How long does a vendor have to provide an invoice?

UPDATED: Oct 1, 2022

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How long does a vendor have to provide an invoice?

We used this catering company almost a month ago but have still not been

issued an invoice for the food/service. We have contacted the rep multiple

times about issuing payment to the company but she still hasn’t provided the info. We’re not even sure what the bill came out to because there was no initial summary of the order. Is there some rule that relieves us of the burden to pay in the future if they don’t ever issue an invoice and what is the time period?

Asked on October 18, 2018 under Business Law, California


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

Unfortunately, they can invoice you any time within the "statute of limitations," or time period within which they would have to start a lawsuit. (Technically, they could invoice you after that, but since they'd no longer be able to sue if not paid, they'd have no way to enforde the invoice or make you pay; you could simply and safely ignore it.) In your state, the relevant statute of limitations is that for a contract (the agreeent under which they provided the service): if there was only an oral (unwritten) agreement, they have up to two years; if a written agreement between the two of you, four years. So they have much, much longer to invoice you if they want.

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