Register free!
Search
 
     

The Green Industry's Resource Center


Click for Weather
Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old 10-03-2013, 03:40 PM
MikeTA95's Avatar
MikeTA95 MikeTA95 is offline
LawnSite Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: Burlington County, NJ
Posts: 83
How would you handle this situation with an EX customer?

I have a customer that is majorly past due (from last season). I didn't continue their service in spring because of nonpayment. I've been sending past dues since last October. I recently sent them a letter saying they needed to pay up, or I was going to have to take it to the next step.

They wrote me a letter back claiming we broke their siding, and that's why they never paid us. THIS WAS NEVER BROUGHT UP TO ME UNTIL NOW, ONE YEAR LATER. They claim the damage is insignificant, so they can't find a reputable contractor to do the work replacing it. The letter said "once you find and pay a reputable contractor to repair the siding, we will pay you."

I do not like this, this is the second time in my career a non-payer claimed we damaged their house well after the bill was due in order to avoid payment. Last time I let it go, and it still bothers me every time I pass that guy's house. I don't want to let them slide, but realistically is it worth my time doing anything about this? The bill is about $500. If you do think it's worth my time fighting, what CAN I do about it?
Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old 10-03-2013, 03:44 PM
gcbailey's Avatar
gcbailey gcbailey is offline
LawnSite Bronze Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: southern WV
Posts: 1,369
for $500, I think I could have to cut my losses and let the accountant deal with it. I know a guy who is a contractor and is being held up over $8,500 on a new porch because of something similar to a siding situation... His is even on the opposite side of the house that the homeowner is claiming.

Being this long of a time frame it's hard to say that they could get any legal justification from it, but you could always turn them into a collection agency, but by the time you go through all the fees... there's your $500.
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 10-03-2013, 04:09 PM
Holland's Avatar
Holland Holland is offline
LawnSite Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2013
Location: Mississippi
Posts: 508
I'd still take them to small claims court. Or atleast threaten them with that. Just filing the claim against them ($50 fee) more than likely they will pay.
Posted via Mobile Device
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 10-03-2013, 05:02 PM
easy-lift guy's Avatar
easy-lift guy easy-lift guy is online now
Sponsor
 
Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: Venice, FL. USA
Posts: 1,576
Don't threaten to take him to court, gather your records and do it. This person is now trying to stif you in a big way.
easy-lift guy
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 10-03-2013, 05:09 PM
Holland's Avatar
Holland Holland is offline
LawnSite Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2013
Location: Mississippi
Posts: 508
Your right. Your the victim bro. Screw them!
Posted via Mobile Device
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 10-03-2013, 05:55 PM
Blade Runners's Avatar
Blade Runners Blade Runners is offline
LawnSite Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: Woodlawn, TN
Posts: 836
Don't threaten, Do it! I took a deadbeat to court over a matter unrelated to lawn care. I know I will never see money from these people but I got them out of the house and that is all that mattered. I heard every excuse in the world from these people.

Your customers probably never had any intentions of paying you and then just came up with a bogus excuse to cover themselves later.

Read this link and see if it applies to your situation... http://www.judiciary.state.nj.us/cri...s/theft011.pdf
__________________

Scag mowers
++++++++++++++++++++++++++
www.ClarksvilleLawnCare.us

"Always do your best. What you plant now, you will harvest later."
-Og Mandino
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 10-03-2013, 06:13 PM
Chilehead's Avatar
Chilehead Chilehead is offline
LawnSite Bronze Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Stockbridge, GA
Posts: 1,787
Look into the statute of limitations for collecting a past due debt in your state along with any interest you may be able to charge. Take them to small claims court.
__________________


Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication. --Leonardo da Vinci

http://integritylawnpro.com
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 10-03-2013, 06:21 PM
jsslawncare's Avatar
jsslawncare jsslawncare is offline
LawnSite Bronze Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2011
Location: North Georgia
Posts: 1,644
How would you handle this situation with an EX customer?

You took too long to take care of this.
__________________
All equipment is wore out. <- Never mind. All equipment has been repainted and with new decals. It's like I have new mower's again!
48" Ferris WB
36" Ferris WB
All Echo hand helds
<- That's how I feel at the end of the day.
Reply With Quote
  #9  
Old 10-03-2013, 07:46 PM
gcbailey's Avatar
gcbailey gcbailey is offline
LawnSite Bronze Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: southern WV
Posts: 1,369
There are some other things here that aren't known.... Is the $500 a one time charge, or is it a buildup of several weekly/bi-weekly, whatever invoices? If he would decide to go to small claims court and the homeowner decided to play ball too, their lawyer could say "well Mr. Mike knew that he hadn't been getting paid, yet continued to provide service... it's his loss for anything beyond XXX date of service because the clients were past due, yet he continued to provide service". So he might only get say $40. I have saw that happen and the judge side with the homeowners. The judge was like, if you're stupid enough to keep working and not getting paid for past invoices, that's your tough luck.

However, if it was a one time $500 and no service was provided afterwards. It could be a different story.
Reply With Quote
  #10  
Old 10-03-2013, 08:18 PM
larryinalabama larryinalabama is offline
LawnSite Fanatic
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Ragland Al
Posts: 8,344
Quote:
Originally Posted by gcbailey View Post
There are some other things here that aren't known.... Is the $500 a one time charge, or is it a buildup of several weekly/bi-weekly, whatever invoices? If he would decide to go to small claims court and the homeowner decided to play ball too, their lawyer could say "well Mr. Mike knew that he hadn't been getting paid, yet continued to provide service... it's his loss for anything beyond XXX date of service because the clients were past due, yet he continued to provide service". So he might only get say $40. I have saw that happen and the judge side with the homeowners. The judge was like, if you're stupid enough to keep working and not getting paid for past invoices, that's your tough luck.

However, if it was a one time $500 and no service was provided afterwards. It could be a different story.
Lawyers generally don't not do "small claims".

Id go ahead and sue them, they will counter sue because of the siding damage, thus proving you did the services. The argument will be over the siding damage that you dindnt cause.
Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump





Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.6
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Copyright ©1998 - 2012, LawnSite.comô - Moose River Media
All times are GMT -4. The time now is 07:27 AM.

Page generated in 0.08319 seconds with 7 queries