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Collections Assistance

The BBB may be able to help.

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Having trouble collecting on a bill? Your Better Business Bureau(BBB) may be able to help. Many BBBs now assist withbusiness-to-business disputes regarding payment as a part of theirdispute resolution service. BBBs do not operate as collectionagencies, and there is no charge beyond standard membershipdues.

When the BBB gets involved, there can be three possibleoutcomes. First, the account may be paid; second, the BBB can serveas a forum for arbitration; third, if the company refuses to pay orarbitrate, the complaint is logged in the BBB's files for threeyears.

Most businesses find a call from the BBB a powerful motivator topay up. If the debtor belongs to the BBB and refuses to pay, itsmembership could be revoked. To find out if the BBB in your areaoffers this service, call the membership services department.

Excerpted from Start Your Own Business: The Only Start-Up GuideYou'll Ever Need

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