The title of this post was inspired by the movie, Catch Me If You Can, a biographical film about the life of Frank Abagnale. He was a con artist, posing as a pilot, doctor and other roles, issuing fake checks for services. The movie follows the FBI agent chasing Frank across the country as he commits one fraud after the other.
Zero intention to pay
The modern version is where you deal with customers that have zero intention of paying what was agreed upon. They willingly accept the contract, quote and invoice. They may even make the initial deposit. After the work is completed, in their mind, they do everything they can to avoid paying the outstanding balance. Sometimes they provide fake information, making it difficult to track them down. Or they simply change their cellphone number and move on to the next victim.
In the unlikely event you find them, they are unfazed by legal recourse. They already have a low credit score. They know that a small business lacks the legal resources to pursue them, given the time, cost and legal procedures that are required.
Catch me if you can because the money is never coming with these types of customers.