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#182819 - 12/12/08 12:59 PM interest?
sid123456 Offline
Member

Registered: 01/18/05
Posts: 72
Loc: Florida
What do you guys generally charge on late invoices? Got to take a contractor to court. So, I want him to pay fees and interest. My contract say interest but no amount. I have never had to enforce this.

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Business, Office, Estimating, Legal:
#182823 - 12/12/08 03:00 PM Re: interest? [Re: sid123456]
WireNuts29 Offline
Member

Registered: 07/24/07
Posts: 85
Loc: Mass, U.S.A.
Generally unless you are a credit card you can't choose a random amount. you have to document what your material cost, how much your supplier would have charged you had you not been up to date,and the costs involved in carrying that particular job. You should be able to come up with a round about %, say if your vendor charges 3 % on all purchases carried over month to month. Add your own 3% to that number. Basically have a number that you can document and justify

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#182840 - 12/13/08 02:08 PM Re: interest? [Re: WireNuts29]
Tesla Offline
Member

Registered: 06/16/04
Posts: 1280
Loc: Sacramento, CA
In most states the court will not give you interest unless it's spelled out in the original contract, as modified and extended.

AFTER the court renders judgement state law will normally stipulate what rate of interest builds upon the unpaid judgement.

In these trying times, don't be surprised that you can't collect on a court judgement.

It stands to reason that many, many general contractors are going belly-up right now. They figure to take many, many subcontractors with them.

Extending credit is now very, very dangerous.
_________________________
Tesla

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#182903 - 12/17/08 08:31 AM Re: interest? [Re: Tesla]
Zapped Offline
Member

Registered: 10/01/02
Posts: 481
Loc: Huntington Beach, CA, USA
Sorry you have to go to court sid, but having been there on a few occasions, I have learned a few things that may help you out a little:

Don't forget to add in any and all time you've spent chasing this guy down and preparing your case. Document every phone call, drive to the court house (including mileage), time spent filing court papers, etc. Also include estimated lost wages for the day of the court hearing (1/2 day, full day, whatever). Use your hourly rate as a cost/hr.

The idea is that everything this guy has cost you to file against him and every moment you were dealing with this instead of working and making money elswhere is a damage you incured because he has not met his contractual obligation.

Some judges will not award these costs, but it's a good leverage point to start with. Lawyers do this habitually to give a high starting point for bargaining. Law inforcement will do the same when filing charges knowing that some of them will be bargained away in court.

List all of your accrued expenses in a presentable and organized table. Be specific, but not too wordy, and show all of your calculations, just as you would do when invoicing a customer.

BIG TIP: Never, but NEVER loose your cool in court. Present yourself as professional, well dressed and clean, respectful, and even-tempered. There is nothing a judge hates more than dealing with jerk. I had a case against an employer years ago that could have gone either way, until he started raising his voice to the judge. I got all of the damages I was asking for after that.

Best of luck to you!

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