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    It is often the case that a Letter Before Action is enough to persuade a client to pay their debt, if not we will then look to the courts.

    A different approach

    In the current environment the Courts are backed up with cases and if you want to get the money that is owed to you it could take a very long time. Months if not years.

    Nevertheless, it is important you follow the legal process. Ideally we want to resolve and collect the debt you are owed without going to court. At Encore Debt Recovery we can act on your behalf to create a positive, productive conversation between you and your debtors.

    Mediation is a tool for maintaining good relationships. It allows both sides to air their side and provides amicable solutions. Relationships with repeat custom or one party relying on another can become frictional if debt becomes a problem.

    When a relationship between businesses or business and consumer needs maintaining, mediation is a much gentler method of recovery than enforcing a CCJ or a high court writ. If you have a good working relationship with your debtor, mediation could be a method to keep everybody happy.

    Alternative courses of action

    • If mediation fails or is not appropriate we can send a 7 day letter to the debtor asking them to pay the debt in full.
    • The debtor needs to provide hard evidence and facts to prove that it was reasonable for them to refuse to pay some or all of the money owed.
    • Without this evidence we will then issue a 21 day statutory demand, which is backed by the law
    • If debtors still fail to pay, after 18 days we can then make preparations to enforce bankruptcy or a winding up petition.

    This process is much quicker than turning to the courts, it is legally enforceable and often results in a client paying the debt sooner, rather than face the consequences of bankruptcy.

    If Court Action is Appropriate

    There are circumstances where court action is the most appropriate route to take. In which case this starts with A Letter Before Action (LBA). This is a formal letter requesting the payment of a debt to your business and warns of the imminent issue of a court claim.

    An LBA sets out what is owed to your business from a debtor and provides a set time period – usually 7 days – in which to pay. This is an essential requirement of the debt recovery process. Before issuing any legal proceedings, a Letter Before Action must be sent or costs may be forfeited.

    It is often the case that an LBA is enough to persuade a client to pay their debt, if not we will then look to the courts.

    Legal proceedings

    If you send a Letter Before Action to your debtor but you do not receive a satisfactory response, the next stage is to issue legal proceedings through the County Court. This is a formal process where the debtor will be sent a court form requiring them to pay the debt, plus interest and costs within 14 days. If the Late Payment of Commercial Debts (Interest) Act 1998 applies, compensation of £40 – £100 per invoice will also be added to the value of the claim.

    Issuing a Claim

    At Encore Debt Recovery every claim is checked by a senior member of our team before being sent to the Court, to ensure you are suing the right person in the right way and that we are giving you the very best service possible.

    Getting Judgment

    A County Court Judgment (CCJ) is a Court Order confirming the debtor has defaulted on payment. The CCJ is the final decision by the Court which gives you the power to take enforcement action in order to collect the debt. The CCJ is also recorded against the debtor’s credit record affecting their ability to obtain credit.

    Enforcement

    Once a County Court Judgment (CCJ) has been entered against a debtor it is then possible to ‘enforce’ that Judgment immediately. There are many different Enforcement methods that can be used depending on the circumstances of the individual case. To give you the best chance of collecting your debt, our team will always advise on the most appropriate method of Enforcement based on their experience and expertise with similar cases.

    Enforcement options

    • High Court Enforcement officers
    • County Court Bailiff
    • Third Party Debt Order
    • Attachment of Earnings
    • Charging Order
    • Information Order
    • Winding Up Proceedings
    • Bankruptcy Proceedings

    Contact our Legal Team today

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