Before taking any formal legal action, it’s a good idea to send a final demand for payment to the client. There a good chance that the threat of legal action included in a final demand can convince the client to finally pay their overdue invoice. If not, the final demand for payment serves as important evidence in court that you made a final attempt to settle the issue before suing your client.


A final demand for payment should be a formal demand letter that includes the following:


  1. A Statement of Account – letting the client know they’re in default on the invoice payment;
  2. The total amount owing for the invoice(s) and any additional late fees that have accumulated;
  3. A request for payment by a certain date/deadline date for the full amount owing on the invoice;
  4. Advise that you will pursue legal action if the invoice isn’t paid by the deadline.


If you still don’t receive the money owed for your invoice(s) after sending a final demand for payment, it’s time to evaluate whether it’s worthwhile to sue your client for non-payment.  Assess what you’re owed: the total amount owing for all your invoices, as well as any related expenses for which you haven’t been reimbursed.



Small Claims Court is typically the least expensive and least time consuming legal option available for businesses and individuals, looking to collect on debts compared to filing in Court of Queen’s Bench. It is meant to solve disputes quickly and the process is straightforward enough.


You can file a Small Claims case in Alberta Civil Court – if the amount owed to you is $50,000.00 or less.


The maximum amount varies from Province to Province.

Who Pays Court Costs in Small Claims Court?


Once the judge rules on the case, they will usually award the court costs/fees to one of the two parties: either you, the plaintiff or your client, the defendant. It’s likely that whoever wins the case will win at least the court court/fees.