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 after all other avenues have been exhausted.
Legal action can be stressful, daunting and time-consuming; with our experienced case managers on hand (and standing Direct Access Counsel), we can navigate you every step of the way through the process.
For defended claims, after an initial consultation, our standing Direct Access Counsel can provide legal assistance and representation, on a no win – no fee basis*.
*For claims over £10,000
County Court Claims are Split Into Three “Tracks”
Claims up to £10,000 are considered a “small track”; costs are not usually awarded and should you win, you will not, therefore, be entitled to claim any legal fees associated with the claim (neither will your debtor if you are not successful).
Claims between £10,000 and £25,000 are classed as “fast track”; these types of claim are conducted to a relatively strict timetable and it can be around 30 weeks before the final hearing. Legal costs can be awarded. It is recommended that legal advice is sought when a claim is allocated to this track, since the court “directions” and documentation can be complex.
Claims in excess of £25,000 are usually allocated to the “multi-track”; unlike the small track and fast track, there is no standard procedure. Again legal costs can be awarded it is again recommended that legal advice is sought, from our standing Direct Access Counsel.
For further information about court fees please click here.
Once you have obtained judgment, there are various enforcement options for you to consider.
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 or Corporation, and £5,000 and over, for an individual, or sole trader. It is a formal demand in writing for payment for an undisputed debt. The debtor has 21 days in which to settle the debt in full or to reach an agreement for payment by instalments. If the debt is not paid the creditor can apply to the court for a winding-up order (limited companies it corporations), or a bankruptcy petition (for an individual, or sole trader). When using this method of enforcement, it is essential that you get to “know your debtor” and we recommend that a full Pre-Sue Report and Investigation is undertaken. In addition, accuracy in drafting and service is crucial to its success. We can draft and serve an effective demand on your behalf, anywhere in England and Wales.
Bailiffs: Once a judgment has been granted in your favour, court bailiffs can be appointed by making an application to the court for a Warrant of Control. This is valid for twelve months from the date of issue, although an extension can be granted by a District Judge. The warrant enables such bailiffs to visit named premises in order to seize goods to the value of the debt. Their remit is always to obtain full payment (together with any fees) or to arrange an acceptable payment programme. If payment is not forthcoming, they can also seize the debtor’s goods and chattels in lieu, which could include any asset owned or jointly-owned (subject to certain limitations) by the debtor. All fees are added to the debt and are payable by the debtor.
High Court Enforcement: Once a County Court Judgment (CCJ) has been obtained for debts of £600 and above an application can be made to the High Court to obtain a Writof Control through The Sheriff’s Office ®. This is the preferred route for High Court Enforcement Officers because they have greater powers than a bailiff to obtain forced entry into commercial premises in order to remove goods. Again, their remit is to obtain full payment of the debt and fee(s) or to negotiate payment arrangement(s). If payment is not forthcoming, the bailiff can seize the debtor’s goods and chattels in lieu, which can include any asset that is owned or jointly-owned by the debtor. All fees are added to the debt and are payable by the debtor.
Our doorstep agents are available to visit your debtor 6 days a week
For sole traders and individuals; after a judgment is awarded in the County Court, if the High Court or bailiff routes are not suitable, the following action could be considered to enforce payment:
A Charging Order: This is an order made by the court, which secures a debt against any property owned solely, or jointly, by the debtor. If the property is sold, or re-mortgaged, then the debt must be discharged from any proceeds. Charging orders can remain indefinitely on the property and the debt will accrue interest until the property is sold, or re-mortgaged, or an order has been obtained from the court compelling the forced sale of the property.
An Attachment of Earnings Order: This is a court order compelling the debtor’s employer to deduct money from wages, or salary. Such an order can only be made if a debtor’s income is “Pay As You Earn” (PAYE). Unemployed, self-employed or sole traders are excluded from this type of order.
A Third Party Debt Order, (sometimes referred to as a “Garnishee Order”): This is a court order compelling the debtor’s bank, building society, credit card, or bank overdraft to make payment(s) directly to the creditor. Third-Party Debt Orders depend on the debtor’s personal circumstances. If the debtor has little, or no, income whatsoever (or is on Universal Credit), then the chance of recovering any money is quite slim.
Order for Questioning: This is a Court Order which compelling the debtor to be questioned before a Judge under oath about their financial circumstances. Income and outgoings, employment, or home. If they fail to comply, a warrant can be issued for their arrest and they can be committed to prison. This type of order is usually used for individuals or personal, debts.
If you are owed money by a business, you can charge interest on any late commercial payment, under The Late Payment of Commercial Debts Regulations 2013. You have a right to claim interest at the rate of up to 8% above the Bank of England current base rate.
For non-business debtors (individuals), interest can be charged under section 69 of The County Courts Act 1984 at a rate of up to 8%, although such rate is rarely ordered.
Late payment compensation
Under The Late Payment of Commercial Debts Regulations 2013, you can claim compensation of £40 for invoices from £100 to £999, £70 for invoices from or £1,000 to £9,999 and £100 for invoices over £10,000 together with your reasonable collection cost tor recover the debt. Our case managers can provide you with further details, or, alternatively, for more information, please click here: https://www.gov.uk/late-commercial-payments-interest-debt-recovery/claim-debt-recovery-costs
We will never give you any false sense of hope of recovering a debt and we do not want you to waste good money on a hopeless cause. Before you consider taking legal action, we highly recommend that we conduct an investigation into your debtor’s means and lifestyle so as to ascertain the likely recovery. If the information obtained in our report(s) does not point to a successful recovery of the debt owed, then we will advise you accordingly.
Our commission rates are competitive and flexible, irrespective of the size or volume of debt. Our debt recovery services operate on a strictly No Win, No Fee basis, ensuring we’re invested in your success. Let First Capitol help you regain control over your financial situation today.
We specialise in collecting most types of debts in the UK which originate from; Business-to- Business Invoices, Debts Relating to Services Agreements, Unregulated Business Loan Agreements, Individual/Personal Loan Agreements (not regulated by the Consumer Credit Act),
Commercial and Private Rent Arrears.
Mayfair House, 11 Lurke Street Bedford, Bedfordshire MK40 3HZ United Kingdom
First Cap, First Capitol Collections, First Capitol Collections & Investigations, First Capitol Group,
We Buy Any Debts , The Debt Recovery Agency are all trading styles. We are not a “law firm” and its; directors, employees and agents neither offer nor can give legal advice. Any information contained in this website is provided as general information only and therefore does not constitute legal advice. First Capitol Limited, Mayfair House, 11 Lurke Street, Bedford, MK40 3HZ. Company Registration No. 09631772. Powered By SEO Vikings | Designed By Zero Three Digital
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