Killamarsh Silver Band - Tour Payments

Discussion in 'The Rehearsal Room' started by tubafran, Sep 8, 2005.


What would you do?

  1. Do nothing and let the band stand the cost of £750.00

    0 vote(s)
  2. Leave it up to these people to act in an honourable way and wait for them to pay

    1 vote(s)
  3. Write a nice/nasty letter asking their intentions

    21 vote(s)
  4. Publicly name and shame

    2 vote(s)
  5. Take out a county court action to ensure the money is paid

    2 vote(s)
  1. tubafran

    tubafran Active Member

    This is a difficult thread to start but I would like some views from other banders and I've made it a poll too:

    The situation: this year we had our annual tour abroad and as usual despite our best efforts to get the money, a small number of people had outstanding payments before we left. On each individual case there would be very good reasons, e.g. don’t get paid until a certain date or joining us at the last minute to come on the tour. We had some grace in the bands commitment to pay hotel bills, coaches, flights etc by using credit cards to differ the payment.

    The problem: Three people who said they were coming decided at the last minute not to go and due to the above reasons had not paid. The rooms and flights were booked and paid in their names and because we used Easyjet are not subject to refund if not taken up.

    The question: how would you deal with these people? (by the way they are not members of our band just people who wanted to come on the tour with us).

    Options available:
    • Do nothing and let the band stand the cost of £750.00
    • Leave it up to these people to act in an honourable way and wait for them to pay
    • Write a nice/nasty letter asking their intentions
    • Publicly name and shame
    • Take out a county court action to ensure the money is paid
    Disclaimer: On earlier threads on tMP I’ve mentioned some other bands whose players came on our tour – These three players do not play for any of these bands.

    I am aware that some people will know the names of these people and I would ask that no reference is made to them by inference or statement.
  2. PeterBale

    PeterBale Moderator Staff Member

    I suppose it's easy to talk with hindsight, but it was probably a mistake to allow things to get near the departure date without all moneys being paid. One thing that is not clear, is whether or not those people concerned had paid any sort of deposit: I would have insisted on a non-returnable deposit before the final bookings were made.

    As to the action to take now, I would write a polite letter to each of them, explaining that as a result of their late withdrawal the band has been left out of pocket, and asking if they can see their way to making a payment to reduce the shortfall. To be honest, I reckon you're most unlikely to be able to recover all the missing money, and as for trying to sue, that would only work if you had a detailed agreement with each individual, explaining what steps would be taken if people withdrew from the trip.

    It may ultimately be a question of building in contingency plans when you arrange your next trip - I gather these are fairly frequent events? - with each person being charged a little extra that can be refunded if there is a surplus at the end of the day.

    Whilst "naming and shaming" is a possibility, these things have a habit of back-firing, particularly if there are circumstances behind the withdrawal that you do not know about.
  3. DublinBass

    DublinBass Supporting Member

    Actually Fran I think you've hit the nail on the head and should proceed in the following order:

    1) Write a nice letter asking their intentions
    2) Write a nasty letter asking their intentions
    3) Take out a county court action to ensure the money is paid
  4. NeilW

    NeilW Member

    4. Send Louigi and the boys round to persuade them to pay up :)

    On a more constructive note(!) offer them "time to pay" - but make sure they are regular defined payment (if lack of money is the problem....) by standing order.
  5. DublinBass

    DublinBass Supporting Member

    I like the idea of a payment plan....

    or you could just start collecting their deposits for next years tour and then tell them...hey your finally paid up, enjoy the summer at home! :p ;)
  6. TheMusicMan

    TheMusicMan tMP Founder Staff Member

    Kicking thread Francis :tup, you obviously have a difficult situation on your hands and I don't envy you here - it should prompt some good debate.

    One observation I had here though, and it relates to something Peter posted in his reply..

    ... not quite true Peter. A binding contract can also be made verbally. If an agreement is made verbally, this can still constitute a legally binding contract. It is though, very obviously, incredibly difficult to prove what was said, and thus far harder to present ones case in such circumstances.
  7. tubafran

    tubafran Active Member

    Would agree with this and it would potentially come down to an adjudication in court and who was believed in presentation of verbal evidence - however we have flight confirmations and hotel room allocations in the name of these people - the question that would be asked is why would the band have booked and paid for these unless they had a genuine belief that these people were intending to go.
  8. TheMusicMan

    TheMusicMan tMP Founder Staff Member

    ... and in my opinion (not yet qualified ;)) this could form the basis of a legally binding contract and may be admissable. The counter argument however is that someone could have made a booking on behalf of these people not necessarily with them agreeing to this or with them not knowing it was being done. The burden of proof is for you to show intent to travel on their part.

    Very interesting indeed... am hooked on this thread.
  9. Chunky

    Chunky Active Member

    Don't envy you one bit with this one.

    I think if it were my band involved I would not only write politely first to the people concerned and hope they returned either with the money or at least an offer of how and when.

    If then you got no response a much nastier letter to the individuals plus also a letter to their respective bands explaining to them the situation and action (or lack of it) of thier and perhaps their own band could put some pressure on them.

    Another option would be to speak to the local associations involved and see if some sort of ban on competing could be placed on them until the monies are paid.

    Good luck with getting the money.
  10. DublinBass

    DublinBass Supporting Member

    I don't think Fran has mentioned yet, but if they have paid a deposit, would that not show intent to travel?
  11. tubafran

    tubafran Active Member

    This applies to one out of three - the other two had to check on holiday availability at work before confirming - they did and we have mobile phone text's confirming this. So are mobile phones admissable in court? We also have mobile phone records telling us that they would not be coming after the date when they should have paid - too late to cancel the flights and hotel by the stage.
  12. postie

    postie Member

    I feel very sorry for you on this one. I think it is too easy to say makes sure everyone pays up before you go. The people involved are just being dishonourable they really should just pay up. I really don't know how they can look themselves in the face to be honest.
  13. NeilW

    NeilW Member

    If it should come to it, the small claims court judge is quite flexible about "evidence" - its certainly nowhere near as strict as the criminal court system. You'll have to physically be able to produce them though....

    (Thinking about it more - can an "organisation" take am individual to the small claims court?)
  14. HBB

    HBB Active Member

    Indeed it can!...
  15. yorkie19

    yorkie19 Active Member

    I'd propose

    a) a nice letter to the individuals explaining the situation and asking for payment

    b) a 'nastier' letter outlining the course of action you will take if they do not pay, coupled with a letter to their band(s) and their local association

    c) a letter to the individuals concerned containing a copy of the Small Claims Court paperwork. After the hearing, I would also name and shame the individuals in the banding media (4barsrest, Brass Band World, Bandsman, tMP) so that other bands do not have the same unfortunate experience with these sorry individuals.
  16. tubafran

    tubafran Active Member

    That's simple these days - it can be done on line through HMCS - Money Claim Online which is part of the Northampton Court - documents are served two days later - 14 days to respond or default judgement - 28 days if acknowledged and usually in front of an adjudicator in less than a month. The case is usually sent to the court nearest to the claimant.

    No costs allowable for solicitors etc but court can award expenses to winning side.
  17. timbloke

    timbloke Member

    It may sound harsh, but I think this is perhaps a sensible way to go in the end, or at least to threaten to go. Maybe just using 4br to cover the latest news from the courtroom. As bandsmen and women we rely on the community spirit and trust between each other, from the trust that people will turn up to rehearsals and put the effort in through to the trust that if someone says they are serious about paying £250 to go on tour, they will pay.

    What type of person persuades a band to fork out more money than they earn doing one job, with the intention of not paying it back? The least they could do is offer some compensation.

    I hope that they are tMPers, simply for the fact that without actually naming them, they will see this thread, know it is them we are talking about and realise that they've stepped out of line.
  18. Pythagoras

    Pythagoras Active Member

    Really annoys me how people can behave like this. As someone who plays for the band and goes on the tours I can't understand how people can pull out so close to going.
    Last edited: Sep 11, 2005
  19. tubafran

    tubafran Active Member

    At our recent committee meeting when we discussed this issue and in line with the majority vote of tMPers i.e. "send a nice letter" - the letters have gone out with a 7 day deadline for a reply/response.

    Thanks for the comments and suggestions and I will continue to act in an honourable manner until such time as I am forced not to.
  20. bruceg

    bruceg Active Member

    Mobile phone text messages are admissable due to the fact that they're timestamped by the mobile operator and not your phone. Some firends had an unfortunate situation last year and were informed by the police to hold onto any relevant text messages for use as evidence.

Share This Page