My client asked me to switch recruitment agency, can I do that? My client asked me to switch recruitment agency, can I do that?
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  1. #1

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    Default My client asked me to switch recruitment agency, can I do that?

    I've been on a contract via Recruitment agency for some time.

    I've recently received an email from the agency that my contract is now paused because the client owes them significant amount of money. They said that it will be restarted when they receive all the money.

    The client asked me to switch to different recruitment agency and continue to work with them and asked me to terminate my existing contract with the first recruiter.

    However, the old recruitment agency told me that I can't work for the same client directly or via different recruitment agency.

    It is also stated in the contract - my restricted period is 12 months.

    What should I do?

    Is it ok to carry on with the new recruitment agency?

    What happens if the previous recruiter finds out, who will be liable, can they take me to the court and demand money?

    Thank you.

  2. #2

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    Switch agents tomorrow


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  3. #3

    Still gathering requirements...


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    ouc. Run

  4. #4

    More time posting than coding


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    Those clauses are iffy and are often cancelled out by other clauses in the contract.
    I had a problem similar to yours some years ago.
    A barrister friend of my wifes looked at the contract and she said the clause was not worth the paper it was written on said it would take her 5 mins in court to demolish the opposition if it came to it. Her additional comment was that most judges would throw this case out with strong words for original agency along the lines "if I see you in here again there will be lots of trouble".
    I went to work for same client different agency.
    The old agency were not stupid enough to try it. I did telling them I would be instructing said barrister.
    Issue a letter before action at the same time as you terminate for any remaining funds, subject to contract.
    Look for another contract too just in case.
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  5. #5

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    Are the original agency still paying you, even though the client isn't paying them?

  6. #6

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    Quote Originally Posted by anonymouse View Post
    Are the original agency still paying you, even though the client isn't paying them?
    This, to an extent. I’d want to know both sides of the story about why the client isn’t payin* the agency before I did anything.
    The greatest trick the devil ever pulled was convincing the world that he didn't exist

  7. #7

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    Quote Originally Posted by LondonManc View Post
    This, to an extent. I’d want to know both sides of the story about why the client isn’t payin* the agency before I did anything.
    Yeah I agree... hard to really make a decision without knowing that.

    If it was me (not legal advice) it would depend on situation. Right now its going to be challenging to find something else so it might be worth any potential legal risk but then again if I was fairly certain client has money problems and isn't likely to pay then I don't know. Might still risk it in current market depending on whether or not I like the work. Normally I would walk away from a client in this situation but normally can get something new in 1-2 weeks, these are obviously not normal times.

  8. #8

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    Quote Originally Posted by commonsense View Post
    IIs it ok to carry on with the new recruitment agency?
    And simply expect nothing untoward to happen? Probably not.

    Quote Originally Posted by commonsense View Post
    IWhat happens if the previous recruiter finds out, who will be liable, can they take me to the court and demand money?
    They will consider you liable. And they already seem to have the client liable for non-payment.

    Seriously, I've been in this exact position. I just kept banging heads together at the client and both agencies - and no, that was not easy - but in the end I made it clear they had to sort out their own mess and not drop it all on my company. They eventually did, and things were fine (think the original agency got "bought off" by the client.)

    Alternatively, do you fancy a potential court case and having to employ legal representation, etc., etc.? Probably not worth the cost and hassle.
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  9. #9

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    Something has got to be wrong for an agent to ask you to down tools. They don't put their commission at risk for no reason. It would be useful to know how big your client is and how many contractors your agent has on site. We might be able to cross of some possibilities off. Is the client not paying because they have cash flow issues? Has the relationship broken down? If it has how? Pay or quality of contractors being delivered? The client might just think the agency is crap.
    That said not many of them are not reason enough to not pay for services which can get pretty serious. I would have thought if the client had a beef with the agency they migth have indicated something to you as you are involved as well. If they've been pretty dead pan about it I wonder if the issue is with the clients and they'd rather not divulge.

    I'm leaning towards the latter and something is wrong clients end as they've not been very forthcoming with you. Also if it was a case where the client wasn't unhappy with the service from the agency they'd have taken steps to have the the agency booted out, not asked you to breach your contract. So again, them appearing to not be dealing with the agent, who their contract is with, further makes me think the clients at fault here.

    Handcuffs are always weak in our contracts and 12 months certainly won't stand up but the current agency is very likely to be able to prove loss though so will be favoured in court regardless of how bad the handcuff is worded. Does the new agency know what's happening? I'd be surprised if they'd touch you with the legal issue hanging over it all. But then again it never ceases to surprise me what agents will do for money so maybe they will.

    Horrible situation to be in but if it was me I'd be making rather a strong point that I would like to know the situation from both parties. You are risking breach of contract and court action so the client should explain why and you are contracted to the agent so would expect them to also be open with you.

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  10. #10

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    The only time that an agency will be asking you to stop work is from fear of none payment.

    So first question to ask the agency are they paying you directly or is the payment factored by someone like Sonovato - so you know where the decision is coming from.

    Then ask the new agency and make clear that your payment terms would need to be kept to and that payment will need to be made regardless of whether the client pays them and watch their reaction as you explain why that is a concern for you.

    I've only ever seen this occur where it was completely obvious that the company was in trouble - so personally (although its annoying) I would be asking the first agency to pay what I'm still owed and leaving the end client. As I suspect that they won't be around for much longer and if they are they will have phoenixed themselves leaving you with a large unpaid invoice.
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