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Alex J.
Alex J., Solicitor
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 3495
Experience:  Solicitors 2 years plus PQE
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Is the following problem best dealt with by way of the Small

Customer Question

is the following problem best dealt with by way of the Small Claims Court or a Statutory Demand?
1. I jointly own a BVI Company which is recognised in the UK for tax purposes and its sole asset is a Freehold building, (No.40), in SW1, primarily used as offices, (4 tenants) + a maisonette.
2. My business partner and I started as a partnership, but in the 80's, because our specialities had changed so much, we set up totally independent companies, but trading from the same building.
3. In 2010 I took over the management of No40 from my business partner, and new rents were agreed but no new leases were produced for the 2 companies which were companies of myself and my starting partner.
4. On or around 1/1/16 my starting partner transferred his 100% shareholding in his Co to his son, and he resigned as a director, leaving his son as sole director of that Co.
5. This Company occupy some 640sq.ft. and whilst rent, rates, S.C. (to incl utilities) payemnts were erratic, they were made until 31/12/15. However, the Co. has not paid this year and now owes £9,250 (7 months at £15,850p.a.) , + £6,000 rates and £4,000 S.C.
6. So the total owed is c £19,250 and increasing daily.
I look forward to hearing from you.
Kind regards *****
Submitted: 4 months ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Alex J. replied 4 months ago.

Hi. Thank you for your question and welcome. My name is ***** ***** I will assist you. On the basis that the debt is not disputed and you have a clear contractual obligation that triggers payment of the money - a statutory demand is the most cost effective way to go. It will put the debtor under pressure as if they do not pay you will be able to commence insolvency proceedings against them after 21 days. The down side is a stat demand without a judgment can be potentially set aside if disputed.

Court action will be more time consuming and expensive but you have the added advantage of more enforcement options for example sending in court appointed bailiffs - assuming you successfully obtain a Judgment.

Is the debt likely to be disputed?

Kind regards AJ

Customer: replied 4 months ago.
Hi AJ
A " clear contractual obligation" is my only concern. I have outlined the position in my question, i.e. there is no current lease, or any formal documentation.
Nevertheless, I have no quarrel with my original partners son; I believe that it is his father who has fallen out with me in a serious way (nobody is quite sure why, but we are in our late 60's!!!) and it is his father who is causing all the problems.Regards Terry
Expert:  Alex J. replied 4 months ago.

Hi, Thank you. Have you sent them an invoice for monies owed? Have they been occupying the property? Kind regards AJ

Customer: replied 4 months ago.
re amounts owed and yes the Company have been in occupation of the premises since the 80's altho they have added and detracted a room or two over the yrs depending on the economy.Rent has remained the same since 2010, but rates and S.C. reflect actual cost, and rates have increased but S.C very little.You can phone me on(###) ###-####7967 if you like. I had problems getting through online initially and it seemed that I paid £56 before I complained and I then got your response, which seemed to say your charge was £32!!
Expert:  Alex J. replied 4 months ago.

Hi, Thank you. I am sorry you have had some difficulties accessing the site - if there has been a problem with charging I will refer this to the site administrators to look into. I am afraid I am not available for a call at the moment, but can continue with this thread?

If you have invoiced for the monies, and they have occupied the property, and you notified them of all charges then the debt cannot be disputed. A statutory demand is a means of putting them under enormous pressure because the end result after 21 days is the basis on which you can commence insolvency proceedings. A statutory demand is free to use, so if you think it will put them under pressure this may be a good way to start if you can afford to wait another 21 days?

If the stat demand is set aside (the threshold for set aside is fairly low) then you can always then consider seeking a court judgment.

Is the company currently suffering solvency issues? Kind regards AJ

Expert:  Alex J. replied 4 months ago.

Hi, Thank you. I am sorry you have had some difficulties accessing the site - if there has been a problem with charging I will refer this to the site administrators to look into. I am afraid I am not available for a call at the moment, but can continue with this thread?

If you have invoiced for the monies, and they have occupied the property, and you notified them of all charges then the debt cannot be disputed. A statutory demand is a means of putting them under enormous pressure because the end result after 21 days is the basis on which you can commence insolvency proceedings. A statutory demand is free to use, so if you think it will put them under pressure this may be a good way to start if you can afford to wait another 21 days?

If the stat demand is set aside (the threshold for set aside is fairly low) then you can always then consider seeking a court judgment.

Is the company currently suffering solvency issues? Kind regards AJ

Customer: replied 4 months ago.
Ok , I can afford to wait and I do not think the Co has insolvency problems.
Presumably I can get the necessary forms online and these are relatively straight forward to complete? If so I think we are done for the moment but I would appreciate you sorting out the charging before you sign off
Thanks Terry
Expert:  Alex J. replied 4 months ago.

Hi thank you. You can find the statutory demand documents here

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

I will refer this to the site administrators. Kind regards AJ Any feedback on my answer is gratefully received.

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