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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 48741
Experience:  Qualified Solicitor - Please start your question with 'For Ben Jones'
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Hi I am owed a large amount by a client and they have offered

Customer Question

Hi I am owed a large amount by a client and they have offered to pay half what is owed in full and final settlement,
I have signed terms and conditions from the client in question
What are my best steps to recover this debt ?
thank you
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 3 years ago.

Ben Jones :

Hello, my name is XXXXX XXXXX it is my pleasure to assist you with your question today.

Ben Jones :

How much is owed?

Customer:

Hi Ben

Customer:

76k + vat

Ben Jones :

So you wish to reject their offer and pursue them for the full amount?

Customer:

yes

Customer:

I have written to them rejecting the offer and that I will not reduce my fee further

Ben Jones :

Are they in a position to pay, do they have any financial issues?

Customer:

yes have about a million in their current account as sent me a bank statement by mistake

Ben Jones :

ok let me get my response ready please

Customer:

thank you

Customer:

just so your aware, I have signed terms and conditions from the client

Customer:

have received 2 payments of 10,000 before christmas as the total is £91,200

Customer:

so £71,000 owed

Ben Jones :

Whenever a dispute arises over money owed by one party to another, the debtor can be pursued through the civil courts for recovery of the debt. As legal action should always be seen as a last resort, there are certain actions that should be taken initially to try and resolve this matter informally and without having to involve the courts. It is recommended that the process follows these steps:


 


1. Reminder letter – if no reminders have been sent yet, one should be sent first to allow the debtor to voluntarily pay what is due.


2. Letter before action – if informal reminders have been sent but these have been ignored, the debtor must be sent a formal letter asking them to repay the debt, or at least make arrangements for its repayment, within a specified period of time. A reasonable period to demand a response by would be 10 days. They should be advised that if they fail to do contact you in order to resolve this matter, formal legal proceedings will be commenced to recover the debt. This letter serves as a ‘final warning’ and gives the other side the opportunity to resolve this matter without the need for legal action.


3. If they fail to pay or at least make contact to try and resolve this, formal legal proceedings can be initiated. A claim can be commenced online by going to www.moneyclaim.gov.uk. Once the claim form is completed it will be sent to the debtor and they will have a limited time to defend it. If they are aware legal proceedings have commenced it could also prompt them to reconsider their position and perhaps force them to contact you to try and resolve this.


 


Whatever correspondence is sent, it is always advisable to keep copies and use recorded delivery so that there is proof of delivery and a paper trail. The court may need to refer to these if it gets that far.


 


What you may try and do instead is to issue a statutory demand:


 


https://www.gov.uk/statutory-demands


 


If the demand remains unsatisfied after the expiry of the deadline, you may petition for the winding up of the company.


 


If you are unsure which way to go you may read more here:


 


http://www.bllaw.co.uk/services_for_businesses/debt_and_asset_recovery/news_and_updates/a_claim_form_statutory_demand.aspx

Customer:

thx it is an individual not a company

Customer:

have already sent numerous reminders and requests for payment via email

Ben Jones :

I see but that will not change anything - you can still sue them and also issue a statutory demand, you will just be petitioning for their bankruptcy instead of trying to wind a company up

Customer:

ah ok

Customer:

how long would the process take if they do not payu

Ben Jones :

the court process?

Customer:

yes, can I get a court order

Ben Jones :

well the whole process will depend on whether the claim is defended or not - if it is then you are likely looking at several months at least, if not then you could obtain judgment in default in a few weeks

Customer:

how do I make an application to go to court and have the case heard so I can enforce the debt via a court order

Customer:

the sheriffs method seems very effective

Ben Jones :

Please see point 3 above

Customer:

ok thx Ben

Ben Jones :

You are most welcome. Please take a second to leave a positive rating for the advice I have provided as that is an important part of our process. Thank you and feel free to bookmark my profile for future help:



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Customer: replied 3 years ago.

yes, very helpful, thx

Expert:  Ben Jones replied 3 years ago.
You are welcome