Small businesses in California and throughout the country might struggle when it comes to collecting debts from customers. However, small business owners are encouraged to be persistent in their efforts to get what they are owed from their clients. This is generally true whether a client is doing his or her best not to pay or hasn’t paid because of a temporary financial problem. Ideally, notices will be sent as soon as a bill is past due.

Doing so could maximize the chances of obtaining the full amount owed and in a timely manner. Phone conversations should be short and to the point. Furthermore, they should remain professional at all times as customers are less likely to pay if they feel as if they are being harassed or personally threatened. Harassing a customer could also result in that person filing a lawsuit against a company in addition to no longer buying its goods or services.

It is vital that the company set up regular policies and procedures and stick to them as much as possible. For example, send invoice at end of month, then past due invoices at 30 days and then 60 days. Simultaneously with the 60-day past due notice, send a letter informing the customer if they do not pay within the next 14 days, the matter will be forwarded to the company’s legal counsel for collections. Then stick with it! After the 14 days expire, send it to a consumer debt collection attorney. If not, the customer will never believe anything said or fear the business collections activities again.

A consumer debt collection attorney may be able to assist business owners who are trying to collect past due debts. An attorney may draft collection letters or take other steps in an effort to protect a company’s right to be paid. Attorneys might represent company owners or others affiliated with an organization that is attempting to collect what it is owed. In some cases, payment disputes can be resolved favorably through mediation or arbitration.

Each and every “special” customer that the business allows to be outside these policies and procedures increases the risk of bad debt and uncollectible debt that the company will never see again.