Any Small Business Owner will tell you that when a customer has not paid, it is one of the most stressful things to deal with. The fact is most customers will pay on time which is good news. The bad news is that it is highly likely that every Small Business owner will encounter a customer who wants to avoid paying at all.
Getting paid is vital to any business, large or small. It is essential that every Small Business Owner knows how to deal with the situation.
It is very stressful to deal with late or non-paying customers but it is important any Small Business owner sticks to their principles. They should never write off an unpaid invoice or overdue account.
There are numerous reasons for why customers can’t or won’t pay, however, any small business owner is well advised to take on board some of the advice within this article.
When a Small Business is providing goods or services to someone, it is essential they apply some basic due diligence to ensure they get paid.
With Brexit looming and on-going economic uncertainty, now is the time the vultures swoop. Goodwill does not pay Small Businesses bills.
Payment Deadlines missed
It is important to take positive action when payment deadlines have been missed.
No Small Business will lose customers because they have to pay for what they have received. We all know people in life who like to freeload their way but this should not be at a small company’s expense.
Taking a positive action will help a Small Business get paid. If polite reminders are ignored, then a more pragmatic action should be sought.
Debt Collection options
Debt Collection Agencies are now the first resort for the majority of businesses in the UK now.
Recovering unpaid debts can be a costly and stressful exercise for any business. There are also the legal compliance issues that are entwined within this too.
A Professional Debt Collection Agency can be a real asset to any Small Business providing they operate with a legitimate organisation. One with a proven track record in their respective markets.
The old stigma associated with Debt Collection has been eroded over the years. This has been largely due to regulatory requirements and the work of the Credit Services Association.
UK Debt Collection Agencies can act for both Business Debt and Personally owed debts.
The benchmark for business debt collection in the UK is Federal Management. This company has collected millions for their clients and have a long-standing reputation for being the very best in Business Debt Recovery.
For any Private Debt Collection issues, Frontline Collections come highly recommended from all professional quarters.
Both provide a one stop debt collection service and have a low fixed fee policy. This provides transparency and means there are no hidden fees or drip pricing policies.
Legal Route Options
The Legal route is often the last resort as Solicitors are viewed by most as too expensive with no guarantees.
They are, however, an effective way to deal with disputed debts where the customer is refusing to pay on the basis of a dispute.
Very often, the dispute can be spurious and needs to be resolved. If a Customer ever does dispute a debt, the Small Business owner needs to look into the validity of the dispute. If it is just a dodgy excuse then the legal route will result in a court judgement for them.
The non-paying customer will then have no excuse not to pay.
Small Businesses can also try contacting the National Mediation Helpline, which is an alternative dispute resolution service (ADR). This option can resolve payment matters before they go to court.