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Ely
Ely, Counselor at Law
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 102584
Experience:  Private practice with focus on family, criminal, PI, consumer protection, and business consultation.
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I have a question concerning me as a freelancer and my

Customer Question

I have a question concerning me as a freelancer and my client. The client, who admitted the project was a rush job, is refusing to pay my invoice. Siting that since I didnt finish the project, even though they took the completed files and are using them -- I have server logs that show activity on my server from their server -- up to 2 weeks later. They are saying that I left them in the lurch even though I was waiting for them them to get back to me as they were seeking another person to advise me on how to proceed. There is no contract just word of mouth as I have worked with them before. Is it going to help to send them a letter stating their need to pay outlining they took the files and I have both receipt of them taking the files and that I have records of them hitting the development site until I sent the invoices.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Legal
Expert:  Ely replied 1 year ago.

Hello and welcome to JustAnswer. Please note: This is general information for educational purposes only and is not legal advice. No specific course of action is proposed herein, and no attorney-client relationship or privilege is formed by speaking to an expert on this site. By continuing, you confirm that you understand and agree to these terms.

I am sorry to hear about this situation.

Is it going to help to send them a letter stating their need to pay outlining they took the files and I have both receipt of them taking the files and that I have records of them hitting the development site until I sent the invoices.

Likely, yes. This is what is known as a demand letter, which basically states "pay me or I sue you." While this is not mandatory, it is often used and to a good degree of success, against individuals and businesses. Attorneys sent them out all the time. The demand letter offers a way to settle the matter without having to resort to litigation, which is both expensive and time consuming.

It would help to use counsel if possible. If one decides to send the letter without using counsel, it would be helpful to use some verbiage to show that the threat is serious, such as breach of contract under New Hampshire: "An action in contract is based upon a failure to perform a special agreement and the damages recoverable are the difference between the values of the condition promised and the actual condition, including incidental consequences fairly subject to contemplation by the parties when the contract was made." Lakeman v. La France, 156 A.2d 123, 127 (N.H. 1959).

A demand letter normally gives about 10 business days to two weeks to make payment.

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Expert:  Ely replied 1 year ago.

Hello again. This is a courtesy check in to see if you needed anything else in regards ***** ***** question because you never responded or replied positively. I am simply touching base. Let me know. Thanks!