by: Aimee Lewis
DENVER (KDVR) — Dozens of photographers from across the country are accusing a local photography company, Suzanne Nevill Photography, of withholding tens of thousands of dollars in payments, leaving newlyweds without a single photo from their wedding day.
Many of those photographers reached out to the FOX31 Problem Solvers, only to discover they were not alone in their fight for payment. Now, dozens of photographers from Colorado to Pennsylvania, have issued a warning to brides nationwide to avoid Suzanne Nevill Photography.
“This whole thing is awful,” Krista Juhl told the Problem Solvers on Sunday. “I really hope she knows the magnitude of how she has treated people.”
Since Sunday morning the Problem Solvers have been hearing stories from dozens of photographers describing what they call, a years-long scheme.
Nevill is accused of booking weddings and then last minute, backing out with dramatic excuses as to why.
“She told me the photographer she hired ‘broke her leg’ so she needed to hire someone immediately and it was an emergency,” said Rekira Luketic, an Ohio wedding photographer.
Associates would step up to help, feeling sorry for Nevill. But after shooting the weddings, a promised second payment deposit would never come, which meant the brides didn’t get their pictures because the substitute photographer was never paid.
Juhl has shot several weddings for Nevill, but never got paid for the last two weddings she worked over the summer. She’s owed $1,300.
“I feel really bad for all of the people in this situation. Photographers and clients included,” said Amy Graham, a Colorado based photographer who is owed $800. “I would like to be paid for the time that I worked. I work really hard for the couples I photograph as if they were my own.”
Most photographers that spoke with the Problem Solvers shared a similar story of how they met Nevill, connecting with her on Facebook and often getting hired last minute to do the job as an associate photographer. Many said the excuses given by Nevill for needing help are often extreme.
“She told me the photographer she hired ‘broke her leg’ so she needed to hire someone immediately and it was an emergency,” said Jordin Atteridg, owed $3,000 for three weddings she shot this summer.
Atteridg said she’s tried contacting Nevill on a weekly basis to get the money she’s owed but always gets a different excuse.
“She kept telling me, I’ll pay you today, I’ll send a payment this weekend, and nothing ever came,” said Atteridg. “It got to the point where she owed me thousands of dollars and I could not work for free anymore.”
“The worst part of all of it is these poor couples that don’t have their photos,” Atteridg explained. “All of us are holding on to these photos not to be jerks, we are doing it because it’s the only thing we have to get paid.”
Nevill responded to the Problem Solvers request for comment, saying in part:
I had bit off more than I could chew. I was often overworked and tired and burnt out – all things an experienced photographer will tell you will happen if you do not value yourself. As my family has grown and life has changed, my availability and priorities have changed quite a bit, making it hard for people to get in for their sessions. So I started an associate program – where I would hire photographers to shoot for me. It was great at first, when I only had one but the same thing happened, I kept booking more and more and needed more and more people. I slowly started getting more behind. I didn’t know what I was doing. I thought the more I booked, the more money I’ll be in and eventually I will dig myself out of this. But it just kept getting worse and worse.
Nevill has filed for bankrupcy and said she plans to pay everyone back.
However, Nevill is still advertising photography sessions as of Sunday.
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