Quote:
On May 8, 2017, Dannydoyle wrote:
I should clarify. I do not believe they are delaying for any reason other than procedure. It may not be intentional.

The idea that they will delay longer if you upset them is not at all my point.

I think if they are just in the procedure and you do not understand it then you can look unprofessional, when all you really want is to be paid. But if it is procedure and industry standard it shows you don't know that and might not want to highlight that.

Plus when they want another performer they may search for one who does understand.


Danny, that wasn't what I was referrring to about upsetting them. What I was referring to was your point of clarifying payment terms. As most terms are usually 30-60-90 some will vary. To Bill's point of slow paying invoices, that happens because by slow paying AP, I improve my cash collection days and overall cash flow. Entertainers get this treatment because they don't know better and hold their grounds for payment. As such it starts to become an industry norm ala bully the little guy. Because as a larger company, they care about their profits more than yours. Also, at the job level they are more concerned with avoiding or fixing with the "hot potato" first. Employees don't want to deal with headaches, and small bills can be considered a headache, especially when all paperworks weren't done properly. They view the person in weaker position therefore they delay not out of maliciousness, but rather problem avoidance till they HaVE to deal with it.

Finally, getting paid 6 months later is a joke, unless you are getting healthcare reimbursements or subcontracted and have to wait till the primary contractor is paid.
thomasR
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If your contract states you should be paid day of show, and you made that clear to your contact, you have every right to question who you will be receiving payment from and when to expect it. On the day of show, what conversation took place about payment?

I'm not sure why they made you feel second class... Did they not tell you when to expect payment?

I've never had a problem getting paid day of show for company events from various sized companies.
Dannydoyle
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Quote:
On May 8, 2017, WDavis wrote:
Quote:
On May 8, 2017, Dannydoyle wrote:
I should clarify. I do not believe they are delaying for any reason other than procedure. It may not be intentional.

The idea that they will delay longer if you upset them is not at all my point.

I think if they are just in the procedure and you do not understand it then you can look unprofessional, when all you really want is to be paid. But if it is procedure and industry standard it shows you don't know that and might not want to highlight that.

Plus when they want another performer they may search for one who does understand.


Danny, that wasn't what I was referrring to about upsetting them. What I was referring to was your point of clarifying payment terms. As most terms are usually 30-60-90 some will vary. To Bill's point of slow paying invoices, that happens because by slow paying AP, I improve my cash collection days and overall cash flow. Entertainers get this treatment because they don't know better and hold their grounds for payment. As such it starts to become an industry norm ala bully the little guy. Because as a larger company, they care about their profits more than yours. Also, at the job level they are more concerned with avoiding or fixing with the "hot potato" first. Employees don't want to deal with headaches, and small bills can be considered a headache, especially when all paperworks weren't done properly. They view the person in weaker position therefore they delay not out of maliciousness, but rather problem avoidance till they HaVE to deal with it.

Finally, getting paid 6 months later is a joke, unless you are getting healthcare reimbursements or subcontracted and have to wait till the primary contractor is paid.


I didn't refer to your post.
Danny Doyle
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<BR>In a time of universal deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act....George Orwell
TomBoleware
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Quote:
On May 8, 2017, thomasR wrote:
If your contract states you should be paid day of show, and you made that clear to your contact, you have every right to question who you will be receiving payment from and when to expect it. On the day of show, what conversation took place about payment?

I'm not sure why they made you feel second class... Did they not tell you when to expect payment?

I've never had a problem getting paid day of show for company events from various sized companies.


I agree, and I don’t see it as the performer not being professional or him not understanding how companies operate. They both knew exactly what the agreement was to begin with. He was to be paid that day and he wasn’t. It is past due and they are dragging around with paying it.

Still, with the show being last month, my guess is he will be paid soon, if not this week.

Tom
Do What Others Do And You Will Become Average

The Daycare Magician Book
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Dannydoyle
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That lack of understanding is amazing.

The huge percentage of corporate shows I do are paid through ACH bank transfers.

Tom you are truly out of your depth here.
Danny Doyle
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<BR>In a time of universal deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act....George Orwell
TomBoleware
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Danny, what does that have to do with him having an agreement that he would be paid THAT DAY? Nothing at all.


Anyways,

Reminds me of years ago when one Saturday morning I had a man walk into my office with a gun saying ‘I come to get my money.’ I was there alone and had no idea who he was. Turns out my office manager had hired him to do some yard work about a month early and he was to be mailed a check. But for some reason he had called everyday really peeing her off and she delayed, delayed, and delayed. I knew nothing about it.

So if he doen't get it soon, a gun will get it pretty quick. I think I paid the poor man a lot extra. LOL

Tom
Do What Others Do And You Will Become Average

The Daycare Magician Book
www.amazekids.com/magic-downloads/childrens-magic-ebooks/the-daycare-magician/

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Dannydoyle
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Well most business in this century is not done with firearms.

This is why often people have deposits due at certain times so it is clear what payment terms are.

Nothing wrong with having an agreement tu be paid THAT DAY (which fir sobe reason you need to put in all caps.). But if you have such an agreement it would be smart to know industry standardpractice and figure out if that is the goal.

Sure one can also use firearms.

But since there is little you can do this time learn for the future. Make terms clear and make certain who will be paying you.
Danny Doyle
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<BR>In a time of universal deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act....George Orwell
TomBoleware
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Danny my point was, sometimes the person that writes the check doesn’t always know the details of the agreement.
Surely you knew that.


But it sounds to me like the terms was very clear in his case. She was supposed to bring the check. But hey what do I know.Smile

Tom
Do What Others Do And You Will Become Average

The Daycare Magician Book
www.amazekids.com/magic-downloads/childrens-magic-ebooks/the-daycare-magician/

Tom Boleware
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