Notary business, like any other business, is built on the foundation of clients. Without clients, there is no revenue. However, what should you do if the client refuses to pay you for the services rendered by your notary business?
While it is not common for clients to lapse payment, you will come across debtors who will avoid you when the time arrives for clearing the dues. On the bright side, there are steps you can undertake to resolve these issues. By going through this process, you can ensure payment of dues by bad debtors.
1. Start your own collection process
You should always have track of your payment due dates for all your clients. As soon as a payment becomes due, you should initiate your collection process. Follow the following pointers for your collection process:
· Phone call: If the client has not paid the due amount within one week after the due date, make a phone call to find out the reason behind it. If the client still does not pay, send emails and calls as a reminder.
· Compromise: If the client argues about the payment and shows no intention of paying the full amount, the ideal thing to do would be to compromise. It is better to receive some payment than not getting paid at all.
· Verbal commitment: If the client makes a verbal commitment to make the payment at any point, draft a confirmation letter mentioning the same and send it to the client.
· Collection letter series: If the client is due even after 10 days from the first call, you should initiate your collection letter series. It would start with a reminder letter followed by an inquiry letter. If the payment still does not come through send an appeal letter followed by an ultimatum letter.
2. Get assistance from a professional collection agency
You can either start your own collection process or get in touch with a professional collection agency. Studies have implied that opting for a professional collection agency gives a better chance of getting payment from the client. If you hire a professional collection agency, notify your debtor about it. The news may intimidate him and push him to clear his dues.
3. Take the matter to small claims court
The small claims court has been set up for the sole purpose of resolving small monetary disputes. Some states prohibit the involvement of attorneys. The matter is usually dealt with by the two parties involved without any assistance from attorneys. The rules and regulations regarding small claims courts vary from state to state.
4. Get an attorney by your side
This might not be a viable option for everyone as hiring an attorney can be an expensive affair. Some attorneys will send a letter to your client regarding the issue for a small fee. A letter from a lawyer can persuade the client to clear the bills. If your client refuses to pay even after all this, there is nothing much you can do. The logical thing is to write off the amount as bad debt and move on.