1. Negotiations with the service provider/principal
First, you should talk to the service provider/principal and remind them about the overdue payment. It happens that the service provider/principal doesn’t receive the bill. It’s best to make sure what is the reason for the non-payment. If it turns out that the service will still not be paid solely because the service provider/principal is dishonest, you should go on with an official procedure, announcing that you won’t hesitate to take more radical steps.
2. Pre-trial request for payment
The official procedure should start with a pre-trial payment request to the service provider/principal. A pre-trial request for payment is an official letter in which we inform the service provider/principal of their obligation to pay the due money and set a deadline for them to repay the debt.
How to prepare a pre-trial request for payment?
Preparing a pre-trial request for payment is easy, and anyone can handle it, even without a lawyer. There are no formal requirements for a payment request, but it is worth ensuring that the letter contains such elements as:
- date and place of writing the letter,
- data (of service providers/principals),
- data (service recipients),
- the legal relationship from which the obligation to pay comes (service, subject of the contract),
- the amount of due payment,
- the date on which we oblige the service provider/principal to make the final payment (usually within 7 or 14 days),
- the bank account number to which the service provider/principal should pay,
- your signature
It is worth adding that failure to pay on time will result in a court case, which will charge the service provider/client with the costs of the process.
In addition, you have the right to demand additional interest for late payment from the service provider/principal. If the payment date was clearly indicated, e.g. in the invoice, then the interest should be calculated from the day following the payment due date. However, if the deadline has not been specified precisely, we charge interest from the payment deadline indicated in the request.
A pre-trial request for payment is best sent by registered mail with an acknowledgement of receipt. Thanks to this, we will be sure when the service provider/principal received the letter and how to count the payment date. In addition, confirmation of receipt of a payment request may be helpful as evidence in possible court proceedings.
3. Legal case
If the service provider/principal still does not want to pay the money for the services – the only thing left is to proceed with a legal case. Preparing a lawsuit requires compliance with many formal conditions and payment of an appropriate court fee, which we determine and pay ourselves – before initiating the proceedings. If we bring an action against the service provider/principal, we might find a lawyer’s help valuable because even a minor error may result in rejecting or dismissing our request.