Factsheet: Frequently asked Debt Collection Questions
At Machins Solicitors LLP we offer bespoke debt collection services to suit individual requirements. We have niches in a number of specialist debt collection areas including landlord’s service/management fees, consumer finance and business debts.
What evidence of the debt do I need?
Ideally you will have a written and signed contract. However you may have other documentary evidence, for example a purchase order/invoice. It may be possible to infer the agreement, for example where the customer has proceeded in a way which suggests that there is an agreement.
Can I charge interest for overdue debts?
Your contract may specify a credit period and how interest will be charged on overdue payments. Commercial debts are covered by the Late Payment of Commercial Debts (Interest) Act 1998. This allows interest to be charged at a set rate of 8% per annum plus the Bank of England base rate.
You may also be entitled to a fixed sum of £100.00 under the Late Payment of Commercial Debts (Interest) Act 1998 by way of compensation arising out of late payment.
How much will the legal fees be?
Depending on the level of the debt, we can offer a fixed fee for the recovery of the debt, or in some cases charge a percentage of the amount recovered.
What are my options for enforcing a judgment?
The most appropriate method will depend on whether the defendant is an individual or a company, and its financial circumstances.
- Information Hearing – the debtor is brought to court to be examined as to his means.
- Warrant of Execution – this seeks to recover the Judgment debt by threatening to sell, or selling, the debtor’s goods.
- Third Party Debt Order – the court order an independent third party such as a bank who holds money for the debtor to pay the outstanding sum directly to the judgment creditor.
- Attachment of Earnings – an order is made compelling an employer of the Defendant to make regular deductions from the debtor’s earnings.
- Charging Order - if the debtor owns a property you could apply to have the Judgment registered against their property. You would become a secured creditor of the debtor.
- Statutory Demand – this is in a prescribed form and once it has been personally served, the debtor has 21 days to satisfy the demand failing which you can issue a bankruptcy petition against them.
For further details on how Machins Solicitors LLP can assist, please contact Eleanor Broe, Assistant Solicitor in the Commercial Litigation Team on 01582 514389.