Our company was a direct contractor with First American Field Services, to do property preservation for their asset managed portfolio. This asset portfolio had clients such as Wells Fargo, Lehman Brothers, GMack mortgage, Sasxon mortgage and many many more.
We received work orders describing the work scope for each property.These work orders were deposited in our company's box within the FAFS web site.
As we completed each job, we had to upload our before and after photos to FAFS, along with our invoice.
We started receiving fractional payment for some of our invoices, some invoices were paid in full, and other invoices were zeroed out.
FAFS, has a dedicated payment dispute department that handles inquiries such as ours.
The problem with FAFS payment dispute department is that they are backloggded for 8 months from our date of inquiry.
We tried to reason with this department to no avail.
We tried to inform them of the hardship they are creating to us to no avail.
We informed them that they are driving us out of business but they did not care.
This due process was a lengthily one, and we continued to work hoping to resolve the money issue with FAFS.
The relationship with FAFS, lasted about four months, and by that time we were in the hole for about $25,000.00.
Having unfruitful efforts to collect money owed to us for completed work, we decided to take them to court.
Going to civil court would cost more than FAFS owes us!
Their board of directors are judges!
Than we filled with the small claims court 5 different complaints, due to the fact that our invoices had different categories, and we were successful on filling these claims.
Once FAFS was served, an in-house attorney Mr. Thomas contacted me, to find out about the claims that I had filled.
Mr. Thomas then arranged for a conference call with Mr. Chuck Mohan of FAFS, who tried to advise me that was spending time on my claims, and that it was costing FAFS money to do that.
My response was that in the least he was getting paid, and that I did not want to hear it because still to today, I am trying to collect moneys that we worked very hard for from FAFS.
On May 22nd Mr. Thomas and Mr. Mohan called me again to tell me that Mr. Mohan's research of my claim resulted to FAFS owing me $230.00.
I was shocked and informed him that he's making a mistake, and that he should go back and do the research again, and to email me the results.
On May 26th Mr. Mohan emailed me the results of his second research and showed that FAFS owes us $230.00.
I looked at Mr. Mohon's research and I found that FAFS stating on many occasions that FAFS never send me to do the work on these claims, and that the job was done by other contractors.
I did not respond immediately to this email due to the fact that I need to work, and had given priority to my work.
Last week I spoke to Mr. Mohon, who stated if we can resolve this between us so we don't go to court. Than Mr. Mohon stated how about your claim is about $14,000.00 right?
I said no. My claims stand at about 22K and right than he dropped the issue.
I informed Mr. Mohon that I have copies of the work orders and copies of all the photographs that I took on the job sites.
He was speechless. I guess he did not accept to hear this peace of information.
Next week (June 24th, 2009) we are appearing in small claims court in Chatsworth Ca.
I know now that we may loose the case because they have plenty of attorneys that they employee to make sure that they can get away without paying their contractors.
In addition to that FAFS has judges on their board of directors.
I am just a simple American hard working woman that stands no chance with those big guys.
But I will share one thing with all of you!
I will not lose laying down.
I beleive in the American judicial system!
And I beleive that my story may help someone else somehow!
Granada Hills, California