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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 47340
Experience:  Qualified Employment Solicitor - Please start your question with 'For Ben Jones'
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, I am a qualified electrician by trade. I took on a job

Resolved Question:

Hello, I am a qualified electrician by trade. I took on a job on a trial basis for a ltd company. My point of contact was with the director of the company. The job took just over a week and it was agreed that this would be a paid trial and if all was well I would be offered a full time job with the company, which by the way I was offered the job but refused it based on pay and other terms. I completed the job as per the instructions given to me. At no time did I receive any complaints to the standard of my work from the company who hired me or the actual client of the company who was receiving the work done to their property. Now the director is giving me a load of excuses as to why he is not paying me the money owed for my services, which is in excess of £1000. First of all he said he needed to inspect the work carried out by me and to check with his client if everything was satisfactory, which fair enough I gave him the benefit of the doubt on that one, even though there were no issues during the job, either with him or his client. He told me the date the inspection would be carried out and I gave him a few days to get back to me, which of course he did not do. This obviously resulted in me having to call him back, incidentally, I took it upon myself to check with his client if all was well and he told me everything was good and there would be no reason for me to not get paid by his contractor who has received payment upfront by himself. He then told me that the money would be paid into my account, that was supposed to of happened last friday. Checked my account and as of yet no money. I tried several times to contact him by phone and also sent texts, a lot of the times he ignores my efforts. The last text I sent him I explained that I had spoken to his client and that there were no issues with him and that he went onto explain that he had issues over money with the contractor and that he had already paid him for the work that I have carried out. This prompted him to reply to me and now he is just bluffing and giving me a load of excuses as to why he is not paying me, such as his client has not given him any money, as to which I replied that he employed me not his client, therefore he owes me for the work I carried out. The discussion got a bit heated which resulted in him insulting me, with something I shall not repeat and cutting me off and now when I try to call him he has blocked my number. I have nothing in writing, it was all agreed verbally as I stated before it was on a paid trial basis. I checked some forums and apparentally he has done this before to other sub contractors and also there were some plumbers on the job who were also complaining about him. It seems to me that he sub contracts some of the work out, gets his job done, gets paid for it but then does not honour his agreement with the sub contractors. This is not the first time this has happened to me. I have had this experience with other companies too and was left out of pocket and also with no payment, they got away with it because I did not pursue matters but I am so insensed and disgusted that these people are nothing but crooks that do not want to pay for an honest job done that this time I want to get justice and see what my options are. I would be grateful for some legal advice. Thankyou.
Christopher Sofroniou
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Employment Law
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 2 years ago.
Ben Jones : Hello, my name is ***** ***** it is my pleasure to assist you with your question today. When did you start the job?
Customer:

Hello Ben, the job was started on the 15th of Feb 2015 and was completed on the 24th Feb.

Ben Jones :

Thanks. Whenever a dispute arises over money owed by one party to another, the debtor can be pursued through the civil courts for recovery of the debt. As legal action should always be seen as a last resort, there are certain actions that should be taken initially to try and resolve this matter informally and without having to involve the courts. It is recommended that the process follows these steps:



  1. Reminder letter – if no reminders have been sent yet, one should be sent first to allow the debtor to voluntarily pay what is due.

  2. Letter before action – if informal reminders have been sent but these have been ignored, the debtor must be sent a formal letter asking them to repay the debt, or at least make arrangements for its repayment, within a specified period of time. A reasonable period to demand a response by would be 10 days. They should be advised that if they fail to do contact you in order to resolve this matter, formal legal proceedings will be commenced to recover the debt. This letter serves as a ‘final warning’ and gives the other side the opportunity to resolve this matter without the need for legal action.

  3. If they fail to pay or at least make contact to try and resolve this, formal legal proceedings can be initiated. A claim can be commenced online by going to www.moneyclaim.gov.uk. Once the claim form is completed it will be sent to the debtor and they will have a limited time to defend it. If they are aware legal proceedings have commenced it could also prompt them to reconsider their position and perhaps force them to contact you to try and resolve this.


Whatever correspondence is sent, it is always advisable to keep copies and use recorded delivery so that there is proof of delivery and a paper trail. The court may need to refer to these if it gets that far.

Ben Jones :

I hope this clarifies your position? If you could please quickly let me know that would be great, as it is important for us to keep track of customer satisfaction. Thank you

Customer:

Thankyou for your response. I was going to send him a copy of my invoice plus a covering letter basically stating what you have just told me through the post. I did send him my invoice via e mail previously but it has been ignored, also have tried calling him again, but he is not taking any of my calls so will try the above. I was also thinking of going on social media and other relevant sites to ask other trades people and also clients of his if they have had any bad experiences with his company. If this proves successfull then I was thinking of going to trading standards to complain about his company and ethics, as I think I am not the only person who he has done this to. Should I tell him that I am doing this in the hope he might pay me what he owes me as he might not want the bad publicity!

Ben Jones :

yes you can tell him of your plans to contact TS and even that you are considering going to court - such pressure can sometimes work in prompting the other side to reconsider their position, even if you do not go ahead as you have said

Customer:

what about social media...is it legal to warn people to not do business with him as he is not trustworthy. I have seen companies being given bad reviews on line and obviously that is no good for your business.

Ben Jones :

if you are entirely truthful with your comments and just state the facts then it is acceptable but try not to make personal comments or state information which you cannot prove if challenged

Customer:

Thankyou for your advice.

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