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Thread: Client avoid payment after 4 months

  1. #1
    Member uboat51's Avatar
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    Default Client avoid payment after 4 months

    Hi guys, I am writing to see if I can get any advice from the peeps here.

    Last year November I did a food n interior photography for one of the restaurant in RWS, the shoot went well and the clients seems happy.
    The clients owner are from HK, so after the shoot , the boss n the person I liaise with went back to HK

    I Hv dealt with the person in charge previous when she was in her ex company, so I trusted her n send her the images after I invoice them. How we've since then they Hv been avoiding replying my email n text.

    I tried to call n text them but only get procrastination replies saying that the lady boss dislike the color. Which I re wait for them. That was before CNY. N the person in charge told me that she will get back to me after CNY. Till now no news of payment still.

    Anyone has any advice on this or should I decide that this a bad debt now .

    I think I made a mistake in trusting the person I liaise with.
    Appreciate any helpful advice.
    "... Simplicity is in the pictures ... Diversity are in their stories ... "

  2. #2

    Default Re: Client avoid payment after 4 months

    Bro, I try to read your message but its not very clear and can't understand your short forms.

    Basically if you dont have proper assignment contract, you're Fked. Learn the lesson and move on.

    Remember you must have a clause to protect you and your work from differences in aesthetic opinion. Otherwise with any good work you deliver, anyone can just say 'not nice, I not paying.' 'color too yellow' you adjust back, 'color too blue' you adjust, 'color looks dead' and they play you round and round. A good contract will cover every change cost them money.

    Some photographers very scared to pull out a contract, but they fail to see that it is being professional doing so, set the tone right from the start and people will treat you seriously. They think that it will scare away the client, but it is actually not 'scaring away clients' it is in reality; filtering out the wrong clients.

    Can you go to a chef, ordered food, and then say "Not nice one, I not paying"

    Even if they didn't use the photos, most pro photographer will also cover a 50% kill fee in the contract. Some go by day rates and the licensing rates for image usage.

    These type of threads, over the years always have on clubsnap.
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  3. #3
    Member uboat51's Avatar
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    Default Re: Client avoid payment after 4 months

    have anyone attempt to retrieve their bad debt before? or do we just resign ourselves quietly ?
    or is it that when clients don't pay then we just don't do anything about it?

    Or is it without contract, that's the end of the debt for us?
    What actions have you guys taken? if any?
    "... Simplicity is in the pictures ... Diversity are in their stories ... "

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Client avoid payment after 4 months

    If you dont have a contract, how will you make a case for your claims?

    If you dont use contracts, then at least use a corporate purchase order from the client so that you can deliver and invoice.

    If you have a contract, then the question will be if the value is more than the legal costs.

    You could contact Consumer Association for advice, and learn from past experience.

    If you make a living taking corporate assignments, dont see how you can survive without a proper contract.

  5. #5
    Moderator catchlights's Avatar
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    Default Re: Client avoid payment after 4 months

    if you have an invoice, go to small claim tribunal.

    usually it will work out.


    but you better explain clearly, if you write the same way as what you have posted, might get throw out.
    Last edited by catchlights; 11th March 2016 at 04:50 PM.
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  6. #6

    Default Re: Client avoid payment after 4 months

    Benjamin, last time small claims court helps out. Now its all about mediation which mean you discount some, client will pay some (from I no pay you fxxxxxxx spiders). How much ahhh that one you two decide, small claims courts not going to decided anything. In the end if client still say no - I think you are screwed. Small claims court does not have the power to compel payment even in past if it makes judgement and client does not pay you need to enforce by getting bailiff to to stick paper at place of business ($200 per hour) if they scared then you see payment if not you lauan luan wait.
    Moral of story, its collect before doing if can, can not collect when handling of files, waiting to collect after handing over is like any service provider doing first then expecting payment without an enforcement arm. Hmmm I suppose you could say that never happens in Geylang, never pay after getting serviced, cause you be given a house massage by some very upset people.
    Last edited by ellery; 12th March 2016 at 04:57 PM.

  7. #7

    Default Re: Client avoid payment after 4 months

    No contract you can say bye bye.

    Gosh, people have got to understand how important a contract is. It's not just a small stack of papers that people don't usually read through. It protects your business and yourself, EVEN as a freelancer.
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  8. #8

    Default Re: Client avoid payment after 4 months

    An officially endorsed quotation, or a purchase order from the client, are also legally valid forms of contracts. Proper documentation (POs, DOs, invoices) can help you get legal settlement. But as pointed out earlier, Small Claims Tribunal doesn't have much teeth.

    If you have any of these, I hope they are with the local company (not the HK people), cause AFAIK taking legal action against a foreign entity is difficult and expensive.

  9. #9

    Default Re: Client avoid payment after 4 months

    Dude let get this straight - a contract or a paper trail is great. But when people do not want to pay you well its like toilet paper that the news from real life not regurgitating stuff you read on the internet. A skill that few every talk about (okay no one will teach you this) is how to ensure you get paid and how to get paid after the client starts to make signs they are not going to pay on time, these are what you call business skills which a business owner will happily not teach a mere production worker aka the photographer who works in his company. You think all those wonderful people teaching you how to run your own photo biz teach you all you need to know - please wake up. Courses have now become the staple income for many photographers who find teaching a wonderful income source - the students pay in advance, you spew what ever you want - remember its never 1 course teach all there is alway intermediate and advance and new new techniques. No bad debts no slow to pay clients. No need to worry too much about not happy students if your showmanship is good and you can give answers that seem to work (at least some times in real life or not).

  10. #10

    Default Re: Client avoid payment after 4 months

    Quote Originally Posted by ellery View Post
    A skill that few every talk about (okay no one will teach you this) is how to ensure you get paid and how to get paid after the client starts to make signs they are not going to pay on time, these are what you call business skills which a business owner will happily not teach a mere production worker aka the photographer who works in his company. You think all those wonderful people teaching you how to run your own photo biz teach you all you need to know - please wake up.
    Great point. When one has to fall back onto enforcing the contract to get paid, things already turned ugly.

    Many of the soft skills of business come from individual personality, experience and very often, being a good communicator or simply being likeable. Photography skills accounts for little when all things are considered.
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  11. #11
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    Default Re: Client avoid payment after 4 months

    Dude, do you have any email instruction from them? (Make sure you fees is agreed.) If yes, BINGO!
    Go to small claim court and claim against them.

  12. #12

    Default Re: Client avoid payment after 4 months

    Bro not that I am saying any negative to you. Have you tried the going the Small Claims Court route before. If not lets not bring an organization that is chasing up to the level of use that CASE has scaled up to. He needs to go negotiate with his client, talk to his contact there. figure out what is wrong either at his end or theirs. I doubt if we have all the facts here. No one asking for advice on these sort of matters will have tell where they cocked up in the story; it will always be its their fault now tell me how to get my money. Some time I am tempted to "advise" use WeCollectforAhLong to help them collect...... since they need some way to help them see the light. Success rate is low but they sure collect their service fee fast, back end is also pretty CB when they tell you its 25 cent to a dollar to them for what ever they collect on top of the service fee. That should take your mind of non paying clients.

  13. #13

    Default Re: Client avoid payment after 4 months

    normally in my line which isn't photography related, i would email the person i am dealing with and in the email, i would stated the condition/agreement.. if he/she replied in the email or accepts it, i now have a black and white which i can use should anything go wrong..

    if however, there are clients that really dont bother the agreement, i just take it as a bad deal and use the work that i have done for them for my personal use/portfolio (3d architectural renderings).

  14. #14
    Moderator Octarine's Avatar
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by bundleofjoy View Post
    I have a same problem with my a client for newborn photoshoot
    Please do not crush into other people's threads.
    1) Read existing threads and think about what advice is already given.
    2) If you think your case is different / unique then prepare a proper write up.
    EOS

  15. #15
    Senior Member G-man's Avatar
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by naynoy View Post
    normally in my line which isn't photography related, i would email the person i am dealing with and in the email, i would stated the condition/agreement.. if he/she replied in the email or accepts it, i now have a black and white which i can use should anything go wrong.. if however, there are clients that really dont bother the agreement, i just take it as a bad deal and use the work that i have done for them for my personal use/portfolio (3d architectural renderings).
    Yes that's precisely what I do for my clients too.

  16. #16
    Senior Member Nikonzen's Avatar
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    Default Re: Client avoid payment after 4 months

    I'm more cynical...I would set them up...call and offer them another shoot to revamp look of things...this time get money before handing over stick...in SG always use the memory stick for they were invented there...and charge them triple to make up for first shoot and give room for negotiation. It is a win win situation and everyone is very happy!

    It is business pal. Believe that you are a winner and you will win.
    Last edited by Nikonzen; 1st April 2016 at 09:11 AM.
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  17. #17

    Default Re: Client avoid payment after 4 months

    If client dislike the colors, did you find out what is wrong with it and make an effort to change it? Colors can be quite sensitive if seen on different computer screen. 2nd, did your client sign a quotation/contract, with your t&c mentioned? If non, don't lose sleep over this anymore since is long due. Sorry to say is a painful lesson learn for your learning curve. Next time for your overseas client, collect 50% upfront payment before the job start.

  18. #18
    Moderator catchlights's Avatar
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    Default Re: Client avoid payment after 4 months

    Quote Originally Posted by ellery View Post
    Benjamin, last time small claims court helps out. Now its all about mediation which mean you discount some, client will pay some (from I no pay you fxxxxxxx spiders). How much ahhh that one you two decide, small claims courts not going to decided anything. In the end if client still say no - I think you are screwed. Small claims court does not have the power to compel payment even in past if it makes judgement and client does not pay you need to enforce by getting bailiff to to stick paper at place of business ($200 per hour) if they scared then you see payment if not you lauan luan wait.
    Moral of story, its collect before doing if can, can not collect when handling of files, waiting to collect after handing over is like any service provider doing first then expecting payment without an enforcement arm. Hmmm I suppose you could say that never happens in Geylang, never pay after getting serviced, cause you be given a house massage by some very upset people.
    Ok, not aware of the new changes, will take note on this.

    thanks for the highlight.
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  19. #19
    Moderator catchlights's Avatar
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    Default Re: Client avoid payment after 4 months

    There is no further detail given, no clarification, not update from TS, after he posted the initial post 3 weeks ago.

    hope this is not another "fire-and-forget" thread.

    anyway, advices already given. the rest is up to him.


    thread closed.
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