Approve payment terms to the customer, within legal limitsrepresents both a commercial and financial decision, affecting the supplier’s liability.
When deadlines are not respected, delays harm the competitiveness and profitability of companies, weakening their financial situation.
A situation that penalizes small structures, especially craft businesses, with less robust cash flows to meet these payment expectations.
For Olivia Grégoire, Envoy of the Minister for Small and Medium Enterprises: “Paying your bills on time is the first responsibility towards your business partners, especially when the supplier is a VSE or SME.” »
Since 2014 more than 1,800 administrative fines were imposed on experts for non-compliance with legal payment deadlines, total approx 140 million euros fine.
“Inter-company payment terms”: what are we talking about?
Every year, Directorate General for Competition, Consumer Affairs and Fraud Prevention conducts checks on compliance with payment deadlines among companies, and ensures the economic stability and competitiveness of companies.
Thus, during the first half of 2023, these controls are in place resulted in fines in the total amount of 30 million euros, distributed among 224 companies, from different sectors (fast food, water and sewage, landscaping, electronics, purchase and distribution of cosmetic products, etc.).
What are the causes of these late payments?
These controls confirm findings from previous years, namely:
- Deficiencies in the organization of accounting,
- Poor understanding of the principle of co-responsibility : if the seller is obliged to submit his invoice, the buyer must request it in order to be able to pay it before the deadline. Failure to comply with these obligations can therefore lead to exceeding payment deadlines.
A total of 224 administrative criminal proceedings amount to more than EUR 30 million (including EUR 15.8 million in fines and EUR 14.3 million in pre-trial fines).
Consult with sanctioned companies