What is the name of your state (only U.S. law)? IL
I own a home daycare and I have never had a problem with a parent not paying before, until now. In my contract it states that payment is due on Mondays or the first day of the week that the child is in care. I had a child and his mom got paid on Fridays, so I told her that she could pay me on Friday as long as it was consistant....and she was.Then she got a new job and it would have been way out of her way to bring him back and forth, so she had to find a new daycare. The last day he was at my house was on a Thursday and she did not bring him on Friday, so I just figured I would get the payment on Monday...well that weekend she e-mailed me and said that she found a new daycare that day and that he would not be coming back, but she knows that she still owes me money and she also needs to get his stuff. She told me she would come by the next day with the check...the next day came and nothing...I called her numerous times and left messages and she never called me back. So finally I decided to just keep e-mailing her so I have a paper trail, so I sent her a e-mail that states that since she has not made any effort to pay me and starting then the 10.00/per day late fee is in effect. It was actually a myspace message...so I checked the status, she read it and deleted me as her friend...and has not tried to contact me or anything. His last day of care was August 14th...so it has not been very long and so far she owes me $50.00 in late fees. How long should I wait before I file a lawsuit and what do I say about the late fees, since it changes daily? Can I include the filing fee in the lawsuit? I have a signed contract from her agreeing to the late fees. How often should I e-mail her asking for payment? Would a judge really grant me all the late fees I am owed if she signed the contract and she was notified that it was in effect? I have never had to sue anyone before so I am kind of lost.
Thanks in advance to anyone who responds!