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3 Must-Dos if Your Client Refuses to Pay

sam vander wielen legal templates for coaches when your client refuses to pay your invoice what to do when a client refuses to pay

You know that moment when your client refuses to pay their invoice, cancels their subscription payments, etc — but you didn’t actually have the legal pieces in place to do something about it?

Well, sh*t. That’s rough.

If a client’s refusing to pay for work you’ve already done or work they’ve already committed to paying, I just want to take a moment to give you a virtual hug. There’s nothing worse than already providing services or saving space for a future-client only for them to ghost you on payment.

And what’s worse? You might have just had a client refuse to pay and then you’re not even sure what you’re allowed to do about it. That’s where I’m hoping to help!

I’ve already addressed what to do when a client refuses to pay you — but it’s equally important for you to know what to do in advance so you have ALL of the pieces of information you need from a client to be able to successfully get paid.

Otherwise, you’re always left on the defense — but you might not have the pieces you need to go on the offense. You know what I mean!?

So what’s the non-payment of invoice law then? In order to successfully collect payment if a client stops payment on something they’ve agreed to pay, or if a client refuses to pay their invoice, you’ve got to have these 3 things:


In order to send a client who refuses to pay you for services rendered, you need to have the right information about them to send them to collections. You need to have the right client info to collect payments, including their:

👉full legal name, not a nickname or alternative name.

👉Mailing address

👉Contact phone number (helpful but not required!)

👉Email (helpful but not required!)

👉Bonus info: birthdate

You can easily add these fields to your onboarding system (like Dubsado, Honeybook or Practice Better) so that you collect this information from your clients as they come onboard.


You need a no chargeback threat policy in your contracts, terms, checkout policies etc that prohibits people from contacting their bank/credit card/PayPal to ask them to get the money back. If you don’t have a “no chargeback threat” policy in your contracts and policies, you don’t really stand a chance at fighting one.

FYI: All of my legal contract templates include this language!


If you have a legit client contract with all the right legal pieces in it, you’ll be able to successfully send the non-payer to collections (either via a collections agency or a lawyer who does collections work). They’ll fight on your behalf to get what you’re owed, typically for a percentage of what’s collected (or a flat fee). They don’t always collect 100% of what you’re owed, but they can try.

Either way, without this stuff ^, you’re SOL.

And if you’re like — WAIT, where do I get contracts THIS good?! I’ve got you.

I’m Sam, an attorney-turned-entrepreneur who helps online coaches and service-providers legally protect and grow their online businesses using my DIY Legal Templates and the Ultimate Bundle™️.

Basically, I help you get legally legit™️ so you can get paid on time, work safely with clients, and confidently grow your business.

I have a free legal workshop called “5 Steps to Legally Protect & Grow Your Online Business” you can sign up for right here.

In it, you’ll learn exactly what pieces you need to have in place to get paid (on time) — and run a legally legit business, too.

Will I see you there?! Say “YES!” In the comments 👇

Ask me anything about getting paid & stopping non-payers in their tracks in the comments 👇

Get my weekly emails with legal tips for your online business, behind-the-scenes insider info on how I’m building my multi 7-figure business and more here! 👇

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