Legal Escalation & High Court Enforcement
Unfortunately, there are times when it may become necessary to escalate the recovery of a debt through the courts. We will only recommend this course of action as a last resort when all other avenues have been explored.
Legal action can be stressful, daunting and time-consuming. With our experienced case managers on hand, we can navigate you through the process every step of the way. For defended claims, after an initial consultation, our panel of solicitors can provide legal assistance and representation, on a no win – no fee basis*.
*For claims over £10,000
County Court claims are split into 3 “tracks”
Types of enforcement action
Issue of a Statutory Demand
This can be used without going through the County Court process.
This course of action applies to debts of £750 and over for a Limited Company/Corporation and £5,000 and over for an individual or sole trader. It is a formal written demand for payment for an undisputed debt. The debtor has 21 days to settle the debt in full or reach an agreement for payment in instalments. If the debt is not paid then the creditor can apply to the court for a winding-up order(limited companies/corporations) or a bankruptcy petition for an individual/sole trader. When using this method of enforcement it is crucial that you get to “know your debtor” and we recommend that a full pre-sue report/investigation is undertaken. Also, accuracy in the drafting and the service is crucial to its success. We can draft and serve a demand on your behalf, anywhere in England & Wales.
Bailiffs – Once a judgement has been granted in your favour, bailiffs can be appointed by making an application to the court for a Warrant of Control. This is valid for 12 months from the date of issue, although an extension can be granted by a District Judge. The warrant enables bailiffs to visit the named premises to seize goods to the value of the debt. Their remit is always to obtain full payment together with any fees or arrange an acceptable payment programme. If payment is not forthcoming they can seize the debtor’s goods and chattels in lieu, which could include any asset that is owned or jointly owned by the debtor. All fees are added to the debt and are paid by the debtor.
High Court Enforcement. – Once a County Court Judgement (CCJ) has been obtained for debts of £600 and over an application can be made to the High Court to obtain a writ of control through The Sheriff’s Office ®. This is the preferred route for High Court Enforcement Officers as they have greater powers than a bailiff to force entry into commercial premises; to levy or to remove goods. Again, their remit is to obtain full payment of the debt and fees or negotiate an arrangement. If payment is not forthcoming the bailiff can seize the debtor’s goods and chattels in lieu which could include any asset that is owned or jointly owned by the debtor. All fees are added to the debt and are paid by the debtor.