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Collection Challenges – Bankrupt Customers
CBS News reminds businesses that getting paid makes a sale a sale. Approaching customers correctly with the right attitude is how you get paid. All small businesses have, at one time or another, experienced collection issues. Small businesses are challenged to get paid promptly. If yours is a new business, keeping a journal of who didn’t pay and why and documenting your collection efforts will help you refine your customer service policies. With practice, you’ll learn to work with your customer and never get angry. Your goal is current receivables, but you must develop an astute disciplined process to discern sales from interest and which customers can and will pay for your services. You can’t possibly review all sales before shipping. You can refuse to sell without cash in your hand.
Your first step is to send a second invoice and give your customer a second 30 days to pay. You may get your payment with an apologetic note. If yours is a small business and you are not paid within 60 days, you can call and talk to your customer. You can offer to accept payments and add interest to the past due amount until the debt is paid in full as stated in your credit policy. Your customer is more likely to follow clearly stated credit and collections policies. You may not add interest to the balance if additional interest was not clearly stated on your invoice or in your sales contract.
An empathetic approach, friendly and understanding, is usually best when payments are past due. Can you arrange installment payments, or would the customer like to return the merchandise? Learn from experience and amend your policies to tighten your credit practices. You can require a deposit before your product is shipped. Always keep a written record of all communications with your customers.
You have a right to involve a bill collector, but action against your customer destroys your business relationship. Collection agencies will keep a fraction of the money collected or require that you pay them. Debt collection attorneys are generally better because you’re responsible for debt collection actions on your behalf.
Massachusetts Debt Collection
Our Boston, Massachusetts, debt collection law firm is not a collection agency. Our attorney can help you with local, national, and international debt collection. Our attorney offers sound business advice to help you make sound decisions. Our debt collection lawyers are paid only on a contingency fee basis, and we will work hard to collect your money with interest from your slow paying customers. We have a national network to keep track of your customer. Our Boston debt collection attorney knows when your customer’s financial situation improves. Whenever possible, you’ll recover more if our law firm gets involved. Our contingency fees are usually 30% but we do charge more for services, such as representation in bankruptcy court. Breached contracts can devastate small business owners work hard for their money. Our Boston commercial collection lawyer can help you with:
• Breached contracts
• Real estate sales and leases
• Equipment sales and leases
• Bankrupt clients, customers, consumers
• Commercial liquidations
• Civil litigation
Massachusetts Debt Collection Attorneys
If a customer suddenly stops making payments on your equipment or vehicles and you receive a notice that he has filed for bankruptcy, our Boston debt collection lawyer can help you recover payments or your assets anywhere in the United States. If your debt is a secured debt and your equipment is essential to the operation of the debtor’s business, there is a good chance that you’ll be paid. Our law firm offers uniform collection services in all 50 states saving our clients considerable time and effort. As nationwide debt collection lawyers, we can pursue your customers wherever they relocate.
If your customer filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy and your debt is not secured by collateral, your customer hopes to liquidate his nonexempt property to pay his delinquent accounts. Our Massachusetts debt collection attorney can represent you in the 341 Meeting of the Creditors in the U.S. Bankruptcy Court. Our Boston bankruptcy litigation attorney can help you attempt to recover or repossess your equipment if it is not essential to the operation of the debtor’s business. If you find that your customer falsified financial documents to obtain your equipment or vehicles or get a loan from you, the federal trustee can investigate your customer, the debtor, for fraud and refuse to liquidate your assets.
If your customer filed a Chapter 11 bankruptcy, he probably hopes to reduce his payments by increasing the duration of your sales contract or loan. Typically, the business debtor will request three or five years to repay you. Chapter 11 bankruptcy allows your customer to restructure and continue in business. In both Chapter 7 and Chapter 11 bankruptcy, debts are prioritized by the trustee and paid in order of priority. Tax debt and secured debts are paid before unsecured loans. If yours is an unsecured loan, you will be paid a percentage of the liquidated amount.
Our Massachusetts commercial collection lawyer can challenge preferential payments made up to 90 days prior to your customer’s initial bankruptcy petition and have the payments brought back into the bankruptcy estate to equitably distribute the money to you, a legitimate creditor. The trustee scrutinizes the debtor’s finances 90 days before filing for bankruptcy. Our Massachusetts debt collection attorney can object to fraudulent transfers, such as property transferred to family members to hide assets from the court to bring the asset and its value back into your customer’s bankruptcy estate.
Reaffirmation of Debts
Our Boston commercial collection attorney can help you reaffirm the terms of your contract if the debtor made payments while in bankruptcy and wants to keep making installment payments to keep using your secured property. The bankruptcy trustee reaffirms the terms of your loan, contract, or lease with the debtor. Our attorney can help you enforce your lien in a state court judgment or repossession if the debtor misses a payment after most of his debts are discharged in the U.S. Bankruptcy Court.
Goldberg and Oriel
Call today for a free consultation in our conveniently located Boston, Massachusetts, debt collection law office. Our Massachusetts commercial collection lawyer can put fifty years of combined experience in a big city law firm to work for you when he or she collects on your debts. We verify every debt we collect, and we will be happy to answer your questions. Our attorney can work with you to efficiently collect the maximum allowable payments with interest on your delinquent accounts.