Debt Recovery Pricing
Thank you for looking at our Debt Recovery services. Debts can arise in all walks of life and we regularly advise and assist businesses and individuals alike.
The bulk of our debt recovery instructions come from businesses across various sectors. With many years of experience and strong expertise in litigation both in and out of court, our debt recovery service is fast, efficient and economical.
This page covers our pricing for recovery of debts that arise from undisputed invoices payable by a company or individual that is resident in England and Wales and where documents can be served on them by post. Please get in touch to find out more about our fee structure for pursuing other debts (such as disputed debts).
Why You Should Entrust your Debt Recovery to Longmores
We believe that our scheme is the best of its kind. Here’s why:
Clear and Fixed Charges
As long as your case remains on our fixed fee debt recovery scheme, there will be no hidden charges – everything will be charged in line with the table attached. Even if your case falls outside the scheme, we will not charge you anything unless and until we have an alternative fee arrangement in place.
A Professional Service
We pride ourselves on exceptional customer care skills enabling you to send out the right message and retain the goodwill of your customers whilst recovering outstanding payments.
We are not a firm of debt collectors. We are solicitors with more than 200 years’ experience working for local businesses and individuals. We are proud to hold Lexcel Accreditation, issued by the Law Society. This involves the firm undergoing a rigorous audit process which ensures we maintain high levels of client care.
We will always give you unbiased and commercial advice, supervised by the experienced solicitors in our team. Our scheme is only part of the services we offer; we can also help you with disputed debts or can advise on your procedures or terms and conditions to help avoid problems in future.
Efficient and Value Driven
Having to resort to debt recovery is always unwelcome. We work hard to ensure that we offer the best possible value to your business, so our prices start at only £25 (plus VAT). If your business has many debts, we can work together with you to set up bespoke arrangements.
A Complete Solution
We don’t stop when we get a judgment from the court, nor do we insist that you follow our scheme from the start. Our aim is to get you paid, so where necessary we offer a full range of options to enforce judgments, including insolvency proceedings. We can start work as soon as a debt problem arises, or we can help you at a later stage if you have taken some steps yourself.
We can offer you clear, practical advice and will discuss all the options available to establish the most appropriate way of dealing with debtors. We have tried and tested processes in place to ensure we can recover undisputed debts quickly, efficiently and cost-effectively, with transparent fixed fees.
The Debt Recovery Process
Before Court Proceedings (Letter Before Action)
The first stage in any case is for us to send a letter to the debtor demanding payment – known as a letter before action or LBA. Many debtors pay up at this stage, and we add interest and any fees you are entitled to charge the debtor, so you may even get back more than the original debt.
Considering your Options
If the debtor doesn’t pay in full, you need to consider your next steps. The obvious option is to bring court proceedings, but that isn’t necessarily the right step. You may be concerned the debt is not worth pursuing, in which case one of our investigation reports may be worth considering. In some cases, starting insolvency proceedings immediately could be a better option. Our LBAs are compliant with the court’s pre-action protocols, so we can move straight to court proceedings if you want to do so.
Starting Court Proceedings
If you do decide to start court proceedings, we will draft the proceedings and issue them for you. Normally, the court will serve them on the Defendant. The court proceedings will set out brief details of your claim, and will seek interest, costs and any other sums you are entitled to.
The debtor will have 14 days to respond to the court proceedings once they are served, although this can be extended in some circumstances. Unless the debtor defends or pays the debt, we can obtain judgment against them at this point. Most judgments are outright, though debtors can in some circumstances put forward proposals to the court to pay the judgement over time.
If the judgment is not paid within one month, this may have a serious effect on the debtor’s credit rating, so many debts are paid after judgment. However, there are a number of ways you can enforce your judgment. If we obtain a judgment, we will discuss with you the options that are available to you to enforce that judgement and the cost of each option, so you can make the best choice.
If an individual owes you more than £5,000, or a company owes you more than £750, you can start insolvency proceedings instead of bringing a claim for the debt. If the debtor is made insolvent, you will have to share the proceeds with their other creditors, though your costs are paid as a priority, which means it won’t be the right solution for every creditor in every case. But successful insolvency proceedings have a drastic effect on debtors and so they can be a great way to sort those who just won’t pay from those who genuinely can’t pay. Insolvency proceedings can also be brought later if you have an unpaid judgment.
You will find below our fixed fee pricing for recovery of debts that arise from undisputed invoices payable by a company or individual that is resident in England and Wales. If during the debt recovery process, the matter becomes disputed through any form of response from the Defendant (including a request for more time to pay) we will discuss the change in fees with you and agree a way forward.
You will be able to recover some but not all of our charges to you as part of any default judgment.
Letter Before Action (LBA)
We charge £25 plus VAT for an LBA regardless of the size of the debt.
Starting Court Proceeding
Our fees are fixed based on the value of the debt including interest and any other permissible charge.
|Debt Value||Court Fee||Our Fee (excl. VAT)||Total Fee (excl. VAT)|
|Less than £300||£35||£40||£75|
|£10,000-£100,000||5% of claim value||£100||£600-£10,100|
|£100,000 to £200,000||£500||£10,500|
|Over £200,000||£10,000||Price on Application – please call us.|
Taking Default Judgment
|Amount||Total Cost (excl. VAT)|
|Up to £500||£40|
|£500 to £1,000||£75|
|£1,000 to £5,000||£180|
|£5,000 to £50,000||£300|
A variety of options are available to you to enforce your judgment if the debtor does not pay the judgment right away. We will discuss with you which option is most appropriate for you and the cost.
We offer the fixed fees below for the services set out there and in respect of debts or judgment of less than £100,000. For larger debts or judgments, please call us to discuss our fees.
|Method||Court Fee||Other Costs (excl. VAT)||Our Fee (excl. VAT)||Total (excl.VAT)|
|Statutory Demand (individuals, though you can use for companies)||none||£150 to serve||£200||£350|
|£280||£150 to serve|
£990 Official Receiver Deposit
|£280||£150 to serve|
£90 advert fee
£1,600 Official Receiver Deposit
How Long Does the Process Take?
We try to provide a quick turnaround, but many of the processes set out above are in the hands of the courts and can vary from court to court across the country. Our estimate of the time typically required for the steps outlined in the scheme, from receipt of instructions unless otherwise indicated, is as follows:
|Receiving response to LBA||10 days (company), one month (individuals)|
|Issuing and serving proceedings||14 days|
|Applying for judgment||14 days from service, 28 if debtor files acknowledgment of service|
|Obtaining judgment from court||14 days|
|Drafting and serving statutory demand||14 days|
|Compliance with statutory demand from service||21 days|
|Obtaining bankruptcy/winding up hearing||10 weeks|
|Completing enforcement action involving warrant, writ or attachment of earnings||5 weeks|
|Completing other enforcement action||10 weeks|
The “fine print”
Please carefully note the following important information:
- Obtaining a court judgment against a debtor or making them insolvent does not mean that your debtor has the means to pay the debt. That will depend on their individual financial circumstances. We may be able to carry out some searches that are indicative of the ability of your debtor to pay you. We may be able to instruct third parties to carry out more comprehensive enquiries. If this is an issue of concern for you please discuss it with us at the earliest opportunity.
- The rules of this scheme take precedence over our standard terms of business and usual client care agreement, but otherwise those terms also apply.
- We reserve the right to change our fees at any time. Court fees, Official Receiver Deposits and other disbursements we may have to incur in your case are outside of our control and liable to change. If the amounts of those increase, we will need you to pay the higher amount. Similarly, the threshold debt required to commence insolvency or bankruptcy proceedings may change.
- The fixed price for bankruptcy and winding-up petitions includes one hearing only. Any supplemental hearing will be charged at £200. More than one supplemental hearing would be exceptional.
- VAT is not included in any of the amounts set out above, as most businesses can recover VAT. Court fees and Official Receiver Deposits are not subject to VAT. VAT is payable on our fees and any other costs set out.
- Fees for LBAs and options are payable in advance. The fee for obtaining judgment is only payable if and when judgment is granted by the court. For all other costs, half of the total is payable in advance, half after approval of the documents, application or proceedings in question but before they are issued at court.
- The scheme is only for undisputed debts. Disputed debts need to be dealt with on a case by case basis, to maximise your chances of success. If a dispute arises at any stage, the case will come off the scheme. We will inform you and will put forward a bespoke proposal for that case, on a no-obligation basis, so you can decide how you wish to proceed.
- The scheme is designed for invoice debts. At our discretion, we may allow simple debt claims that do not arise from invoices to be included in the scheme.
- To ensure our prices can be kept as low as possible, the day to day work on the scheme may be carried out by junior members of staff. The advice we provide, and any instructions you give us, will only be what is necessary for the purpose of taking the steps set out in the scheme. We provide standard forms for you to confirm your instructions at various stages of the case and may require you to restrict your instructions to such standard forms.
- As regulated professionals, we must act in accordance with our professional duties at all times. While it is rare that we would do so, we reserve the right to decline instructions.