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    How do I get paid for services rendered?
    Posted: 2013-05-29 07:37:10

    If you have provided services for a client and they do not want to pay you, you have a number of options to get them to pay you.

    The most common way of getting paid for services you have given a client who refuses to pay is by beginning a civil suit, or in other words, suing your customer. If the value of the services you provided is less than a certain amount, you may bring your action in the Small Claims Court, which will decrease both your costs and the length of time before your claim is dealt with. In Ontario, the monetary limit for Small Claims Court is $25,000. If the value of the services you provided is higher than the Small Claims limit in your area, you will have to bring your claim in the court which has jurisdiction to deal with that claim. In Ontario, this would be the Superior Court of Justice.

    Claims for unpaid invoices are usually fairly simple and can often be dealt with by “summary judgment,” which means that you can request the court to skip many of the steps in a typical lawsuit and skip directly to making a judgment on the claim. If your invoices are clear and there are no other issues, the court will likely grant judgment in your favour.

    In some instances, the fact that you have provided services for a customer means that you may be able to place a “lien” on their property. In Ontario, there is legislation that allows liens to be placed in relation to construction work, repair work, or storage services. While the rules vary from area to area, the function of a lien is always the same.

    A lien allows the lien holder to take possession of the property to which the lien relates and to sell all or part of it to recover the money owed to them. Anyone who provides a service that can be enforced by a lien has an automatic right to place a lien on the property to which their services relate. For instance, someone who repairs a car is automatically allowed to place a lien on that car. You will need to check your local lien legislation for details on how to place, register, and enforce a lien, as there are certain requirements in each area that must be met in order for a lien to be enforced.

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