small claims letter example?

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by seacoastlandscape, Feb 9, 2005.

  1. seacoastlandscape

    seacoastlandscape LawnSite Member
    Posts: 103

    I have 2 customers who are past due almost 3 months on thier bills. I was wondering if anyone has a example of a letter sent to deadebat customer saying if payment wasnt received the matter would be taken to small claims court. These customers both have been sent numorous bills and I have a feeling once the word court is involved I will get my money. Just looking for some example because I have never had to do this before. :angry:
    Thanks
     
  2. Tom-N-Texas

    Tom-N-Texas LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 370

    I don't have a letter like that, but just wanted to let you know you're not alone. I have a customer that just vanished in the middle of the night. No for sale sign. No warning. No nothing. Just an empty house. Oh...and a $260 debt to me. (I've since learned that they were leasing to own.)

    It sucks...let me tell you. Amazing how many people have so few morals.
     
  3. ed2hess

    ed2hess LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 13,320

    First try a personal note included with the bill....if you have done that then draft your own letter saying if I don't hear from you by the 15th I will be taking this to small claims. We have always lost customers that we threat with small claims and we have always won in small claims. As your business grows the late payment people are the biggest problem....we now have a lawyer that handles all ours. We give the dead beats until the start of the next season and them we sent it to the lawyer. My sons handles all the billing and he tells me Quickbooks has canned letters that you send as the customer gets further and further behind. We just got the new version and he said the first result are good!!
     
  4. Mdirrigation

    Mdirrigation LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,766

    Walk up to the front door at dinner time , knock and tell them you are there to collect the money thats due you , its simple and it works.
     
  5. kalyeah

    kalyeah LawnSite Member
    Posts: 146

    also send it registered mail so they have to sign for it. That way they can't say they never received it.
     
  6. Fareway Lawncare

    Fareway Lawncare LawnSite Silver Member
    from Canada
    Posts: 2,222

    Registered Mail------>Yes

    "Dear Mr. Dips***As****

    I have made several attempts to contact you regarding this invoice (include the invoice) and have sent --- copies to your ---- Road property.

    As a policy, if invoices are four months past due I file in Small Claims Court. Please note that as standard procedure the $75 court fee and interest charges and any additional charges that may be necessary to secure payment will be included in my claim. I intend to file the week of Feb.---

    Should you wish to resolve this invoice please send a cheque or notify me at ------- that payment has been sent prior to Feb.----.

    I apologize if this has been the first you have seen of this invoice but numerous attempts have been made to make you aware of the balance owing.

    Sincerely,

    TheGuyWhosGoingToRipYourHeadoff&ShoveitDownYourAzzifYouDon'tPayUp."


    I actually enjoy it sometimes when these DickHeads don't pay because the next step is to file in Small Claims...Get a Settlement against them and then if they still don't pay...Get a court order for garnishment of wages or seizure of property or lien on house etc....
     
  7. RICHIE K

    RICHIE K LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 647

    DEAR ?,

    THIS IS YOUR FINAL REMINDER THAT YOUR ACCOUNT OF $______IS PAST DUE.IT HAS BEEN PAST DUE SINCE ____________,____. IF PAYMENT IS NOT RECEIVED BY_______,____, WE WILL HAVE NO ALTERNATIVE BUT TO TURN YOUR ACCOUNT OVER TO A ( LAWYER OR COLLECTION AGENCY ) FOR COLLECTION.


    THANK YOU FOR YOUR PROMPT ATTENTION TO THIS MATTER.


    HOPE THIS HELPS YOU!!!!!!!!!!


    RICHIE K

    www.kulakandcompany.com :blob3:
     
  8. RobertCT

    RobertCT LawnSite Member
    Posts: 32

    This is what you do:

    Obtain a Small Claims form from the clerk at the court

    Complete the form with the amount due with explaination, but Do Not file it

    Next, mail a copy of the completed Small Claims form with a demand letter stating you will file court action if not paid in full within 7 days

    Then, wait for the phone call or check ( negotiate if necessary to get paid)

    You will get a response !
     
  9. HOOLIE

    HOOLIE LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,981

    That's what I always do, works like a charm (usually). I may be mistaken, but I'm not aware of any law which requires that you send numerous "warning" letters first. Shouldn't the fact that you've been billing them for months on end with no response be warning enough?
     
  10. Fareway Lawncare

    Fareway Lawncare LawnSite Silver Member
    from Canada
    Posts: 2,222

    Collection Agencies are Useless...

    Small Claims Works like a Charm.

    I Always send 1 warning letter first.... Feb.15 I go And File for all the Deadbeats from the past season...Usually 5-10 after the Warning Letter. I Love serving these people w/the Court Documents...Most Think You're Blowing Smoke....Fortunately I have all Winter to Make their Life Hell and Follow through w/the the various court petitions.

    Nothing Gives me Greater Joy than Breaking a Deadbeat using the Law.
     

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