Stooping, or fair? (rant...) - Page 2
 
 

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Stooping, or fair? (rant...)

This is a discussion on Stooping, or fair? (rant...) within the Horse Law forums, part of the Horse Resources category
  • Do you need to pay a horse bill if no invoice is provided
  • Letter to boarders that im no longer boarding horses

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    02-28-2012, 05:47 PM
  #11
Showing
If the monies aren't forthcoming by ....date... you leave me no recourse but to seek legal action. BTW that goes by registered mail.
     
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    02-28-2012, 07:23 PM
  #12
Weanling
Update! I sent out a concise letter that basically stated that their signature and initial on our boarding contract indicated a clear intent to be bound by it's terms. Additionally, the boarder themselves provided written (and verbal) acknowledgment that they understood they were responsible for providing and paying this 30 day notice as required in provision X.X. Of our boarding contract, which states: blahblahblahblahblah.

The boarder verbally acknowledged that they owed the amount provided in the invoice which they were presented. They further indicated that this amount was being paid by check when they handed me an envelope. As I was opening said envelope, this individual got in their truck and drove away with their horse. They had blatantly misrepresented the contents of the envelope by indicating they had provided payment in full (when reminded that they had to pay the full amount of $235.00 prior to removing their horse and related equipment stored at our farm from the premises). Told them the amount they "made up" was incorrect, and demanded payment in the amount of "$$" immediately. Their own letter and hard to follow "30 Day Notice" calculation (in which they credited themselves for work which they did not perform) serve as evidence that they were aware of their contractual obligation, although they clearly had the intent to stiff us (of which they provided evidence their own letter).

"Failure to remit payment by X date will result in late fees. Failure to remit payment by Y date will result in this situation being presented in small claims court..."

Our history DOES speak for itself, as all of our boarders would gladly tell anyone who cares, so I wrote out my frustrations (for myself), then wrote the actual "this is our board contract... it says... pay now" - Signed, sealed, delivered via certified mail, return receipt requested, per the requirements of our boarding contract. We'll see. :/ They aren't worth the time, really... but it is all about principle. Like someone in this forum already (sorry, can't remember who as I'm writing this) indicated, by allowing these people to get away with blatantly disregarding our boarding contract, that could send the wrong message to our other boarders, etc... Feelings aside, it was a contractual obligation and having hurt feelings does not discredit any portion of the amount owing per the boarding contract. We went above and beyond in fulfilling our contractual obligation to these individuals. I'm just absolutely appalled that they believe that it is okay to behave the way they have simply because things weren't going "their way" anymore.

I just want to say - "GUESS WHAT PEOPLE? It is NOT BURGER KING!!!!! That is WHY we have a boarding contract that clearly states what board does provide, and includes our expectations of boarders, etc. We provide services the way we see fit and to the highest quality standards. We are in business to take exceptional care of horses [which is why these people brought us their horse: she was emaciated and in poor health, which we quickly remedied]. People who appreciate what we do are welcome to be here, people who do not like what we do are welcome to not come or to leave. That simple." Ugh.
     
    02-28-2012, 07:59 PM
  #13
Green Broke
Ok. Am I understanding you fired them? And then expect them to stay another 30 days? If they were working off board and you fired them I would expect them to leave and not be concerned about the contract. You didn't give them 30 days to get another job did you? You need to move on and get over it if I understand it correctly.
     
    02-28-2012, 08:38 PM
  #14
Weanling
Churumbeque:

They were "fired" (although we didn't do it quite like the Don, and were as a nice as could be when you are dismissing someone from being given opportunities to work for credit). We didn't whine at them about their shoddy work performance, ANNNNND they were dismissed in a manner that gave them over 40 days notice that the board for the month of April would be the full amount due without any earned credit towards it. During the time in between (our notice that they could no longer work for credit and the date that they would owe full board) the board for the month of March would be due, but would be due with credit for work performed deducted from it, and if they decided to leave would additionally be pro-rated to reflect the "notice" that was required of them).

This was a completely separate arrangement than their actual "Boarding Agreement", and per the laws of our state, there is no requirement to provide notice to them that they were "fired", although we gave them plenty of notice for the simple reason that we respected them as ALSO being our clients. As any reasonable person would do, we provided the same "notice" which we expected (and that was contractually obligated by them in our boarding contract) in return. We fulfilled all of the obligations required by our boarding contract, which again, was separate from offering these individuals the opportunity to work for credit. We went above and beyond in accommodating these individuals.

Anyhow... lesson learned, we will no longer offer "work for credit" opportunities for any boarders, as they all inevitably try to take advantage of us and insist on doing what they want, when they want, and then want to get crappy when we inform them that they are not performing the job to our standards. We will only tell someone "Hey, we need you to do it this way..." and demonstrate SOOOO many times (with the people standing with arms folded and sneer on their face) before we just say "Sorry, we can no longer offer you this opportunity to work for credit..."

With the people in this situation, we even offered alternate opportunities for them to work for credit when we got sick of telling them how to clean the stalls properly... they performed their new jobs in a mediocre fashion, at best, and demonstrated a clear disdain for the fact that we EXPECTED THEM TO ACTUALLY WORK (in manner that met our demonstrated criteria and our business demands) for the CREDIT WHICH THEY WERE RECEIVING. They were never led to believe that they would receive credit when they did not work. Their own schedules were preventing them from providing the work we asked of them when it was necessary, which, in any "job" (whether working for cash or working for credit) is a pretty basic material condition to retaining the status of "employed". [P.S. Although I used caps, it was merely for emphasis, not to indicate yelling, haha]
     
    02-28-2012, 08:45 PM
  #15
Green Broke
Well alrighty then. LOL
Any way when it comes to trades someone is always unhappy.
     
    02-28-2012, 08:53 PM
  #16
Weanling
Yeah :/ It sucks, nonetheless. Anytime we discussed a "new" job, we asked what the people thought a "fair value" would be, and they were always on the same page we were (or at least indicated they were). Ah well... I feel better after getting my ranting out and then still be able to come up with a "professional" and to the point letter. Thanks for reading all this garbage :/
     
    02-28-2012, 09:08 PM
  #17
Foal
I think that a short invoice for outstanding balance is good. In a short note, I think you could rebutt the false claims in a logical, succinct manner. Take most of the adjective out, and be very clinical about what you have to say, to refute her claims. I believe you have the right to express yourself, as she did. Tell her if she would like to meet in person, that would be fine. And keep your logical, calm demeanor if you do meet up. Someone who throws false testimony will probably not meet you, though. I think it would do you good to answer her claims, though. I feel as if you will feel better, if you do write to her. Good luck. Stay calm and strong.
Nine
     
    03-08-2012, 07:51 PM
  #18
Weanling
A contract is a contract. That person is responsible for what they owe you. I agree that you should send them a bill and if no response, take them to small claims. Sorry you got duped and I hope things work out.
     
    03-08-2012, 08:14 PM
  #19
Weanling
Quote:
Originally Posted by sillyhorses    
... thanks for all of the advice, guys. I've narrowed down my 'PAY US NOW!!!!!" rant to 2 pages (down from 5) that directly address the false claims she makes that are in regard to material terms of our boarding contract. Still thinking on it.

I'd like it to be one brief page, but at the same time, I feel that it needs to address the parts of her letter where this woman (and her family) accused us of not providing credit for work performed (when they actually kept their own records and paid us based on them, which was acceptable to us because, before this instance, our records mostly matched). Apparently she believes that her "feelings" equate to us violating our contractual agreement... you know, 'cuz she was upset over being fired.

Still thinking...
Yeah, well THAT adds quite a bit to the situation at hand, doesn't it?
You canned someone who was working at your stable to pay the boarding in full or in part.
You now have a very different set of rules to play by!
If this person was in fact an "on the books" employee, IE any compensation was documented, and it sounds like it was (though no dispute of fair compensation if I read it correctly), labor laws may come into play.
Is your state a "right to work" state, or did you have an "at will" type agreement?
Did you document the work performed, quality thereof, and any discrepancies?
Did you establish a progressive discipline program, and document it accordingly, before terminating their employment?

I realize I may be taking this in a hugely different direction than intended, but with the abstract originally posted, and not knowing specifics, i'm attempting to help cover all bases.
     
    03-08-2012, 10:03 PM
  #20
Weanling
Quote:
Originally Posted by azwantapaint    
Yeah, well THAT adds quite a bit to the situation at hand, doesn't it?
You canned someone who was working at your stable to pay the boarding in full or in part.
You now have a very different set of rules to play by!
If this person was in fact an "on the books" employee, IE any compensation was documented, and it sounds like it was (though no dispute of fair compensation if I read it correctly), labor laws may come into play.
Is your state a "right to work" state, or did you have an "at will" type agreement?
Did you document the work performed, quality thereof, and any discrepancies?
Did you establish a progressive discipline program, and document it accordingly, before terminating their employment?

I realize I may be taking this in a hugely different direction than intended, but with the abstract originally posted, and not knowing specifics, i'm attempting to help cover all bases.
Thanks for your input. This individual was not an "on the books" employee. Before coming to our farm, she was given a copy of our boarding contract to review(of which, we upheld the material terms we were responsible for). Agreed to the terms in it (which are the same terms all of our other boarders abide by). They had been repeatedly asked to improve their "work" performance, and you can only re-explain the same thing SOOOO many times before just going "okay, they're just too lazy". I mean... how difficult is it to swipe some bedding to the side and find the horse's wet spot? As much as they cleaned stalls, they would have known where each horse's wet spot ALWAYS was. When we offered them the opportunity to perform work in exchange for credit towards their board, they were informed that we expected them to complete the job asked of them, the way we asked them to do it.

Not that it matters, because this was not "on the books", but we live in an "at will" state, anyhow. When we "fired" them, we gave them 40+ days notice that they would be expected to pay full board (they had earned credit towards board for the coming month). The woman got snotty and made up some bizarre "invoice" claiming credit for work which she did not perform... all because we "stepped on their toes", and no longer offered them the opportunity to live beyond their means.

We never had any discrepancies in work (they kept track of the work they performed, we'd touch base and say "ok, you worked these days, and this many stalls?", and we never had a discrepancy; they paid based on this). Our way of firing them was to simply say "We can no longer afford to offer to credit you for work, so we will no longer be assigning you jobs. Perhaps in the future, if our financial situation changes, we can work something else out..." (not that we'd ever tell them if it did, but as far as we were concerned, they didn't need to know that).

I mean... we really tried to not ruffle their feathers. We DID expect that they'd leave (they'd made many mentions that they couldn't afford more than what were paying after working a portion off), but we certainly didn't expect them to just become flat-out jerks. Especially after all of the ways we went ABOVE AND BEYOND for these people. They frequently requested that I starve their horse for the sake of "making her behave" (which was always flat-out denied, and I offered to have the woman do HER OWN RESEARCH and come to me with an alternate feed plan that provided her horse with adequate nutrition but decreased whatever the woman thought made her horse "act up"; we even had a vet advise her). We also had several instances where the woman was borderline aggressive when I was trying to explain different things to her.

So, in addition to no longer wanting them working for us... we were glad to have them leave. However, we were kind, went above and beyond for these people, and they completely stabbed us in the back. They said "Oh, we understand... no hard feelings. We don't want to burn bridges... here is our payment in full. We are just going to move our mare to the barn where our kid is riding another horse everyday, it'll be more convenient." then gave us this awful, ungrateful, whining letter in which they took no responsibility for themselves, threaten to slander us, and said they weren't paying what was in the invoice which we gave to her and made up her own. The invoice which she looked at and acknowledged as being 100% accurate!!!! I'm just appalled at how two-faced, selfish and unprofessional some people can be when things don't go "their way"...

P.S. She paid us in full after I sent the invoice, and included a rediculous letter that said that the contract "was a silly piece of paper" that meant "nothing" to her, and told us that she and her kid are "praying for us". Ha.
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