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Now I have wonderful parents who actually respect me for what I do for them and their child, but yes, I've had my share of problem parents who had to be reminded every week to pay me. I used to be shy about asking for my money in the beginning, until I realized that I am doing them a favor by "saving" them from major late fees and possibly spending their child care money over the weekend and getting further and further in debt with me. It makes it hard on me and them as well when they don't pay on time. I finally had to start reinforcing my late fees, no matter what, and letting the parents know that when they do not pay me, I am short on money it takes to buy supplies to use to take care of THEIR child during the week. I have to buy groceries, toiletries, and art supplies. It got to the point that now, I already have their receipt waiting to hand to them when they walk through the door on Fridays. When I give them their child's art work and papers for the week, I make sure the child care payment receipt is paper clipped to the TOP of the stack. It's a subtle way to remind them. Sometimes they will even say, "oh, I almost forgot", "let me go get you a check out of my car". That has pretty much taken care of the problem for me over the years. You might try that.
**For receipts, I just use one of those (rent) receipt books from Walmart or Office Depot. I've always given my parents a receipt for their payments along with their 1099 at the end of the year for their taxes. That way, they are able to dispute any discrepancies for payments I may have missed in their tax document and so am I. I always tell them that if they lose a receipt or would like a copy of their receipts, I charge a $5 printing fee.
My fees are due on the first of the month, if it lands on a weekend or holiday then fees are due the day before the weekend/holiday.
I charge a $20/day late fee and children are not allowed to attend until fees (including late fees) are paid. If you start charing a late fee and refusing child care at the door, Bet you they will start remembering.