Originally Posted by plugsnpixels
Robert, I would tend to decline/refuse additional work until the client was caught up with past payments. Otherwise this account would be a downward spiral of diminishing returns! Of course, a talk with the client before going any further would give a sense of what the problem is this time around.
That depends. He could require payment in advance until and unless the unpaid balance is caught up. That way he'd at least not be any further in the hole, plus he'd have a ghost of a chance to keep a relationship.
If the customer doesn't ever approach him for another job then the money's 100% sure to be lost forever, in my experience. If the customer does approach him again, at least there's a ghost of a chance of being paid something for the new work, but that's probably about it.
Either way, if it's gotten to this point it's very unlikely there will ever be payment. Slim chance but I wouldn't bet on it.
Finally, taking the customer to small claims court would almost certainly cost more than could be recovered, as court filing/serving fees tend to be a few $100s.