Help with unresponsive photographer

Hi there gals!  I'm new to the board, and wanted to find out if anyone might have any advice.  I got married in May of this year.  We hired a very prominent and expensive photographer in the CT area. He was was absolutely great leading up to, and during the wedding.  However, we were told we'd see our pictures in 3 months.  Then we were told it would be closer to the 4 month mark, and we would be able to see teasers that week.  Neither the pictures or the teasers ever came.  Then we were told 4 months, but we were assured we'd have teasers "this week."  Those dates have come and gone too.  As we're approaching the 5 month mark, our photographer has been completely unresponsive to both my husband's and my emails, and my husband's and father-in-law's calls and messages.  He's still posting on instagram so I know he's still working.

I'd love any and all advice you may have!  I'm starting to get nervous something happened to our pictures.  I'm honestly fine in waiting a year if I have to... It's just the total lack of response to repeated (and EXTREMELY patient and kind in tone) emails and phone calls!

Thanks so much.

Re: Help with unresponsive photographer

  • you should never have to wait a year for photographs can you list the photographers website and contact info i can email him and pretend i am looking for a photographer and ask him all sorts of questions to see if he would not avoid me.. then i would ask him where your photos are. 

    you can call the attorney general on him to he should have had some teasers right away like maybe one to 2 shots on his website or facebook then the rest a few weeks later something sounds fishy about him 

    this photographer is not from new britain is he there is another poster who is having issues with someone from nb i hope its not the same guy 
  • Thank you so much for the reply.  I don't want to put him on blast right now, because I do want to give him the benefit of the doubt.  But at this point it's starting to get ridiculous.  It's not the same person from New Britain, and I'll be sure to post back about who it is if I don't hear from him within the next week or so.  

    I appreciate your response and advice and I'm going to start looking into how to contact someone about him!
  • I would first check your contract.  If it says you should have your images at the 3 (or 4) month mark, you have legal recourse at this point.  In which case, he is in violation of your signed contract.  I have seen contracts go to 8 months for peak season weddings, so be sure to check that your promise date has come and gone. 

    If that promise date has passed, I would change the tone of your e-mails to him.  Don't get nasty, but be firm.  State something like "After reviewing our contract, it appears that we were promised (final product) on (date), and said date has passed.  Attempts to contact you on (list dates of previous calls/ e-mails) have not been responded to.  We would prefer to avoid legal action against you but if we do not have (finished product) by (date), we will have no choice but to do so.  We would appreciate a response concerning this matter."  Also, do not tell him anything like "I'll wait a year if I have to," because that may impact your legal options if it comes to that.  Be firm but polite, he has promised you a product that he has not delivered.

    Contact the Department of Consumer Protection and the Better Business Bureau.  Even if you aren't ready to get a lawyer involved, having either of those places make an inquiry with him may cause him to get his act together.  There was a case back in July where a couple had success with this, it was on NBC Troubleshooters locally.

    It is entirely possible that something happened to your pictures and that he can not deliver them at all and is now avoiding you.  It should be stated in your contract what happens in that case- a refund is usually the start.  I know a refund won't give you the photos, but at least you aren't out the photos and the money.
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  • Thanks CTYankee... the contract unfortunately doesn't have any dates listed - it wasn't something we thought we needed, especially because of all the glowing reviews of this guy online.  

    I'll appreciate everyone's advice, and will definitely keep you posted.

  • I would send them a nice letter, maybe certified, this way you will see that they got the letter.  State to them that you have attempted to speak to them and you have tried many different ways and then give him a date to contact you with some sort of information.  Like a date that you will have your photographs or at least some sort of update.  Then let them know that you will then go to social media and to the review boards if you have had no contact and then you will take them to small claims court and to the tv stations..Stand your ground.  You should at least get one update.  l had something similar happen the first time I got married and once I did the first part, I finally heard back from my photographer. 
    counting down to the big day
  • Without a date in the contract, it is going to be tough but still not impossible to get something from this photographer. I agree with missmarry2013's advice- send a certified letter stating that you expect delivery of your photographs by a certain date and that if that date is not met, you will be seeking legal action/ turning to the media/ posting fair but ultimately negative reviews online.  It is awful that you have to go through this! Good luck!
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  • Thank you all - I really appreciate the advice.  I'll keep you posted.  
  • Any update on this?!?! Hoping you got some answers, this is completely disheartening :( 
  • Hi ladies!  I wanted to let you know that we actually got the teaser photos last weekend!  Maybe it was karma, or positive thoughts, or whatever, but either way, I'm THRILLED with them.  We haven't seen all of them, but at least I know that they're not gone :)

    Thank you all for your help and suggestions!  Much appreciated :)
  • So glad to hear this!
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  • I agree with CTYankee ... check your contract.  If your contract says 3 months and you haven't get them back.  Email or call one more time, If you don't get them, I will facebook them so everyone sees.  I don't know about everyone here but 2-3 months is ok but more than 3 is not professional at all.
    My photographer's contract says 2 months.
    Good luck and I hope when you get the images, you will love them.
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