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Jo C.
Jo C., Barrister
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 70188
Experience:  Over 5 years in practice
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A UK company I employed to do building work has gone into receivership.

Resolved Question:

A UK company I employed to do building work has gone into receivership. The receiver has appointed a Debt collection agency to 'collect' money I supposedly owe? In fact I feel I should be a Creditor. When I queried this I was told it was my responsibility to prove I DO NOT owe money. My understanding from other sources is it is the responsibility of the former company/the receiver to prove I owe any monies.
Which is correct
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Jo C. replied 2 years ago.
Hi.
Thank you for your question. My name is ***** ***** I will try to help with this.
I presume there is no CCJ against you?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

Hi

no CCJ at all.

This 'reputable' company did building work which it did not finish. It simply then 'disappeared'. I only eventually found they were in receivership when contacted by a debt collector stating we owned £15k + collection charges.

THIS IS NOT CORRECT and I contacted the Official receiver who stated it is not possible to talk to him. We have to make all contact via the Debt collector as his appointed agent and having disputed the monies owed the onus is IN LAW on ourselves to prove we do not owe the money.

I have been told by other parties that the onus is on the company to prove I do in fact owe moneys

Who is correct please?

We do not owe the sum and we dispute the claim totally. We also have evidence that says the builder did not complete works in a safe manner or to a satisfactory finish. We would like to make a claim as a Creditor but this is effectively being dismissed by the Receiver as not possible as we have a debt.. So says the company..

Expert:  Jo C. replied 2 years ago.
In cases like this, the best form of defence is attack.
I would write back to them and thank them for writing to you. Tell them that if they do issue proceedings against you, not only will you defend them you will counterclaim for £X in respect of A, B and C which they failed to do properly. It is most unlikely that they will litigate this matter if they think that you are going to defend the action never mind counterclaim. The reason they will not is that the receiver will not risk money on anything but a certain bet. I cannot guarantee they will not issue proceedings but from what you have said with regard to the quality of the work and your potential counterclaim, I think it most unlikely.
You are correct, the presumption is that you don't owe anything unless they can prove that you do.
Can I clarify anything for you?
Jo
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

Apologies for the delay I was out the office. Can I ask where we stand with the Debt Collection company because it concerns me that these people are even involved and that the Receiver feels they are a suitable body to deal with this matter.?

Is there a way we can force them to put us on the Creditors list too?

Expert:  Jo C. replied 2 years ago.
With regard to the alleged debt although unless they have bought the debt, they are not allowed to issue proceedings on behalf of anyone else because they are not solicitors.
If proceedings are issued you will then be dealing either with the liquidator, the debt collection company if they have bought the debt, or solicitors.
Debt collection company is generally unemployed to send letters out to frighten people because they are cheaper than solicitors!
You only become a creditor if there is a non-disputed debt or you bring a counterclaim which is successful. Then you can as the liquidator to put you on the list of creditors.
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