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sunrise65
29th March 2012, 06:21
Hello all,

I have been contracting for about 5 years now but only just found out about this great site. Ok so my question to you learned people is, I am about to finish my current contract period on Monday but the agency hasn't sent me out my renewal contract to sign. Now in the last 6 months the payments have become very erratic and I have been left without payment for 5 weeks at the worst time although my contract says I will be paid weekly and even after emails stating that they were changing to payment on 22nd of the month I said until I signed a new contract they could not change the conditions to which they back down to. I am becoming increasingly concerned about the health of the agency as the times I have tried to contact them there have been major problems.

So if the agency don't forward me a contract to sign I am allowed to go elsewhere and go through the Umbrella company I use for my payments? Is there a period that I have to wait until I can do this or am I just stuck with the same agency and their poor performance?

Looking forward to any advice.

Regards
Tom

northernladuk
29th March 2012, 12:33
Ehh complex one this. Paying late is not technically a breach of contract so the handcuff clause which no doubt exists in the contract would still be enforceable. I don't know at what point late payment changes in to unacceptable behaviour which would be grounds for breach though. Either way you are talking lawers to sort it so that is out.

First off I would address the money you losing by late payments. Have a look at https://payontime.co.uk/ and work out what it is costing you and what you can quite rightly charge them everytime it is late. This should be a wake up call for most agents as it is your legal right to follow this up and will cost them more. At the moment it may suit them to pay late, you need to make them aware it won't anymore.

The agent will have a contract with your client (someone will anyway, not sure the chain here) so you can't really pick and choose either. If it is as bad as it appears you could mention this to your client. Generally they are not bothered what happens between you and the agent but if it causes them a significant risk that you may leave he will be interested to know I am sure. See what they say. They may be at their wits end with them and this is the final straw. They will also be interested if the agent is about to go bust as well.

Try the pay on time thing first to get what you are due and give them a chance to get their house in order. Very soon after that speak to the client.

Give us a heads up after that and see if we can help with the next step.

BrilloPad
29th March 2012, 12:39
All that NLUK said - plus are you looking round for a new contract? Are there any other contractors on site with the same agency? Could you name the agency on here and see if anyone else uses them?

And if you want to keep thinking this is a great site then keep away from general.

Very Best of luck - a warm welcome
BrilloPad

northernladuk
29th March 2012, 14:28
And if you want to keep thinking this is a great site then keep away from general.


... and particularly that BrilloPad person who lives in there. Take your wife and your job while shaking your hand he would!!

sunrise65
29th March 2012, 15:39
Thanks northernladuk,

Well I have a very good relationship with the client to the point they would be happy to dump the agency, but like you say there will still be a handcuff clause somewhere. I have taken onboard your advice about payment, but think I am stuck with them for the foreseeable as I am being extended for another year.

Hi Brillo,

No still have my feet under the desk for the moment.. :) I'm not sure naming would be a good idea yet as NLUK has already said they are not doing anything illegal as far as I can tell.

I think I will talk again to Client and see where at with contracts, but I think I am in an movable position at the mo.

Many thanks for the replies and I'll let you know how I get on.

Regards
Tom

northernladuk
29th March 2012, 15:42
Thanks northernladuk,

Well I have a very good relationship with the client to the point they would be happy to dump the agency, but like you say there will still be a handcuff clause somewhere. I have taken onboard your advice about payment, but think I am stuck with them for the foreseeable as I am being extended for another year.



Ok well hopefully the payontime think will make them realise there are repercussions to them doing this to you.

Wanderer
29th March 2012, 20:23
am I allowed to go elsewhere and go through the Umbrella company I use for my payments? Is there a period that I have to wait until I can do this or am I just stuck with the same agency and their poor performance?

Now is a good time to actually read your contract. :laugh What does it say about going direct to the client or via another agency?

I'd have a word with the client and tell them the agency are dicking you around on payment terms and paying late and ask them to have a word. The agency will scream like a stuck pig about this but sometimes it's the only way to get them to sit up and listen.

If you don't renew then make it clear that you are walking because the agency is shit. Tell them how much the agency are paying and try to find out the agent's cut too.