Do You Have Clients Who Owe You Money???

new photo of meI recently had to learn a very hard lesson. For the past year, I had a client who kept lagging behind in payment. There were invoices that were as much as a year old. Some invoices got paid, others lagged on and on. I always preach to people the importance of getting a confirmation agreement for each job. I also tell everyone that prepaid legal is good to have in case you need to have a lawyer to send over a letter for non-payment of services. But what happens when the client suddenly files for bankruptcy? Yes, you heard me right, bankruptcy!

For years I worked for a company named On The Scene Productions. For the longest time I got a lot of work from this company. From time to time they would be late paying me, but they always paid me one way or another. About a year ago, the company started falling behind by six months. In the beginning, I was able to have my prepaid legal attorney send over a nasty letter to them and I got paid right away. Although, my biggest mistake was to keep working for them even after they were late paying me. At the time, I just figured I would get my money eventually and getting paid late was better than not at all. I was so wrong. Last month, I got the phone call that On The Scene Productions filed for bankruptcy. I just felt sick to my stomach. They currently owe me $3500.00! What’s worse is that when a company files for bankruptcy, the employees are the last to get paid. Their debtors get paid first and if there is anything left over then the workers get paid. Unfortunately, I’ve been through this with companies in the past and I haven’t seen a dime of that money from those companies either. The likelihood I’ll see a cent from On The Scene Productions is very very slim. That means I got up at 3am to work them on many occasions for free.

As freelancers I think we hold extremely tight to our clients. We are always afraid to rock the boat. Too afraid to lose our clients at all costs. But now I have to ask myself,” was holding on to my client worth it?” Obviously not. I should have took them to court at the first signs of lagging payments. I also should have stopped working for them at that point as well. Now, I have had to learn the lesson the hard way. Never hold on to a client too tightly. If they are not paying you on time, take them to court. And if they stop calling you for that reason then it really is for the best. You should never keep a client who doesn’t pay you on time. If they do that, its clear they don’t respect you as a professional. No one needs a client that badly. Its better to spend time finding new clients rather that chasing payment. And believe me, their are plenty of other better production companies out there. You just have to take the time to find them.

To learn more about the business of the business visit our website at

Michelle Lee
Makeup Maverick


November 6, 2009. Tags: , , , , , , . Hair & Makeup Jobs, Hair & Makeup Marketing, Networking, Working as a Hair or Makeup Artist.

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