Freelance Software Consultant

Our client, a Peterborough based self-employed branding consultant, was contracted by a large West Country-based food manufacturer and supplier to several big supermarkets to assist with the launch of a new vegan product range.

The initial consultation went well with the scope of the works being agreed upon and a contract being signed by both parties. Our client worked diligently and completed the project ahead of time and within budget. They received a series of plaudits on the work completed. In accordance with the contract, our client issued their invoice of £8,615.22 inclusive of expenses and on the 7-day payment terms agreed in the contract. The invoice was issued by email as requested to the accounts payable email address complete with the correct purchase order number and accompanied by the expenses receipts.

What followed was a typical example of how difficult it can be for a freelancer to obtain payment from a large company. Each time our client chased for payment, they were transferred from one person or department to another person or department, who all shared a complete disregard for our client’s situation. The result was always the same, one excuse after the other. At first, our client was repeatedly requested to again send a copy of the invoice. Then our client was repeatedly informed that the invoice was to be included in the next payment run on Friday. Finally, the excuses ran out and our client was repeatedly advised that someone would call them back, they never did.

By the time the invoice was overdue by 90 days, our client’s patience had been exhausted, and Advocate Debt Recovery was instructed to recoveruiuy payment of the debt. The instruction was received before our cut-off time of 14.00, and we commenced action the same day, issuing a Notice of Court Proceedings, including the additional late payment charges that make up our fee. The Notice was issued to the company’s registered address, that of the company’s auditors, so a copy of the Notice was also sent to the company’s trading address.

3-day payment of an invoice issued three months earlier

On day 2 of our action, copies of the Notice were emailed to several email addresses to which our client had been requested to send a copy of the invoice to during their attempts to obtain payment. With four email read receipts, we were confident that someone would take charge of the situation and that a response would be forthcoming. On the morning of day 3 of our action and before we had even commenced telephone contact with the debtor, full payment, including our charges, was received to our bank account.

As is our standard procedure, 100% of the principal invoice sum, £8,615.22, was transferred to our client the same day via a faster payment. It was actually 25 minutes after receiving the payment!

Our client received a completely free of charge debt collection service, which resulted in their ongoing frustration being resolved in 3 days. They were delighted with the service provided by Advocate Debt Recovery and the result we achieved.

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