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What To Do If Your Florist Went Under?

Hi ladies,
     I was wondering if anyone has any advice for this situation?

We booked our florist last fall for our July wedding.  Over the course of the last 9 months he has been paid in full.

I sent him an email a week ago and never heard back.  Figuring he was just on vacation, I didn't think much of it.  Over the weekend I went to his website and got a 503 host unavailable error message.

What recourse do I have if my florist has gone out of business?  We are only 2.5 months to my wedding and I would be out $2300.

Thanks,
P.

Re: What To Do If Your Florist Went Under?

  • I would be threatening to sue for breach of contract and get my money back. Did you try calling?
  • In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/local-wedding-boards_canada-toronto_what-to-do-if-your-florist-went-under?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Local%20Wedding%20BoardsForum:613Discussion:1534e1d0-da0a-4257-a766-15f7a29d5a50Post:ee03ce8c-78d4-4c4e-bdec-175c7f5385c7">Re: What To Do If Your Florist Went Under?</a>:
    [QUOTE]I would be threatening to sue for breach of contract and get my money back. Did you try calling?
    Posted by dokchampa[/QUOTE]

    Hi Dokchampa,
         I did try calling today.  I got a voicemail message that did not announce the business name, but was clearly the person I had been dealing with as he has a very distinctive voice.

    I left a message asking him to call me right away. 

    I had always spoken to him via phone and email, and never had to leave a message before, so I'm not sure if it was always this way, or if it has changed because they have gone under.

    I don't even have confirmation that they have gone under, but obviously I am starting to get very worried that I haven't been able to reach him.
  • Even if the business does go bankrupt they still may beperforming services for a while.  So don't get too stressed out until you find out more.  Perhaps pay a visit to the shop?
  • In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/local-wedding-boards_canada-toronto_what-to-do-if-your-florist-went-under?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Local%20Wedding%20BoardsForum:613Discussion:1534e1d0-da0a-4257-a766-15f7a29d5a50Post:17d376f1-a856-49af-8dd6-04019a43fc2a">Re: What To Do If Your Florist Went Under?</a>:
    [QUOTE]Even if the business does go bankrupt they still may beperforming services for a while.  So don't get too stressed out until you find out more.  Perhaps pay a visit to the shop?
    Posted by agnes16[/QUOTE]

    Thanks Agnes. 

    The problem is they don't actually have a storefront.  He was working out of a small studio in an industrial office building. 
  • In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/local-wedding-boards_canada-toronto_what-to-do-if-your-florist-went-under?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Local Wedding BoardsForum:613Discussion:1534e1d0-da0a-4257-a766-15f7a29d5a50Post:c622df65-da2b-46e2-a9dc-edba56961835">Re: What To Do If Your Florist Went Under?</a>:
    [QUOTE]In Response to Re: What To Do If Your Florist Went Under? : Thanks Agnes.  The problem is they don't actually have a storefront.  He was working out of a small studio in an industrial office building. 
    Posted by mochapj[/QUOTE]

    Do you have a written contract? Surely there must be a corporate name.
  • edited May 2012
    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/local-wedding-boards_canada-toronto_what-to-do-if-your-florist-went-under?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Local%20Wedding%20BoardsForum:613Discussion:1534e1d0-da0a-4257-a766-15f7a29d5a50Post:2fea1809-ae81-4446-b220-2b7a05db7bfd">Re: What To Do If Your Florist Went Under?</a>:
    [QUOTE]In Response to Re: What To Do If Your Florist Went Under? : Do you have a written contract? Surely there must be a corporate name.
    Posted by dokchampa[/QUOTE]

    Yes, I have a contract, I have receipts for all of the payments I have made and I have their corporate name.

    I did not feel comfortable posting the name as I am still holding out hope that he is just busy and I didn't want to unjustly tarnish his business name if that is the case.

    I'm really just trying to figure out what my options are if he has gone under.
  • souptinsouptin member
    100 Comments
    edited May 2012
    ooh dear...this has me very worried.

    I previously worked in the flower wholesale business and saw this kind of thing happen before.  First confirm your suspicions before you get too worried.
    next, it is possible that the business went under BUT the florist is still fulfilling obligations to customers-if this is the case, I suggest you do your best to get your money back ASAP, the florist probably has a smattering of debt with all the reputable wholesalers and does not have good access to quality product (TRUST me, I have seen that happen a thousand times and seen many brides upset that the beautiful flowers they picked out and paid for were NOT what was delivered)

    I hope you have a contract/estimate/receipt's or something to prove your payment and his obligations.

    threatening to sue usually doesn't work-flowers are a tough business and most of the people in it are artists not business people so the lack of business sense can quickly tumble them into serious debt-if this is the case (and it usually is) he is already being sued by multiple other people and you are the least of his concerns.

    if all else fails and you cant get your money back and cant get flowers, go talk to another shop and explain to them what happened- its the kind of industry where people talk and everyone knows everyone. You might get a  sympathetic ear to listen and someone willing to cut you a decent discount.

    Im so sorry this happened to you :(
    Wedding Countdown Ticker
  • thank god I know where my florist lives.  Why don't you look him up and try to figure out where he lives.  Also, if you can't get a hold of him, leave him a message and lie about who you are.  Figure out who to be that would he definitely call back.
    Wedding Countdown Ticker
  • There's not too much you can do if your florist went under. If you can get a hold of him, great.  If you can't, there's not likely a lot you can do.  He can't pay you money he doesn't have.

    I would advise the same as PPs - see if you can find him and find out if he's working elsewhere and perhaps you can get your money back.  But seeing as he hasn't returned your phone call or email, he likely isn't about to do that.

    C.
  • naomikbnaomikb member
    2500 Comments Combo Breaker
    edited May 2012
    Eek, that sucks.  Unfortunately I don't have high hopes for you getting flowers or your money back...  If you paid by credit card then there might be some guarantee/refund process through your credit card company?

    Time to track down a new one, and don't pay the balance of the bill until much closer to the date!  They shouldn't require the final payment more than 4 weeks ahead.

    Where in the GTA do you live/is your wedding?  We can probably give you names of reliable florists.

  • Who is the florist???
  • In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/local-wedding-boards_canada-toronto_what-to-do-if-your-florist-went-under?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Local%20Wedding%20BoardsForum:613Discussion:1534e1d0-da0a-4257-a766-15f7a29d5a50Post:19324dc2-e845-4603-a9d5-e0511717b498">Re: What To Do If Your Florist Went Under?</a>:
    [QUOTE]Who is the florist???
    Posted by dolce14[/QUOTE]

    Hi ladies,
         Luckily, I paid by credit card.

    I still haven't been able to reach him, and so I called my credit card company on Wednesday.  They told me I can sign a letter and they will refund me and go after him themselves, so that part is at least taken care of.  I'm not sure how long it will be before I get my refund though - hopefully quickly enough that I am not out of pocket too much additional money for the new florist.

    I am right downtown in the Trinity Bellwoods area, but we are getting married at Langdon Hall in Cambridge.  I had Langdon Hall send me their list of recommended florists, but they were all booked already, which isn't surprising.  I am meeting with a new woman at a shop called Sweet Woodruff next week who is available and seems very promising, so I am hopeful that everything will work out.

    I previously hadn't wanted to release my florist's name on the chance that there was a legitimate reason that I hadn't heard from him, but it's been 11 days and I have had no calls/emails/contact of any kind.  The company is Burst Flowers.  Hopefully nobody else on here has booked with them as well.

    Thanks for all of your suggestions and help ladies!
  • I'm glad that you sorted it out with your credit card company. That was definitely going to be my reccomendation befor I read your update. In my experience, I charge back takes about 10 days (just follow their instructions, they'll credit you as soon as they send out an affidavit).

    I don't know much about cambridge, but are you opposed to DIY? I hear costco will put in a quicky order for you and the flowers are usually beautiful. With such short notice, I'd go trolling around some of the markets (st. lawrence? there's a pretty little flower shop at queens quay/bathurst) and seeing what they can do for a short term order.

    Good luck.
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