I actually do some act as an independent webmaster, that I actually do my very own hosting. I've one client who's very behind on having to pay me. His domain is registered during my title not his. Could it be ethical that i can threaten to allow it expire unless of course he brings his account current?

It isn't a threat, it is simply business. If he is not having to pay, he is not titled to the services he needs you to definitely render. Just inform him within the best and honest method of his situation.

Whether it means almost anything to him, he's certain to plainly.

Yep. I wouldn't pose it as being a threat though - just state that it will lead you a couple of hrs (not so many, but it is still your time and effort) to resume the domain, which you'll require all previous bills compensated entirely before anymore work can proceed.

Arrived at think about it, that kinda is a threat... huh well i guess. )

I wouldn't allow it to expire ... the empty page is much better.

Whether it expires, he is able to have it and try to escape to another person without having to pay. Its most likely the greatest factor you've over him.

Why wouldn't you support him and the accout when he isn't having to pay his bills? It isn't a threat, it's stating the apparent.

Most certainly ethical.

Generally though, I attempt and guard against overtime at the outset of anything by making certain I've the authority to charge interest on late obligations. What the law states is in your corner with regards to this (within the EU, unsure about elsewhere).

If you are located in the EU this link may be helpful:

Overtime legislation within the EU

Please be "firm but fair" with clients over this. Many self employed are involved when they get firm using the customer it might sour the connection. My undertake it would be that the relationship continues to be soured anyway with this point. I additionally find you'll tend to obtain more respect from clients if you're firm over points such as this in the start - you've more possibility of the connection being seen by them as Business-Business instead of Employer-Worker

Best of luck on getting that cheque :)

Yes it's. Though, as nickf states risks aren't what you want.

You're presently having to pay for that domain, right? Then send your client a contact or letter telling him that because of overtime his domain can get cancelled, and hold your obligations for that domain. You can place a clear page or "this domain is temporarily not being used" because the index too maybe.

Just try to keep the behavior polite and proper, to ensure that you cannot cause a disagreement in cases like this.

Yes, I believe you're within your privileges to seize control from the domain (but renew right, don't really allow it to expire!!)

Most importantly you have to keep him informed, and do not think about it as being a threat he isn't having your services because he isn't having to pay you.

Oh here's a concept, ignore ethics, and seek legal counsel.

legal != ethical

Certainly renew instead of expiring. It will likely be lost to everybody except a cyber-squatter whether it does expire.

I don't know exactly what the contractual plans are you have using the client, however when I did previously freelance I'd a notice within the contract when I had been controlling the website, upon non-payment (3 months delinquent), their account could be "suspended". The phrase suspended was that the non-payment page could be set up, which essentially stated the site have been deactivated due to non-payment. I still incorporated the organization contact details so their clients could give them a call, foreseeing the embarrassment of needing to response to what essentially states "your website states you're a deadbeat" would either make sure they are pay, or move ahead.

I only had two clients that arrived at that much cla of delinquency. One compensated within 24 hours the notice increased and also the other compensated after his lawyer stated that there is nothing that may be done apart from having to pay the balance.

I believe the ethics issue is in your client side. If he does not purchase something he shouldn't acquire one.

I'd either allow the domain expire or place a webpage stating "Domain Not available, please repeat the process latter".