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UKSolicitorJA, Solicitor
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 7870
Experience:  English solicitor with over 12 years experience
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I need some quick advice. I am a free writer and often write

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Hello, I need some quick advice. I am a free lance writer and often write texts for coffee table books by an international publisher, which are paid for by the client/brand. On this occasion, the publisher (with whom I have an ongoing relationship) introduced me to the client and the agreement was between myself and the client, the publisher was not involved, though I was a member of the team that worked on the book. The publisher however privately and informally advised on how much I should charge for the writing. There was no formal contract between myself and the client, just an email detailing the payment. I requested half of the fee upfront, the other half to be paid on completion. I have worked on the book, doing the research and trying to accommodate the client's wishes liaising with him through frequent calls and zoom meetings (he is based in Latin America). Suddenly, a few days ago, the client sent me an abrupt dismissal note requesting the advance to be refunded because he has found another writer with whom he gets along better - his words. I maintain that the advance is not returnable. I have not yet written a formal reply to this person. He has been pestering me with calls which I had to block - it's a bank holiday weekend! I got another vituperative email but he has agreed to wait for a few days. I need to know how to deal with this matter. Many thanks
JA: Have you talked to a lawyer about this? In which country do you live? If different, which country is your legal question related to?
Customer: I live in the UK. No I have not talked to a lawyer yet
JA: What steps have you taken so far?
Customer: I have only written saying that it is a bank holiday weekend, everyone is therefore on holiday that I need to consider carefully the import of his previous communications and will get back to him in due course
JA: Is there anything else the Lawyer should know before I connect you? Rest assured that they'll be able to help you.
Customer: I need to clarify that the client is based in Argentina though he is of English descent. The publisher is international , based in New York and in Milan. I am British and live in the UK.

I've been working hard to find a Professional to assist you with your question, but sometimes finding the right Professional can take a little longer than expected.

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Thank you!


I am a solicitor.

Sorry to hear this.

Did you enter into an agreement with this client? Verbal or written?

Customer: replied 12 days ago.
Hello, thank you for responding . Yes I wrote an email specifying what my overall fee was and requested a payment of half of that fee as advance. I worked on the book but like I said the client now would like to cancel it and has asked for a refund. There was no contract as such, only the email. I did not specifically write in the email that the advance was non-returnable , but this is standard practice, the work was done, it is the client's problem that he is not happy with the work. I need to write to him,. Can you advise on what I should write ? Thank you

Thank you.

You may write to him that the work has been done and you are entitled to claim fees under the legal principle known as "quantum meruit" (the amount deserved) even if there was no agreement that the money was not refundable and as such, he is not entitled to a refund and that you will defend any claim that he brings against you.

You may read up more on quantum meruit here:

All the best

UKSolicitorJA, Solicitor
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 7870
Experience: English solicitor with over 12 years experience
UKSolicitorJA and 2 other Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 11 days ago.
Thank you. Really grateful, I truly appreciate your input.

You are welcome. Good luck