Getting your money back
Chasing payments from hirers can be difficult, but if it affects your business bottom line, you may decide to take action. If a hirer owes you money, you have a number of options:
- choose a strategy that gets your money back but leaves the door open for future work with the hirer, such as alternative dispute resolution or a payment plan
- engage a debt recovery service to recover the debt
- engage a lawyer to write a letter of demand
- take no action and decide how to continue your business with the hirer.
Depending on how you go about recovering payments, you need to be aware that some actions may affect your business relationship with the hirer.
Consider these options before involving third parties:
- Setting up a payment plan
Discuss the outstanding debt with your hirer directly. If the hirer is unable to pay the debt within the invoice period, you can negotiate a payment plan with the hirer. This will help you maintain a business relationship with the hirer.
- Setting up your own procedure
Setting up your own debt recovery procedure can result in getting your money back at the lowest cost to you. This process should include one or two informal phone calls, followed by written advice reminding the hirer of the outstanding payment and your payment terms. A lawyer can help you set up the procedure and provide you with templates for initial reminder debt collection letters.
What to do...
- Find a debt collector by searching online or through your local directory.
- Find a lawyer by contacting the Law Society or the Law Institute in your state or territory. Search our Directory of government and business associations for details.
- Find out where to get free or low cost legal advice in your state or territory, or search the Access to Justice website.
- Find out about legal services for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders (DOC, 0.18MB) from the Attorney-General's Department.
- Find the relevant magistrates court or tribunal in your state or territory.