A recent survey by the Commercial Collection Agency Section of the Commercial Law League of America, an industry group, found that more than 25% of all 90-day-old bills never get paid -- a delinquency rate that keeps rising, the older bills get. (For a contrary viewpoint, see "Never Say Die," [Article link].)

Length of delinquency % chance of collecting
after due date delinquent commercial debts
Due date 97.9%
1 month 93.4
2 months 84.6
3 months 72.9
6 months 57.0
9 months 41.9
12 months 25.4
24 months 12.5
Source "Annual Collectibility Survey," the Commercial Collection Agency Section of the Commercial Law League of America, New Providence, N.J., April 1993.