In August of 2006 I was a contractor for a social networking telephone company, Pilgrim Telephone, Inc. (I was doing this to supplement my SSDI to make extra money) I was working on a project to redevelop their gay chat product. I was doing most of the designing of the system and needed a voice talent. I posted an ad on Craigslist.org and Todd Smith at that time lived in Roslindale, MA sent me a demo package and stated interest in the sub contracting position.
I talked with Mr. Smith regarding the nature of the company he would be doing voice over talents for and what the job was. We agreed on a rate for his work and he started producing voice overs from scripts from Pilgrim Telephone, Inc. Being a contractor for Pilgrim Telephone, Inc., I would get paid for the work that I invoiced Pilgrim and would pay Mr. Smith for the work that he submitted to me that was submitted to Pilgrim Telephone, Inc.
During my tenure with Pilgrim Telephone, Inc., most of my payments for the invoices submitted were late. I fixed that problem by adding a 10% discount to the invoice if paid within a shorter time frame. Which worked. Mr. Smith was getting paid on time more after catching up on some late invoices. Mr. Smith always complained about not getting his money on the exact date, time, etc. He was getting to be a constant complainer. I couldn't terminate his services as Pilgrim Telephone, Inc. had the project almost half done.
At the end of our tenure again, Pilgrim Telephone, Inc. was starting to be late with their payments and I always kept Mr. Smith up to date on his payment status so he would be aware of the situation. I even forwarded emails from Pilgrim Telephone's accounting department to show the default on some of their payments. Mr. Smith started to send harassing emails and told me to pay or he would goto court. **He mentioned to me before he hired me that he had taken others to court who screwed him over**. I should have taken that as a red flag.
Pilgrim Telephone, Inc. still owed me about $1,000.00 in pay and it was coming in dribs and drabs. I explained this to Mr. Smith via email, he never returned my emails, my calls or any communication sent to him. Instead on 7-2-07 he filed a small claims hearing in Natick District Court for $600.00. (I honestly owed him the money, but he figured that would make it look better for him.)
On the 4th of July, 07, I had broken my knee and was in the hospital for a few days and was told to stay off of the knee for 60 days, was placed in an air cast imobilizer and when I got the small claims letter in the mail for the hearing on August 22, 07, I immediately wrote to the clerk at the court and explained what the doctor's orders were, included a copy of the doctors report. I got an answer back that Mr. Smith did not want to post pone the hearing and that I HAD TO GO.
I did not go to the hearing since I was taking pain killers and had to be in the air cast. I was found in default. When I got the default notice I called the court and was told that if I could prove my side I could go 30 miles to Natick and file a motion to remove the default. Again, against my doctors advice I took the MBTA commuter rail to Natick round trip to have the default removed on 10-4-07.
The clerk, Mr. Coleman saw me in the air cast walk in with a doctor's note and granted the removal of the default and he had to notify Mr. Smith via telephone while I was there. Mr. Coleman called Mr. Smith and from the conversation I overheard Mr. Coleman told Mr. Smith that I had a right to have the default removed for medical reasons and that the hearing would be changed to 10-12-07. I overheard Mr. Smith yelling at the clerk that he won the judgement and that he should just get his money. The clerk ended the conversation, told me to come back on the 12th of October 2007 for a hearing.
On October 12, 2007, Mr. Smith and I were present for the hearing. When he saw me there limping he just looked at me with disgust and kept shaking his head from side to side. We were called in front of the clerk and Mr. Smith explained his side of the story about my unethical practices and how he felt betrayed. The clerk stated he already heard his side at the original hearing and asked for my side.
I explained to the clerk that the monies were rightfully due to Mr. Smith and I explained the circumstances of Pilgrim Telephone, Inc. in being late and I told him it was my responsibility to pay Mr. Smith but I did not have any financial backing to pay him unless Pilgrim Telephone paid me. I also explained that this was a part time contractor position as I was on SSDI and was adding to my income for extra earnings. The clerk told me if I could pay Mr. Smith and I said yes but only in monthly installments of $50-$100 depending on any additional income to my SSDI. I showed the clerk my SSDI earnings letter and he told Mr. Smith that under the law that he would make a voluntary motion to have me pay. Mr. Smith again was rude towards the clerk. The clerk made it very clear to Mr. Smith that I admitted to owing the money, he (Mr. Smith) was wasting court time and my time.
I told the clerk that I would sent out my very first payment the day after, which I did in the amount of $140.00. I made subsequent payments over the year in the amounts of $100.00. At times when I did not have the monies, I emailed Mr. Smith and informed him. I was always in communications with Mr. Smith the entire process of paying him back. In fact at one time I told him I could only pay $50.00 and he emailed me and told me if I wanted to pay the rest in $50.00 he would agree to that.
On September 3, 2008, my last and final payment to Mr. Smith was due and I got a money order for $50.00 for the last payment and a money order for $10.00 to cover any expenses he might incur in travel or notarizing the letter that I sent him to clear the negative profile on my credit report. I also sent the package to him via USPS Priority mail to his address of 25 Fairway Circle, Natick, MA 01760. I emailed him that the final payment went out.
Mr. Smith emails me back and states that he moved to 16 Garland, Newton, MA and did NOT put a change of address in and stated that if I followed the law this would have not happened. I had the clerks at the East Boston Post Office chasing the package down and it did come back to me on September 16, 2008. In the package I also enclosed a pre-paid priority envelope so Mr. Smith could return any items back to me.
The day the package came back I immediately sent it to the new address for Mr. Smith. I emailed him with the information. The package was attempted to be delivered at his home on September 18, 2008. He told me in an email that he was not home and it was some great conspiracy that he is not picking up the package.
As of today, September 26, 2008, this package sits at his post office knowing that he is paid off in full. He is thinking in the back of his mind that if he doesnt pick it up, I look like the wrong person and that I will get in trouble. He does not know that "Sally" from the Natick Court faxed me a docket sheet of the case and she inserted an entry item #18: "Case inactivated, no future events scheduled/ Rec'd letter from Mr. Taylor stated case had been paid off."
Mr. Smith seems to be a very controlling person who has changed his address since he sub contracted for me twice without a change of address. He constantly abused me via email. He is a constant control freak who thinks he can take the law into his own hands and manipulate people and the system.
No more! On October 4, 2008 I will be filing a small claims hearing against him for more than he sued me for. For all of the postage, money order and traveling fees and not to mention the the emotional and physical stress he placed on me to go through all this.
I admitted I owed him the money and now he does not want to accept the final payment from me thinking that he is the tough guy and that this wont happen again to him.
Do not trust todd smith of newton, ma