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JimLawyer
JimLawyer, Solicitor
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Experience:  Senior Associate Solicitor
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I’m a builder and i finished working for a contractor 3

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Hi, I’m a builder and i finished working for a contractor 3 months ago. He owes me around £9000 before tax that he takes out at source, the final payment to me will be around £7200. He’s been promising to pay for the last 3 months but I feel I am being fobbed off. What do you recommend I do, thank you
Assistant: Where are you? It matters because laws vary by location.
Customer: Lincolnshire
Assistant: What steps have you taken so far?
Customer: I’ve continued to accept his promises of payment. I’ve informed him I will take legal action and if expect bailiffs would appear to collect the value of the debt. He says if I do that he’ll declare bankruptcy and that that would mean I wouldn’t be entitled to anything. I’m not convinced that’s true, what are your thoughts on it please?
Assistant: Anything else you want the Lawyer to know before I connect you?
Customer: only that he’s been promising for several months now with various solutions as to how he’s going to pay and also he owes money to several other parties too

Hello, my name is Jim and I am a qualified lawyer happy to help you this afternoon.

You should send him a letter before action - if he is operating as a limited company he cannot dissolve it whilst court proceedings are active (if you sued him). There are a number of enforcement methods at your disposal once you win the claim against him and get the CCJ (the county court judgment).

So, I would recommend that you send them a formal letter before action to demand payment within 14 days and say that if they do not pay you, you will issue county court proceedings against them. See attached template as an example of what to say. Please let me know if you cannot see the letter which I have uploaded. You will need to tailor this letter to your situation.

You will need to register at http://www.moneyclaim.gov.uk so that you are ready to issue the claim in the event they dispute the claim and do not pay you. The website is very user-friendly and you would not need a lawyer to use the money claim site. Claims with a value of under £10,000 are classed as a "small claim", so legal costs are not recoverable and the matter may be dealt with on paper by a Judge, not at a hearing. A hearing may be necessary if the court thinks that oral evidence is required to dispose of the case.

You would claim the sum for the loss, the court issue fee of £410 (based on a claim for £7200) and court interest which is 8% calculated on a daily rate from the date of loss to date of court judgment. The site allows you to calculate the interest and add it to the claim.

If you win then once you have the CCJ from the court the defendant has 14 days to pay in full. If they do not then it gets registered with the credit agencies after 30 days. You can also enforce the CCJ with the county court bailiffs or transfer the debt to the High Court for a small additional fee assuming the total amount owed is at least £600 and you can use the high court enforcement officers who have greater powers than county court bailiffs. The transfer fee is added on to the debt and payable by the defendant.

There are other enforcement methods which I can help with, including bank account freeze, charging order on their property (and then apply to force a sale), application to wind up the company if he is operating as a limited company, apply to summons them to court for questioning, attachment of earnings order against his employer (if he is employed) - all of which can ensure you are actually repaid the money.

You may find they just pay you after receiving the letter before action – hopefully they will want to avoid litigation.

I hope this helps - if you can please accept the answer and give me a 5 star rating (there should be a button at the top of your screen to do this), I can answer follow up Q&A's at no extra charge and Just Answer will credit me for helping you today.

Many thanks,

Jim

JimLawyer and 2 other Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 12 days ago.
Thank you Jim, your help is much appreciated. I’ll send the letter, hopefully that might motivate him, I’ll keep you posted, thank again, Tony

No problem, - come back here if you need further help. You may find he does just pay up. If he doesn't then I can help further.

Have a good evening.

Customer: replied 12 days ago.
You too