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Verbal contracts

Discussion in 'General Forum' started by youllforget, Oct 9, 2009.

  1. youllforget

    youllforget Guest

    Hi,

    I have recently been working for a client via my umbrella and employment agency.

    A couple of weeks after the contract ended, I received an email from
    the client requesting me to come in for additional work.

    I spoke with my agent who then contacted the client and confirmed.

    I called my agent again, a couple of days before to confirm before I
    committed myself to travel and hotel arrangements and he confirmed
    accordingly. I requested this in writing, it never came.

    I emailed the client the day before work was due to commence and they
    said that they expected to see me in the next day.

    I turn up the next day and was told they don't need me in until the following day. I then receive a call saying they don't need me in until next week and aren't willing to make a booking.

    Although I have concrete emails showing the clients request for me to
    attend on these days, I have no written evidence from my agency.

    I am now a few hundred out of pocket for travel and hotel and my agent
    says 'I don't have a leg to stand on' regarding proving what he said.

    Obviously I'm pretty disgusted with the agency but want to know if there
    s any way I can claim back my expenses/time from the agency for breaching our verbal contract?

    Any advice would be really appreciated.
     
  2. MickeyFinn

    MickeyFinn Administrator

    Tricky one and I am not too sure of the legalities in this. But if you are hoping to get more work from this source in the future then I would not be shouting too loudly at them about this.

    I would just do a quick email to both the agent and client pointing out what happened and ask nicely if they would look at reimbursing your travelling costs etc and at the very least making sure that they are both aware of the situation so that you do not get put in that position again.

    This way you might get some of the cash back, you stay professional, you are more likely to get work from them again than if you get too annoyed about it and you are closer to making sure you do not get hit with this again.

    Freelancing is harsh at times and this will only make you less likely to fall for this one again. Chalk it up to experience and always make sure the agent has confirmed the work with you in writing, if they don't then let the client know you will not be attending without sign off.

    Good luck!
     
  3. Lupita

    Lupita Member

  4. Kevinj

    Kevinj New Member

    From past experience I'd recommend at least some form of written contract - most umbrella organisations can point you in the direction of a typical contract which you can tailor to suit yourself, and the client's requirements where necessary. At least this means that difficult and unforseen situations may be covered. The only times I don't use an agreement these days is if the job is only for a day or so.

    In your current situation you have three choices: 1. Write it off to experience in order to keep the client (but put an agreement in place for the future), 2.Explain the situation to the client and ask for a goodwill payment and agreement for future work - if they're a good client they would agree to something. 3. Invoice them for the time and expenses according to the agreement, citing emails etc and be prepared to take it through to the small claims court if necessary, but lose the client.
     

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