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Query on another contractor charging you "introducer fees"
Hi, could do with some advice.
A friend was contacted by someone she had previously worked with about a possible job. The interview went well, and the previous colleague gave a strong recommendation. An offer came in from the client company, was signed, and work started. The introducer, who had tried to introduce my friend as part of his own consultancy (but wasn't allowed to by the client company) then asked my friend to sign some additional paperwork (hinting that this was required for the job) which was a separate contract charging £100/day to my friend as "introducer fees". Rather idiotically, she signed it without properly reading or digesting it.
5+ months down the line, and she's paid over £10 grand to the "introducer". This appears to have been done entirely without the knowledge of the client company. This seems, to me, to be an unfair contract. The introducer wasn't acting as an agent, and was unlikely to have declared his likely financial interest in the interview candidate to the client company. There was a one-off introduction, for which some recompense is perhaps reasonable (though I've never asked for more than a beer when in the same circumstances) but surely not an ongoing commitment of £100/day to the end of the contract (plus any extensions)?
What's the best way of checking the validity (preferably without endangering the contract with the client)? Just take the introducer contract to a lawyer and talk it over with him? Go to the client company's recruiters and ask them for advice? Just take a baseball bat to the introducer's legs?
Advice most welcome.