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Getting *&#$ing paid - again


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#1 Phil Rhodes

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Posted 24 November 2012 - 05:47 AM

So, am I the only person who's finding it more difficult than ever to get paid right now?

I'm currently owed about a quarter of a year's wages by various clients, several of whom are late payers according to preagreed terms, and several more of whom are days from becoming late.

I hasten to add that I've been able to plan things out such that I'm unlikely to face genuine hardship, but I know this must be happening to other people as well. Some of the outfits that owe me money are very big global brands who very certainly have the ability to pay and I find their delinquency particularly trying, particularly when they wheel out some of the oldest excuses in the "reasons they have for not paying you" thread that we all contributed to some time ago.

In the end I will probably be paid by all these people, but in a couple of cases it's likely to take a solicitor's letter or one from the union, and that's not how things are supposed to be.

Am I alone in this situation?

P
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#2 Micah Van Hove

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Posted 24 November 2012 - 02:35 PM

You're not alone. It's a warzone out there. I find it increasingly appalling that people have to bring their personal life into the business agreements they've made to fend you off. Like we don't all have problems to deal with. It shouldn't happen.

I feel your pain.
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#3 Stephen Murphy

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Posted 24 November 2012 - 02:51 PM

You're not alone Phil - my agent has had to chase quite a few of my clients this year for late payments.
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#4 Phil Rhodes

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Posted 24 November 2012 - 07:07 PM

This is of course part of the point of agents.

I have to do it personally, and of course I end up looking like the bad guy.
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#5 Freya Black

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Posted 26 November 2012 - 10:26 AM

This is of course part of the point of agents.


It's a sad state of affairs when you have to pay someone to deal with people being idiots.
It's a sad state of a world we live in tho!

I have to do it personally, and of course I end up looking like the bad guy.


You are obviously not the bad guy for wanting to be paid for work you have done and have agreed payment for!
I guess you mean if you end up loosing your temper with them?

Believe it or not, even I'm having trouble with this kind of situation! A short while ago I worked half a day in a trendy new bar in shoreditch doing work that basically amounted to flipping pancakes or similar. (see that university education really was all worthwhile!) I'm still chasing after the money weeks later even tho it is a really pathetically tiny amount and despite the fact that there was certainly no disagreement about my having been useful and having done a good job.

Theres something especially heartbreaking about having to chase up such pathetic amounts again and again. I'm really hoping it will come right down the line but it's not what I need at the moment. I'm going to be spending some of Christmas cleaning up rabbit poop, and I know at this point that that will be a far better experience because the rabbits are very cute. I WILL get paid no problem, in fact I will get thanks for my help, and will be treated nicely and with respect.

It's always really horrible when people go back on their agreements or even if you have to run after people to get them to do what was agreed as the basics.

I'm actually glad you posted this Phil as it makes me feel not so alone in this stuff.
In some ways with mega huge companies it can be more understandable as my inside knowledge tells me that a lot of these kind of companies are only a few cheques away from bankruptcy! Having said that, I know you used to do a lot of work for Sky who really aren't that near the edge at all.

These are strange times to be fair too.

love

Freya
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#6 Phil Rhodes

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Posted 10 December 2012 - 02:10 PM

I hasten to add Sky are always an excellent client, in case anyone gets the wrong idea!
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#7 Freya Black

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Posted 10 December 2012 - 03:03 PM

I hasten to add Sky are always an excellent client, in case anyone gets the wrong idea!


That would fit in with what I was suggesting then, that a lot of large companies are closer to the edge than you might imagine.
They can keep going for ages tho in spite of their huge debts and/or losses. (Sky are very successful and aren't burdened by debt so perhaps that's why they pay on time!)

Good news! I did get paid for the work I did in the end. I had a funny day where everything went completely right for me all day! Lets hope this is the beginning of a big new trend! :)

love

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#8 Stephen Williams

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Posted 10 December 2012 - 03:05 PM

Last year I think I was owed 25% of my yearly earnings most of the time. This year has been better, almost everything has been paid on time, no idea why.......It probably won't ever happen again either!
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#9 Matthew W. Phillips

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Posted 10 December 2012 - 06:15 PM

This seems so strange to me. I couldnt imagine not paying people who I previously said I would pay. I mean, when you see them, do you just act like nothing happened...be all friendly like you paid them knowing that you havent? One has to wonder if your services were ever in the budget to begin with or if they conned you from the get go?
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#10 Paul Bartok

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Posted 10 December 2012 - 09:02 PM

This is terrible, I just did a music video for some ppl that seemed really nice. They wanted me todo the editing as well which I really dislike but I did it any way I was told upon a set amount of money. They didn't pay me they also tried to claim that a injury waiver was proof that they owned copyright on the footage me and my crew shot, and try to steal the footage right under us, as well as we werent allowed to show ppl our own work. What the hells wrong with ppl?
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#11 Chris Millar

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Posted 10 December 2012 - 09:42 PM

Strange days...

Last week I was sent my flight details and accom info and a request that I send my invoice ahead of the work so they could get it under way.

Paid today.

I start work on Sunday
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#12 Matthew W. Phillips

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Posted 10 December 2012 - 10:50 PM

Dont think I would ever pay anyone before the work is done either. Its tricky business, it is. I hope the business doesnt become like a den of thieves where no one trust anyone else and therefore productions stall.

Id shoot the thing myself before I would deal with that.
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#13 Artyom Zakharenko

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Posted 17 February 2013 - 04:50 PM

why not showing them the end result with a watermark and send the final file when the bill is paid?


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#14 Artyom Zakharenko

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Posted 18 February 2013 - 09:31 AM

I actually have a situation now that is more complex..

 

Samsung ordered a bunch of videos at a branding company, but since they are only experienced in marketing a product they hired a director, who hired me. Now, Samsung paid the bill for the whole production, but the branding company claims there is no more budget to pay the last videos. This means the branding company can not pay the director, and the director can not pay me. Im in difficult situation right now, because i have to pay my bills, but i also cannot screw up my relationship with the director because he's one of my bigger clients. What to do?


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#15 Matthew W. Phillips

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Posted 18 February 2013 - 04:53 PM

why not showing them the end result with a watermark and send the final file when the bill is paid?

 

What if you shot on film?


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#16 Artyom Zakharenko

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Posted 18 February 2013 - 06:28 PM

record it on a watchman


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#17 Gregory Irwin

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Posted 09 March 2013 - 08:50 PM

Dont think I would ever pay anyone before the work is done either. Its tricky business, it is. I hope the business doesnt become like a den of thieves where no one trust anyone else and therefore productions stall.

Id shoot the thing myself before I would deal with that.


This business has always been a den of thieves. Nothing new here. This is the exact reason we belong to a union. We have representation to handle the "not so nice" aspects of the job and we keep our noses clean. And we ALWAYS get paid on time.

G
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#18 Phil Rhodes

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Posted 10 March 2013 - 06:21 AM

Our correspondent's story about not being paid by a branding company reflects my experience. There's a lot of work available from these places, even just shooting events for them so they can show their client, and it's a phase I passed through when starting out although I have a lot of acquaintances from the news and documentary who still do it. I do occasionally, and I can believe there's a decent career in it if you know the right people.

 

The problem is, as Mr Zakharenko says, that they can be the most appallingly bad payers. Almost all of the bad debt I've ever had was from branding and events companies, and the single biggest multi-swindle with which I ever had contact concerned a huge series of fifteen or twenty christmas events at a specially developed venue one year in London, none of which was ever paid for. My direct client was forced out of business (I got paid). I get the impression that branding agencies, despite their airs, graces and nice offices, often work on an almost hand-to-mouth basis, extremely subject to the whims of their own clients and reliant on an unstable web of contacts and acquaintances. I'm sure similar things happen in other industries - TV commercials spring to mind - but I've less personal experience there.

 

The union situation differs here and these places would not have heard of BECTU, let alone have signed the PACT agreement. Perhaps the situation is better elsewhere.

 

P


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