BusinessCorporate FinanceLate payment legislation not robust, say FDs

Late payment legislation not robust, say FDs

Finance directors slam late payment legislation, as bullying from larger suppliers continues

Four fifths of UK finance directors believe that late payment legislation is ‘definitely not’ robust enough to prevent large companies from taking advantage of smaller businesses.

Last week Accountancy Age revealed the full extent of the problem, as some suppliers were being forced to wait more than 90 days for payment of invoices. And FDs have reacted with fury to what they see as weak legislation.

‘I’m a £13m turnover business and still get bullied by larger players,’ said one respondent to the survey. Another FD said that to combat this ‘much harsher legislation should be put in place’.

‘In the “real world” of business (as opposed to the courtroom), large businesses will always use their commercial muscle to bully their much smaller suppliers,’ said John Buckley, FD of Sauter Automation.

In response to the latest Accountancy Age/Reed Finance Big Question, 80% of finance directors said that late payment legislation is ‘definitely not’ robust enough to prevent large companies from taking advantage of smaller businesses.

Some 5% said the legislation was probably not robust enough, with just 11% saying it was either definitely or probably strong enough. Some 4% remained neutral.

‘As the FD of a multimillion-pound investment firm I can say the legislation does not worry us because payment is always prompt,’ said another respondent.

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