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Jo C.
Jo C., Barrister
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 32086
Experience:  Over 5 years in practice
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I had a company which went into official receivership in September

Customer Question

I had a company which went into official receivership in September 2013. In December 2012, that company supplied a generator and installed it (site FS). The generator was tested on site and all signed off. The customer which was supplied the generator was in a chain of suppliers to the main on site contractor. I had a second company which, although was in a different line of work, took over some of the customers from the company which went into receivership. The customer we supplied the generator to has continued to trade with this second company, in 'generator' type work and they've been fully aware that we are not the same company. The (FS) generator was out of warranty at the end of 2014. Up to that point we have not been made aware of any problems. In February 2015, the customer's MD demanded we attend the FS site as the main contractor had asked them to attend as they were having problems with the generator. As we have had a reasonably good working relationship with this customer we attended site. At the meeting we advised them that any work undertaken would be chargeable. They instructed us to carry out certain tests. We engaged 2 other companies to carry out different tests and it was found that the generator was operating to the original specification, so there was nothing wrong with it. They now refuse to pay our invoice, saying that until they get paid by the main contractor, they're not paying us. They keep blaming the generator but we have proven that there's nothing wrong with it. I have told them that the generator was supplied by the liquidated company and that our second company has nothing to do with the original supply. They have said in a email that they are chasing payment themselves and will pay us when they get paid which to me is an admission that they owe us the money. They don't want to play hardball with the main contractor because they are a big customer of theirs and they don't want to upset them. Our customer is cash rich and can afford to let this go, but we can't. Any advice?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Alex J. replied 1 year ago.
Hi, Thank you for your question and welcome. My name is ***** ***** I will assist you. Have you invoiced this customer directly? Did you receive written instructions from the customer? Did you ever accept "paid when paid" terms for example did the customer ever say you were bound by their terms and conditions? Do you need to maintain a future relationship with this customer? Kind regards AJ