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Managing clients: Serious Client Delays

General question about everyone’s experiences with their own clients. I have a client that I contracted with almost 18 months ago. They promptly paid their deposit, and then all communication ended. I contacted them a number of times over the course of the last year, to no avail.

Well, they finally contacted me back, and my design rates have changed pretty significantly since I took on their project. They’re not technically in breach of contract for delaying the project (which is a clause I may reconsider in future contracts), but this project will bring in significantly less income than my current projects. Has anyone dealt with this before, and had success in charging the client a higher amount?

Next time add in a clause in the contract that all communication must be replied to within 3 working days, otherwise the project will be terminated without refunds.

I’ve experienced this a couple of times over the years.

I have the client sign terms of service which includes the following verbiage (but would be good to include something about rate changes):


If a client has not provided the required approvals, feedback, or content for any 15 day period after a request has been initially made, the project will be considered abandoned. All incomplete work will remain the property of our agency and any paid fees or deposits made are non-refundable.

Client’s wishing to restart an abandoned project will be subject to a 25% restart fee based on the total project estimate and the project work will commence subject to availability.

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