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Pay me for my work!

Clark Behind The Headlines

From HLN's Money Expert Clark Howard

It’s disturbing how many phone calls I get from people who work as independent contractors or freelancers and are not getting paid. They want to know what they can do about it. It is a terrible problem and a lot of companies treat their freelancers and independent contractors like dirt when it comes to being paid. The way this often plays out is if somebody doesn’t pay you, the only option truly available is to take them to small claims court. Now I understand that going to small claims means you will probably never work for them again, but do you want work for a company that doesn’t pay you?

I think there should be a website where independent contractors can rate how well or how poorly a company pays. Big companies decide how credit-worthy another company is by going to look at a Dun and Bradstreet report. But what about you as the person who’s working on your own, serving at the pleasure of this non-employer, and they stiff you? We need this for those working as freelancers. That’s how capitalism works. A need is met in the marketplace and your reward for it is money – a real paycheck!!

Another piece of advice: before you take a freelance job you should establish upfront how, when and how much you’ll be paid. And if you’re providing services to a small business that might be low on cash, you should establish a Paypal account to make it ultra easy for that business to pay you. The key is to get your money as quickly and efficiently as you can.

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