Sound Credit Advice for Troubled Economic Times

With the unsettled state of the American economy (which has now spread uncertainty to the global markets), the manner in which companies from small to large are handling their accounts receivable will play a bigger role than ever before.

Chicago, IL, October 11, 2008 --( The management team of Teller Levit & Silvertrust P.C. in Chicago offer some of their years of advice and experience to the business community on the philosophy and practicality of how to handle the money in a market where the availability of new credit has shrunk to almost invisibility and where many in business may now find themselves in new the role as a lender to their customers.

The Early Bird Gets the Worm

There are just a couple of tenets when economies slow down and credit gets harder to obtain, followed swiftly by slower payments of accounts receivable.

1) Do not hold onto accounts receivable too long before placing in the hands of a qualified third-party collector such as a commercial collection agency or law firm.

2) “Pigs Get Fat...Hogs Get Slaughtered” is an old farmer’s saying that is very relevant in today’s business world (especially looking at the state of Wall Street and the Banking Industry today). Be reasonable when dealing with customers and don’t always seek a 100% plus recovery. Collect just what is fair and equitable and work towards keeping a customer in business too, they will remember the courtesy when times get better.

Arthur Raphael
President-Teller Levit & Silvertrust, PC

Credit and Competition: Credit terms are part of the purchase price, like it or not.

Bear in mind that credit terms are important with respect to attracting and retaining customers. If terms are too hard to bear, those customers and prospects will do business elsewhere if they can. Be flexible, monitor the situation and work with the customer. But, with a unique product or service that can’t be easily duplicated; companies may have the advantage of seeking cash in advance.

Another way to protect a company is to get Personal Guarantees. Banks and finance companies often have a priority lien on their debtor’s assets. When a company faces going out of business leaving an unsecured creditor, the only protection this category of creditor may have for a possible recovery is that Personal Guarantee held against the principals of the debtor company.

Harold Stotland
Secretary-Teller Levit & Silvertrust, PC

Work Within Your Means

With the challenges ahead, sometimes the soundest advice for any business is the type we heard from parents and grandparents years ago (that was usually passed down from previous generations) such as “Don’t spend more than you earn” or “A penny saved is a penny earned”. Here are a few tips that every business person and individual can take to protect their financial future:

Take Stock of the Current Situation
How much are sales vs. expenses and are you expecting any major capital improvements?

Set a Target
One of the primary questions big companies ask when doing strategic planning is “What are you trying to accomplish”? Once you have a goal, you’ll be able to determine just how close (or far) that your company is from it.

Pay Down Debt
The quicker off old bills are paid off, the quicker a company can start to save for capital improvements and avoid paying more in interest expense.

Economics is a “black and white” science if practiced properly. The goal is not to let that awful red ink anywhere near the books. Set a budget based on the current economic status and stick to it.

Kevin E. Posen
VP-Teller Levit & Silvertrust, PC

Every day since the arched doors of Teller, Levit & Silvertrust, P.C. first opened in 1920, the firm has continued to serve clients throughout the United States and internationally. Where others have come and gone with the ups and downs of the American economy since the turmoil of the 1930’s and through the world conflicts that followed; TL&S stands alone as the premier collection law firm in the Midwest. It has achieved this position by combining a tradition of service with the most advanced technology in order to satisfy customers' needs as the business community faces new challenges in the 21st Century global economy. Visit and click on “News & Resources” for other news and informative articles.

Teller, Levit & Silvertrust, PC
Mark V. Matz