FAQs

Unpaid invoices? Clients using your work but leaving you on the hook financially? Wondering if a prospective client will pay you promptly or leave you hanging? Curious as to if some publications are notorious for truancy or if it’s just your bad luck?

Take a moment to upload any truant invoices to The Shit List and see if you can:

  • finally get that invoice paid
  • get enough other creatives together for a class action suit
  • do research on upcoming clients.
  • overthrow capitalism?????? (just kidding, sort of)

More than 70% of freelancers in New York alone report that they have trouble getting paid for their work. On average, freelancers were stiffed $5,968 in 2014.

Effective May 15, 2017, the NYC Freelance Isn’t Free Act provides basic protections for freelancers. Including mandatory contracts, 30-day payment terms, payment agreement protections, contract responsibility on behalf of the client, anti-retaliation protection, a non-payment penalties. More information on the act and recourse for client non-payment can be found on Freelancers Union (this website is unaffiliated with the folks over there, though we appreciate the work they do on behalf of us all). You will find resources at FU on how to navigate small claims court, lawyer referrals, costs on the reality of non-payment for the freelance workforce, and more. Unfortunately, the act only covers freelancers who are paid more than $800 for their work. This directory is meant to help everyone, not just those that reach that requirement.

How to use this website:

  • Browse the previously uploaded invoices to for your own intel – and maybe reach out to others who’ve been screwed over by specific publications.
  • Submit your truant invoices. Be sure to censor any information you don’t want to share in the public directory. This includes but is not limited to: your bank account & routing number, business address, phone number, SSN. What you choose to include is up to you and we take no responsibility that would indicate otherwise.
  • Share – use the fb and twitter buttons to share your complaint on social media

If you would like to file a formal complaint regarding client non-payment and are based in NYC, you can fill out this form and email it to the NYC Department of Consumer Affairs. Here is additional information on next-step options available to you if you are based in NY.

Some additional directories you may find useful: Writers of Color and Who Pays Writers. Are we missing yours? Let us know.

This website is run by Kristiina Wilson and coded by And None. This FAQ page was written by Arabelle Sicardi.
Ironically, we all did this for free.