When a payment is late this can cause significant disruption to your business. Even the most cautious businesses will occasionally suffer from bad debts that can harm your cash flow and ability to operate, as well as potentially threaten the future of your business. Chasing these debts can be time-consuming and frustrating, but here at Mezzle our specialist debt recovery lawyers can ease this burden quickly and cost-effectively recovering the money you are owed.
We can offer you clear, practical advice and will discuss all the options available to establish the most appropriate way of dealing with debtors, enabling you to send out the right message and retain the goodwill of your customers.
Our experienced lawyers can assist you with recovering both disputed and undisputed debts.
We can recover undisputed debts quickly, efficiently and cost-effectively, with transparent fixed fees. We provide a range of costs which you can access by clicking on the link below. For more information about how we can help please contact a member of our team below for a no-obligation discussion.
Our Debt Recovery Team can help with:
- Credit control advice
- Assist with Information gathering to confirm the identity, location and financial status of the debtor
- Letters before action and, where appropriate, a “letter only” service
- The issue and service of court proceedings
- Entering default judgments
- Enforcement of judgments, using the most appropriate means
- Bankruptcy and winding up proceedings
Undisputed Debt Recovery
When a payment is late this can cause significant disruption to your business. We can offer a dedicated service to assist you in recovering sums due to you. We may charge more than other service providers who offer bulk debt recovery services but we can offer you a more personalised service and, importantly, we still charge less than other large (or even smaller) firms in the local area.
We would like to support you in the credit control operation in your business and work closely with you. By sending one of our Letter of Claim to your debtor you are formalising the approach and we will support you with sound commercial advice throughout. We work on a fixed fee structure where possible for standard undefended cases. On all other matters we charge on a time spent basis.
What we need from you to start the process:
- Debtors details including trading style e.g Sole Trader, Partnership, Limited
- Company etc. Proof of the contractual arrangement which caused the debt to occur;
- Proof of the debt, any invoices raised, the date payment was due and any part payments that have been made payment terms; and
- Any correspondence already with the debtor.
If we need to trace the debtor or their assets this will need to be considered separately.
If you have not agreed a payment date as part of the payment terms, the Late Payment of Commercial Debts (Interest) Act 1998 states the payment is late 30 days after either:
- the customer gets the invoice
- you deliver the goods or provide the service (if this is later).
Stage one: Letter of Claim
The following table provides you with our costs of the initial debt recovery Letter of Claim:
Level of Debt Mezzle fee (£) Plus VAT* Less than £1,000 80.00 £1,000 to less than £10,000 140.00 £10,000 and over 200.00
*Letter before action charge is not recoverable from your debtor.
Other Pre-action correspondence will be considered separately at our standard hourly rates.
Where the Letter of Claim goes without response, we would then look to issue Court proceedings on your behalf. The costs of us doing this is as follows.
Debt Court Fee (£) (Generally Recoverable) Mezzle fee (£) Plus VAT Recoverable fixed costs (£) Up to £300 35.00 250.00 50.00 £300.01 – £500 50.00 300.00 50.00 £500.01 – £1,000 70.00 350.00 70.00 £1,000.01 – £1,500 80.00 400.00 80.00 £1,500.01 – £3,000 115.00 450.00 80.00 £3,000.01 – £5,000 205.00 500.00 100.00 £5,000.01 – £10,000 455.00 550.00 100.00 £10,000.01 – £200,000 5% of claim Hourly rates TBC 100.00 Greater than £200,000 10,000.00 Hourly rates TBC 100.00
Anyone wishing to proceed with a claim should note that interest and compensation may take the debt into a higher banding with a higher cost.
Once the Court has served the claim, a debtor has 14 days in which to file a defence or enter an acknowledgement. After the 14-day period has expired (assuming an Acknowledgment and Defence was not filed) a request can be made to the Court for judgment to be entered.
Request for Judgment
Assuming there is not a hearing and the matter remains undisputed, the following costs will apply to making a request for judgment.
Judgment Position Mezzle Fee (£) plus VAT Recoverable fixed costs (£) Default Judgment for a claim under £5,000 50.00 22.00 Default Judgment for a claim over £5,000 60.00 30.00 Requesting Judgment on admission of a claim under £5,000 and the Defendant’s offer of payment is accepted 80.00 40.00 Requesting Judgment on admission of a claim over £5,000 and the Defendant’s offer of payment is accepted 110.00 55.00 Requesting Judgment on admission of a claim under £5,000 and the Court decides on the amount of payment 110.00 55.00 Requesting Judgment on admission of a claim over £5,000 and the Court decides on the amount of payment 140.00 70.00
Please note that the charges above do not include attendances at Court, where this is necessary this is charged on an hourly basis.
If judgment is obtained but not paid then further action will be required to enforce payment. The costs involved in this will be considered separately as they will vary depending on the method of enforcement available in each case.
If the claim is disputed, then it will need to move onto our hourly rates charges as we will need to investigate the defence with you and potentially deal with defended pleadings. Our standard hourly rate is £250 plus VAT. We will provide you with our best estimate of the costs and chance of success to take the matter to Court and you will then be able to decide whether the potential success and return of the debt justifies the expense.