Legal advice

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  • randommail0

  • randommail0

    where are the "fuck you, pay me" comments?

  • e-wo0

    1. Bill and collect for the remainder of project without overages
    2. Bill for overages
    3. If objections persist, send them something on legal letterhead warning of impending claims case if bill goes unpaid.
    4. If bill goes unpaid, hire a collections agency. They'll take 30ish % of what's collected, but it's worth it.

    • collection agency could collect just talking? They would have to send a convincing bloke over..yurimon
  • stoplying0

  • formed0

    Don't turn off the site. Unless you have really clear, solid legal language in your contract anyway.

    You could be sued for causing damage to their business. It could get really ugly. I've had long conversations (EXPENSIVE conversations!) with my lawyer about this and am re-writing my contract because of this.

    Doesn't matter that they owe you money, if you kill the site, or worse, put up language like "please encourage this person to pay their bills" it could cause irrevocable harm to their reputation, lost time/wages, etc. Seems silly, but when you think about it makes sense.

    At the very least, seek legal advice before doing something drastic.

    • yeah, because not getting paid doesn't harm the designer whatsoever :(monospaced
    • no harm, no lost wages or even reputation problems for a design firm, not at all :(monospaced
    • I am just talking legalities, not ethics. As always, talk to your own lawyer. This is what I was told by mine and my research confirmed it.formed
    • confirmed it from many sources. Sue them for whatever you want, but leave it up to the judge to determine damages.formed
    • I think it sucks and that's why I am rewriting my contracts to cover this.formed
    • wordmonospaced
  • randommail0

    you can't turn off the site?
    (always retain access to the site and its backups)

    • I can, just trying to avoid going down that route, plus it's been handed over to someone else now so they probably have a copy.isakosmo
  • formed0

    As everyone has already said, this will be a learning experience.

    My advice is to document everything in one clear email. Completely ignore the "got advice..." bs, that's just him talking out his ass and irrelevant.

    Keep bugging him, professionally, send invoices all the time. I've had a few clients take a year to pay, but patience and professional courtesy (even if they don't deserve it) generally are a better path that combative language, unless you are prepared to go to court, which for $1k and no clear contract/change order wouldn't be worth it, imho (even if you win, he can just not pay, then you have to go back again, etc., etc).

    Signed change orders are key, or at least a very, very clear email stating the amount and their direct approval for that fee. This sounds like you mentioned extra time, maybe extra cost, but never direct amounts approved, so he could argue that it just wasn't clear. I tell clients all the time that things are taking longer than quoted, but I don't charge them more.

  • isakosmo0

    Thanks for the advice everyone. Definitely a learning experience and should have known better than to go in without signing a contract, so I guess I know for next time. Assume the worst in people etc...

    whitewolf thanks for the write-off advice - definitely going to look into that.

  • yurimon0

    Can you in the UK send a bloke to collect for you? a guy dressed in a leather jacket, cockney accent, heard it was legal in the uk..

  • prophetone0

    interesting! did not realize this. and wolfs love assholes to boot.

  • whitewolf0

    Are you freelance? Contractor?

    "unpaid invoices" can be submitted as a write-off.

    And in some cases it raises awareness to tax authorities to look into the client's tax behavior--if they are not paying clients the full amount due, chances are they just as shady with their taxes.

    Could be a nice way to still get your $$ due in a round about way, while feeding the client to the wolves....

    • This is a belter! I am just looking to see if this is the case in the UK
    • Excellent you can in the UK. Thanks for this I had no idea this was available.
    • unpaid invoices as a write off!!! are you serious?ohhhhhsnap
    • The tax from those invoices can be claimed back. So for a cash flow perspective its goodchossy
    • Wow, that's something I didn't know either. Hopefully I'll never have the need to use that, but it's certainly good to know about.Wolfboy
  • ETM0

    But more to the original point, write off the difference and the client. I wouldn't work with him again and he can cry and complain when he needs help and you're not there for them.

  • ETM0

    This is why, in addition to an original contract, I get change of work orders done to scope changes. They add on to the project, they see the estimate for those changes and sign-off on it. They can't claim ignorance and I have their signature as legal proof of both seeing and agreeing to the additional or altered scope.

  • PonyBoy0

    Unfortunately you're kinda screwed... $1k is such an itty-bitty amount (and I'm willing to bet you probably did about $5k or more work... ask a REAL Design Co. CEO and he/she will probably tell you that) :)

    I know here in the States you can take him to small claims court as you have the email trail... and you'd more than likely win based on that info and the completed work (it's live and online... you've got proof that you've done your job). The harassing texts ect wouldn't mean shit to a judge... over here in the states you'd be told to 'suck it up' and get reprimanded for entering a deal w/only a verbal contract (as noted at the beginning of the thread).

    My advice... Learn from this one and move on, my friend. :) It's a tiny amount of money and you'll forget about this clown in time.

    • yupmoldero
    • Yup... Should have known better, definitely a learning experience.isakosmo
  • goldieboy0

    Through word of mouth, could they try to damage your reputation/business? If not, seek legal advice (not sure if citizens Advice Bureau could help/advise before you payout for actual Legal advice?). If they could, or attempt to bad name you, walk away and learn a harsh lesson from it. But, I'll ask some mates for some London Legal folk who have worked in the is area before.

  • yurimon0

    Not a lawyer but, I'd...

    however Email is proof enough,

    ... Kindly, professionally review what he said in the previous emails about costs. Kindly professionally attempt to collect via normal invoice or collection process..

    This will be important to show in court. that you attempted and exhausted all methods of legal collection prior to resorting to court.

    last resort go to court. if you are in the states just go to small claims court, Add your cost, time for court, dealing with it. bring all your emails as proof collection attempts to court.

  • pr20

    Pull the quotes where you were clear and see if you saying it clearly or just insinuation. Likewise ere-read what we said - did he agree it for certain. If he did all you have to do is be polite and send him his own emails as the proof.

    • checkyurimon
    • Thanks. This is what I've done, waiting for him to come back but preparing for worst.
  • prophetone0

    well you are going to get the why no contract jabs. but I suppose I would just calmly send him the bill with the overages noted w/ dates and approval note for each, etc.

    maybe bill the remaining to get the 1k and send another bill separately for overages? sounds like he would hold up the whole show if you send a larger bill.

    it was what was agreed to so he should have no issues at all, other than being a complete asshole apparently.

  • isakosmo

    I just finished a website for a client who has been a nightmare from the start (weird harassing texts on holiday about 'begging you to start the design work early because my business is bleeding'). It's a wordpress site and is now live.

    He ran up a bill that was 1K than the quote, and I was clear as I went along that we were adding days to the job, ensuring he was aware. He Ok'ed this in several emails.

    He is now refusing to pay the final bill (over 1k) saying it was unreasonable charges and he has 'consulted the CEO of a design company' who said the extra cost should be written off.

    Anyone know how to get on with legal advice on this sort of situation? I didn't sign a contract but have a long series of emails detailing the work and proving he was aware of the extra costs the work was incurring.

    Any advice please share, or legal resources to understand what I can do from here? Thanks