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Notice of late payment
Thread poster: Daria Hussels

Daria Hussels  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 17:00
English to German
TOPIC STARTER
Fishy May 21, 2016

Thanks everybody. I am receiving a large variety of opinions here, which basically reflect all the doubts and mixed feelings I am having myself. I have decided to politely tell this agency excactly what, among others, Merab and Dan have suggested and stop working for them. I will keep this post updated and, if the agency does not pay me after their suggested extension, I will reveal their identity on all channels available.



[Edited at 2016-05-21 15:52 GMT]


 

Daria Hussels  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 17:00
English to German
TOPIC STARTER
Fishy? May 21, 2016

Dan Lucas wrote: That is a very polished email. Are these guys native speakers of English? Even if they are native speakers, for a supposedly ad hoc email describing a supposedly unexpected problem it's very well written.


No, they are not, and I am confronted with varying proficiency levels in my dealings with them. Some of their employees admittedly have a very good command of English.


Dan Lucas wrote: The point about the client being an SOE is ludicrous. It is hard to imagine they did not understand how SOEs work before they took the job and before they commissioned you to do the translation. It's not as if state-owned enterprises are unusual in that country, right?


I agree. And your last point is also spot on.

However, one thing I have now found out is that some of the other translators working on this project have delivered extraordinarily bad work (I have seen some of it) and the agency had difficulties in backtracing who did what (rolling eyes here...).


 

Thayenga  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 18:00
Member (2009)
English to German
+ ...
Ehm? May 21, 2016

Daria Hussels wrote:

Thanks everybody for your detailed input. It helps a lot to see all the different perspectives! Well, I have just received an email asking me to do more work on the project in question.


Pardon me if their request makes me chuckle, and simultaneously raises a red flag.

Why would you invest more of your valuable time working on a project when they seem to be unable (or unwilling?) to pay you for the work you already did for them and on the same project?

You could, of course, agree to invest more of your time and work in this project, provided they pay you for the work already completed, and also deliver a credible statement that payment for the second part of this project will be made in a timely manner.

[Edited at 2016-05-21 16:19 GMT]


 

Philippe Etienne  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 18:00
Member
English to French
The core of the problem May 23, 2016

Daria Hussels wrote:
However, one thing I have now found out is that some of the other translators working on this project have delivered extraordinarily bad work (I have seen some of it) and the agency had difficulties in backtracing who did what (rolling eyes here...).

The end-customer doesn't care about who did what and won't pay until the bad parts are fixed.
Nobody likes losing money, but it's the agency's business to sort out the mess they put themselves in. And it will be difficult, because bad translators usually don't take responsibility for their work, can't/won't improve their piece or simply vanish into thin air.

I think you need to explain your situation as politely and honestly as they explained theirs and have them admit that you must get paid by the agreed terms, and that you cannot risk to offer them more credit on that particular project, which may cost the agency more than it earned from it.

Philippe


 

Edward Vreeburg  Identity Verified
Netherlands
Local time: 18:00
Member (2008)
English to Dutch
+ ...
pull the plug and nail them to the wall May 23, 2016

if they are late in payment and they have spend an enourmous amount of time creating this letter as an anonymous matter-of-factly excuse for not being able to pay ( no reserves, no creditcard, no loan from the bank???) they are in some deep water...

Especially thanking you for your top quality work and asking you to do some more to safe them is a specific way of bad payers to maybe get some more work out of you for free...

the only way is to stop working, make them p
... See more
if they are late in payment and they have spend an enourmous amount of time creating this letter as an anonymous matter-of-factly excuse for not being able to pay ( no reserves, no creditcard, no loan from the bank???) they are in some deep water...

Especially thanking you for your top quality work and asking you to do some more to safe them is a specific way of bad payers to maybe get some more work out of you for free...

the only way is to stop working, make them pay what they owe you, and if not you can start sending out evaluations on the blue board and other payment sites.... this will make it very hard for them to find some more good faith translators who work for them for free...

On the other hand ( and if this is really a lot of money) you can ask them to join this client during their next meeting (*as the external consultant specialised hire to get this project back on track) - and get paid whatever they charge (which should get you double of what you get now) and see what is really going on...(if to them you are the saving angel they claim you are) ... But I have serious doubts this is where they want to go...


---
Ed
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Gabriele Demuth  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 17:00
English to German
Save their bacon? May 23, 2016

Philippe Etienne wrote:

Daria Hussels wrote:
However, one thing I have now found out is that some of the other translators working on this project have delivered extraordinarily bad work (I have seen some of it) and the agency had difficulties in backtracing who did what (rolling eyes here...).

The end-customer doesn't care about who did what and won't pay until the bad parts are fixed.
Nobody likes losing money, but it's the agency's business to sort out the mess they put themselves in. And it will be difficult, because bad translators usually don't take responsibility for their work, can't/won't improve their piece or simply vanish into thin air.

I think you need to explain your situation as politely and honestly as they explained theirs and have them admit that you must get paid by the agreed terms, and that you cannot risk to offer them more credit on that particular project, which may cost the agency more than it earned from it.

Philippe


If it is true and you are one of the translators who delivered good work then they will want to keep you. So in order to safe their own bacon, it would be in their interest to keep you, which, I assume means to pay you. I would very much want to help them out and therefore I would even accept PayPal (takes five minutes) and you could immediately start the new project?


 

Mervyn Henderson  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 18:00
Member
Spanish to English
+ ...
Maybe trying to keep her ... May 23, 2016

...on board until the big project is finished? Daria doesn't actually specify whether there's a lot more of the same job piling up in her in-tray, unless that's what she means by the second invoice that's on the way.

I feel they've realised there's a lot of cruddy, shoddy work coming in from others and they have to keep the best workers on the job through shakey, flakey promises, for the time being at least. Incidentally, I don't know how they can refer to her as a "trusted vendor"
... See more
...on board until the big project is finished? Daria doesn't actually specify whether there's a lot more of the same job piling up in her in-tray, unless that's what she means by the second invoice that's on the way.

I feel they've realised there's a lot of cruddy, shoddy work coming in from others and they have to keep the best workers on the job through shakey, flakey promises, for the time being at least. Incidentally, I don't know how they can refer to her as a "trusted vendor" after only a few weeks, but then, as Dan says, maybe they always use the same template, and forgot to use another expression for a new arrival. By the way, that e-mail is acceptable, but hardly "polished" - take another look ...

So the point made that at least they were gracious and honest enough to write to her to explain themselves, instead of just using the stony-silence approach or the well-worn "our accountant's on holiday" ploy, would be largely irrelevant if they simply reckon Daria needs a bit of lathering to keep her on side. They keep going on about "finalising" the project. She might find that when the panic's all over and everything has been delivered OK to the end customer, that stony silence would indeed follow.

Polite but firm, making it clear there's no more translation output meanwhile - I think that's the way to go. Might have to get nasty if that doesn't produce any hard dosh.


Mervyn
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Gabriele Demuth  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 17:00
English to German
Yes, they did ask her to do more work May 23, 2016

Mervyn Henderson wrote:

...on board until the big project is finished? Daria doesn't actually specify whether there's a lot more of the same job piling up in her in-tray, unless that's what she means by the second invoice that's on the way.

Mervyn


"Thanks everybody for your detailed input. It helps a lot to see all the different perspectives! Well, I have just received an email asking me to do more work on the project in question."

But they need to pay their invoices.


 

Mervyn Henderson  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 18:00
Member
Spanish to English
+ ...
Oops - May 23, 2016

- so she was asked to do more certain work for uncertain payment. Missed that one further down, sorry.

 

Phoenix III  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 12:00
Member (2013)
Spanish to English
+ ...
Follow your instinct. May 23, 2016

[quote]Daria Hussels wrote:

Well, I have just received an email asking me to do more work on the project in question.

What also strikes me is that they always have REALLY tight deadlines and I am coming to think that they might want their vendors to get as much as possible done before their invoices are due and difficulties become apparent? Sorry, maybe I am just becoming paranoid now."









Sometimes we ignore the warning signs and the red flags because we want to believe.

I am speaking with a new potential customer who is telling me that I would be paid when they get paid. My answer is firm. It is their client's responsibility to pay them on time and it is their responsibility to have the sufficient financial resources to be in business. I'm not a banker. My responsibility is to do my job to the best of my knowledge efficiently and on time. I charge a late fee but the late fee is supposed to be an incentive to pay on time and not a means to make a promise that will never be fulfilled. As in, "I'll agree to pay the interest but I have no intention of paying anyway".

If the client is not paying on time and having issues. Stop! Don't fall in the trap! Business is business.


 

Anne Pinaglia
Netherlands
Local time: 18:00
Italian to English
+ ...
Try to work with the agency May 24, 2016

I really appreciate this email, regardless of the fact that this agency has clearly mismanaged its finances. They're not telling you that they will pay late, but asking you if it's okay if they do.

If you want to keep this agency as a customer (of course you do!) maybe you can meet half way.

"We contracted for $xxxx and I create my budget of income based on payment due dates, since I have bills to pay. That said, I sympathize with the situation - could we arrange half
... See more
I really appreciate this email, regardless of the fact that this agency has clearly mismanaged its finances. They're not telling you that they will pay late, but asking you if it's okay if they do.

If you want to keep this agency as a customer (of course you do!) maybe you can meet half way.

"We contracted for $xxxx and I create my budget of income based on payment due dates, since I have bills to pay. That said, I sympathize with the situation - could we arrange half of the payment by [date] and the other half at 60 days?"
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Daria Hussels  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 17:00
English to German
TOPIC STARTER
Not paid Jul 2, 2016

Hello everybody,

The extension for the first invoice of two is over and the agency still hasn't paid. I have now issued one severe warning, and if I won't have received a reply on Monday, I will reveal their identity on all available channels and take legal action, which is apparently possible even in their country. Thank you all for your support.

[Edited at 2016-07-02 16:13 GMT]


 

Daria Hussels  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 17:00
English to German
TOPIC STARTER
Received partial payment Aug 18, 2016

Hello again,

Just to keep all the people who have kindly offered their advice updated: I received a partial payment with considerable delay. The angency seemed cooperative at first but now stopped responding to my emails altogether. Blueboard entry has been made. Considering legal action.


 

Mohd Hamzah  Identity Verified
Malaysia
Local time: 01:00
Member
English to Malay
+ ...
All the best Aug 18, 2016

Daria, I wish you all the best! We all support you.

 

Daria Hussels  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 17:00
English to German
TOPIC STARTER
Thank you Aug 19, 2016

Mohd Hamzah wrote:

Daria, I wish you all the best! We all support you.


Thank you so much


 
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