Clients paying late

Newbie
Newbie Registered Posts: 229 ? ? ?
I have two clients who consistenly pay me late but one is getting worse, fees o/s since April making occasional token payments, im not sure if I would be better off disengaging or insisting on money up front, I have tried getting paid up front before with him and he says he cant afford it. Any recommendations from successful practice owners

Comments

  • T.C.
    T.C. Registered, Tutor Posts: 1,448
    Some accountants take monthly payments through the year to spread the cost for the client. Personally, I just ask for payment before the Tax Return is submitted - that usually works because they don't want to have to pay a penalty. Persistent late payers get charged more next time!!
  • burg
    burg Moderator, FMAAT, AAT Licensed Accountant Posts: 1,441
    I try to get most new clients on monthly direct debit. Or where they are not then ament is required before we file to hmrc. I also have a virtual terminal for card payments which helps with those who are problem payers. Other than that it's 50% up front.
    Just think on the basis the money is only good if you get to see it otherwise the only winner is them. Ask they get up to date or you stop work?!
    Regards,

    Burg
  • jamesm96
    jamesm96 Registered Posts: 523
    Burg's completely right - if they're not paying you and the things you've tried to do to fix the problem haven't worked then you should have no qualms about ceasing to act, and you exercise a lien over his records and refuse to give professional clearance to another accountant until fees are up-to-date.

    In terms of trying to get your money, I'd recommend writing to him to ask that he make a proposal with you as to how he intends to bring his account with you up to date. If / when he's up-to-date I'd also insist on monthly payments (ideally starting at least six months before you'll actually do the work) otherwise, again, cease to act. I know he's already said he can't afford to do that but, if he can't afford to, that's his problem; you have no obligation to act for someone who's basically stated that he won't be paying you!

    We're hard working people who studied hard to earn our qualification. We bring value to people's businesses by either saving tax or, at the very least, reducing their hassle / stress. We have no reason to put up with clients who seem to think it's okay if they break their agreement with us and not pay us for our services.
  • Newbie
    Newbie Registered Posts: 229 ? ? ?
    thank you all for your comments totally agree, almost all pay monthly now so I know what to say to this last troublesome chap thanks
  • PGM
    PGM Registered Posts: 1,954
    jamesm96 wrote: »
    Burg's completely right - if they're not paying you and the things you've tried to do to fix the problem haven't worked then you should have no qualms about ceasing to act, and you exercise a lien over his records and refuse to give professional clearance to another accountant until fees are up-to-date.

    Bad when so much of your time is taken up chasing debts instead of earning money. I know a few small business that are now brutal about getting cash up front. As much to avoid the stree and unpleasantness of chasing money.
  • T.C.
    T.C. Registered, Tutor Posts: 1,448
    Just one positive note - 99.9% of my clients pay on time! :001_smile:
  • PGM
    PGM Registered Posts: 1,954
    T.C. wrote: »
    Just one positive note - 99.9% of my clients pay on time! :001_smile:

    since the 0.1% of your clients lost a few fingers in an unfortunate stapling accident, you've had no problems :D
  • Monsoon
    Monsoon FMAAT, AAT Licensed Accountant Posts: 4,071 ? ? ?
    Newbie wrote: »
    I have tried getting paid up front before with him and he says he cant afford it.

    Says it all, really!

    If he can't afford it up front, he can't afford it on time either.

    Good luck disengaging ;-)

    Ian - what virtual terminal do you use?
  • Gem7321
    Gem7321 MAAT, AAT Licensed Accountant Posts: 1,438
    Ian I'm also interested in the virtual terminal - can I ask which you use?
  • burg
    burg Moderator, FMAAT, AAT Licensed Accountant Posts: 1,441
    Apologies for not replying before but I have been in Spain for the last 3 weeks so hadn't been monitoring the forums!!!

    I use the virtual terminal from card save. They advertise a package with a monthly fee of around £20 which gives you around 200 transactions. However if you speak with them then you can get a PAYG agreement with no monthly fee. I then pay around 40p per debit card and 2%ish plus 20p for credit cards.

    Money is usually in your account within 3 working days. It does take some setting up though, it took around 4 weeks for mine to get sorted.
    Regards,

    Burg
  • Monsoon
    Monsoon FMAAT, AAT Licensed Accountant Posts: 4,071 ? ? ?
    Ian - hope you had a lovely holiday!!

    That sounds really good. I might have to go for that! Thank you :D
Privacy Policy