Legal experts in debt recovery and support
At KLS Law, we understand that for anyone suffering financial hardship, facing insolvency or bankruptcy, this is a sensitive and concerning time.
With over 25 years of experience offering advice and support to businesses, we recognise that behind every business are individuals who have spent significant time and effort investing heavily in their business.
We are experienced and highly adept in ensuring the best possible outcome from your situation.
KLS Law offers confidential advice and support to clarify your options and guide you through the process you choose, ensuring the impact to you and your family is kept to an absolute minimum.
We will talk you through all the options available to you in detail and answer any questions you may have, including bankruptcy and various alternative solutions to insolvency.
For SMEs and Traders facing debt challenges, the impact of business decisions can be life-changing, and so it is critical to seek legal advice from experienced professionals before these decisions are made.
Areas of debt management we specialise in:
- Managing debts owed to you or your business
- Dealing with your banks
- Individual Voluntary Agreements and negotiating best terms
- Advice regarding the effect of personal guarantees
- Advice regarding your personal pension or SIPP
- Insolvency and Liquidation
- Statutory notices and personal bankruptcy
- Managing litigation
- Negotiating with creditors
- Mediation and alternative dispute resolution specialists
Is your particular issue not addressed in the above? Do not worry, if it is debt related, we can help.
We find there are many questions that arise from business owners and decision-makers during times of financial hardship, and many that are not asked but should be.
All your debt queries, answered:
- What is the effect of a floating charge over my business asset?
- What assets can be included within a bankruptcy order?
- What about my pension?
- What about my SIPP (Self Invested Personal Pension)?
- What about my spouse or partner's interest in our property?
- What about other property my family and I have in trust?
- What rate of interest and charges can the bank justify?
- What is an IVA (Individual Voluntary Agreement)?
- What is a DRO (Debt Relief Order)?
- What is a Statutory Demand and if I have been served with one what must I do?
- Are there special rules which apply to procedure for service?
- Should I make myself bankrupt and if I do when can I start again?
- Can I buy back the assets of my business and how would I go about doing that?
- If there is a judgement obtained against me, how can I stop enforcement proceedings taking place?
- Can I recover legal costs?
- What does “walking possession” mean against an asset I own?
- What is the consequence of an Attachment of Earnings Order and are there ways I can reduce what I am being ordered to be paid?
- If there is a charging order on my property can I avoid a sale?
- Can I invoke the protection of force majeure to avoid liabilities?
We can help answer all these questions and more, simply get in touch with us to book a consultation.
Debt Recovery Claims
One of the most prominent concerns for any Sole Trader, Partnership or Limited Company when operating a business is whether or not all debts will be properly satisfied and promptly paid.
Here at KLS Law, we understand that some people; whether they be customers, purchasers or other businesses, do not always make good on the promises to pay what you are owed.
Our team of experienced, empathetic and diligent litigators are here to offer advice and assistance to anyone who is struggling to obtain debts they are owed.
The four stages of recovering a debt
1. Pre-Solicitor Involvement
Although it may not seem like it, your case for recovering a debt begins before solicitors are involved. Your case begins when your debtor owes you money which they have not paid by the agreed date.
Once the debt becomes overdue, it is best to write to the debtor setting out:
- How much is currently owed
- What re-payment plan you would be agreeable to (bearing in mind the debtor’s financial position)
- That you are considering taking legal action against them
If the debtor does not provide a reasonable, or any, response to this letter, then seeking legal advice is the next best stage.
2. Letter Before Action
After you have contacted us and discussed your matter, we will send a Letter Before Action (LBA) to the debtor.
The LBA will inform the debtor that if they fail to pay the debt in full, or fail to provide a reasonable re-payment plan by a specified deadline, then we shall issue court proceedings.
3. Court Proceedings
Should the debt still be outstanding and no sensible means of paying the debt has been put forward, we will draft and issue the Claim Form and send it to the Court, where your claim will be issued and served on the debtor.
The debtor will have 14 days to respond following deemed receipt of the Claim Form. A debtor will commonly do one of the following:
- Admit the debt and pay in full. If this is done, we can close our file and our costs will be limited up to this point.
- Admit the debt and offer to pay in instalments. If the proposal is acceptable, we would look to confirm this in a court order. If it is not however, then the matter would proceed to a hearing. In these types of situations we will endeavour to give you the most pertinent advice to your particular situation.
- File an Acknowledgment of Service. This would give the debtor a further 14 days to respond to the Claim Form.
- Fully defend the claim. This is likely to happen if the debtor does not agree with the debt in question. Here we would look to either obtain an appropriate out-of-court settlement or proceed to full hearing, depending on the facts of the case.
- Defend the claim and make a counter claim. This might be the case where you and the debtor frequently trade with each other, and upon receipt of the Claim Form, the debtor believes that you may:
- Owe the debtor money from previous invoices.
- There was a defect with the good or service you provided to them, which is why they are refusing to pay the debt in question
- Do nothing. If the debtor does not respond to the Claim Form, we will apply for a Judgment in Default.
4. Enforcing the Court Order
If we are successful and obtain a Court Order confirming the debtor owes the amount claimed, the following remedies are available to you:
- Using a County Court Bailiff or High Court Enforcement Officer. These bailiffs would attend the debtor’s property to demand payment of the debt in full, failing which they will seize assets to be sold to cover the debt.
- Third Party Debt Order. If you are aware of the debtor’s bank account details, it may be possible to recover the debt directly from the debtor’s bank.
- Attachment of earnings. This will enable you to be paid the debt directly from the debtor’s employer.
- Statutory demand. Depending on who the debtor is and the amount of the debt, this demand states that if the debtor does not pay the money you are owed under the judgment then you will issue bankruptcy proceedings.
- Order to obtain information from a debtor. This order will compel the debtor to attend court to answer questions and provide information on their finances.
Upon receipt of a County Court Judgment (CCJ), a debtor may very well take measures to prevent enforcement from taking place. For example, they may:
- Request that the CCJ be set aside or varied
- Appeal the CCJ
- Make an application to defend any of the above named methods of enforcement
Should any of these incidents occur, our team will be here to assist you in every way we can.
Fast, reliable advice for your unique situation
Each and every company and individual have their own particular set of issues and our advice is based on the “complete picture.”
You may already be facing statutory demands or proceedings and, in order to preserve your position, you will need to move swiftly.
We will offer a fixed fee of £500 + VAT for up to 3 hours legal advice and to obtain an overview of your position and advise you. Further details of our charges for assisting after our initial meeting are detailed on our rates page.
For an early appointment, please call 0800 015 1470 or complete the call back form below.