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Top ten excuses for not paying invoices

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Credit insurer Atradius has come up with a list of the top ten excuses for screwing over your creditors. Bear in mind that this is not meant as an educational document. Real Business does not endorse using these…

But, in the interests of being informative, here they are.

1. We haven’t received the invoice. [Standard]

2. Our terms are (30, 60) days. [Why not go the whole hog and say 120?!]

3. We don’t have a payment run until next month. [Sorry, mate! You’ve missed the boat!]

4. There are no cheque signatories available. [Alas, they have all had their hands removed]

5. The cheque is in the post/The invoice has already been paid. [Good old Royal Mail…]

6. The goods were never delivered or the order was cancelled. [Your fault.]

7. The goods/services were faulty or not as described. [Definitely your fault.]

8. The balance is incorrect and we are awaiting a credit note. [Don’t you know anything about doing business, rookie?]

9. The goods have not been sold/buyer has not paid for the goods yet – need sale proceeds to be able to pay. [Your stuff is crap.]

10. The debtor is insolvent. [Whoops! Did we fail to mention that when we placed the order?]

And for your amusement and delight, the good folk at Atradius have also decided to share some of the weirder excuses they’ve heard while collecting cash for their clients.

You’ll like these. They’re very dramatic.

1. It’s not a valid debt as my vindictive ex wife ran off with the company credit card. [My personal favourite.]

2. I just got back from my luxury holiday, it cost more than I thought so I no longer have the funds to pay. [You know Branson would use this one.]

3. I wanted to pay but all the invoices were in my briefcase, which was stolen on the street. [I’ve watched too many Hollywood blockbusters.]

4. My wife has been kidnapped and I need the money to get her back. [If you’re gonna lie, you might as well make it a real whopper!]

Have you ever used any fantastical excuses for reneging on a debt? Tell us about it here.

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