Late paying client…… should I charge interest or not?

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  • Late paying client…… should I charge interest or not?
  • sharkbait

    Client = a Plc that I’ve done work for over the last 8 years.
    I have a couple of invoices in with them right now, the main one is for £16k of which £4k is mine (rest is VAT and cost of hardware which I’m being chased for now).
    It was due on 7th December so 5 weeks overdue. I have left phone messages and emails requesting payment, with the last one being a week ago giving them 7 days before further action without notice.

    I’m not worried that I’m not going to be paid, but I need the money right now and don’t want to dip into savings. I don’t want to risk future work either.

    So, before I do something that may come back to bite me, should I just leave it or send them an invoice for the interest and compensation that the law says I’m entitled to (about £250 so far)?


    Depends in what they told you when you phoned them and whether you want to work for them again. It may be just someone late in signing off your invoice.


    Nobody there when I phoned and no replies to any emails. Tricky bit is that my mate is the IT Director there – but he’s not involved in invoice paying.

    Premier Icon nickdavies

    Send a 7 day letter before action. Don’t charge interest as it’s not going to be that beneficial to you and if they can spend that kind of money again it’s a bit shortsighted IMO.

    That way they can save face and pay you and blame a clerical error. Job done.
    And if they don’t pay, take em to court and charge all the interest you like!

    Premier Icon theotherjonv

    From the other side – I worked for a large MNC and they had a policy to pay invoices as late as possible; every day outstanding was a positive impact on working capital. At the same time the sales group were murdered over payment terms, trying to get 60’s to agree to 45, 45 to agree to 30, and so on.

    If you don’t want to upset a client, start dicking them for interest on the pass through amount that you now have to pay, but not on your fee. Send them a revised invoice for the recalculated amount with payment in 7 days or it gets revised again. TACOT.


    If you have sent the a correct “7 days before legal proceedings”. Then at 7 days start the legal proceedings, no legitamate company likes a CCJ (PLC), they may/will go through periods when it suits them to late pay.

    You should not be afraid to take your mate a beer and ask if his company is in trouble. When he says yes here is your opening.

    edit forget the interest.


    Lots of companies are just looking for excuses not to pay in the current climate, no matter how big,also check the email address is correct, somebody may have left ,send a recorded delivery letter to their head office, and then hope they pay you.

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