Debt Recovery – Nowhere to Hide
In this blog, Alan Mattocks of our Litigation Department, shares a few Debt Recovery tricks of the trade.
According to The Money Charity, people in the UK owed £1.537 trillion at the end of May 2017. Based on May 2017 trends, the UK's total interest repayments on personal debt over a 12 month period would have been £50.002 billion. That's an average of £137 million per day.
At Band Hatton Button, the debts we chase aren't quite of these levels, but we do certainly get involved in some interesting cases and these days we are using an increasing number of creative means to track down debtors.
We find ourselves using all manner of sources to find people and recover client's monies, including, extensively, the use of social media. Indeed, some of our latest successes have included finding debtors via Facebook and looking for people's places of work via Google and LinkedIn!
Here we share some of our tricks of the trade...
- In one recent case we successfully tracked a debtor down via Google. A Judgment was obtained after a court summons was issued. The defendant failed to make any offer of payment and therefore a tracing agent was employed to locate the defendant's employer. The employers' details were provided and following a check on Google it was confirmed that the defendant was employed as stated by the agent. An Attachment of Earnings Order was submitted and as a result an order for payments direct from the employer will shortly be made.
- We were also instructed to recover fees of £4,000 under a court Judgment. Our client believed that the debtor may be a nurse and via Facebook we discovered that the debtor's profession had been posted as part of their profile. An Attachment of Earnings application was submitted and the debtor was confirmed as working for the NHS. An offer to pay by monthly payments has now been received.
- Finally, we were instructed regarding a commercial debt of £330,000 owed by a large construction company. As there was no apparent dispute the client was advised to serve a Statutory Demand under the Insolvency Act without the need to first issue court proceedings. Fearing the adverse publicity and reputational damage of insolvency proceedings the debtor settled the claim in full with interest.
In many instances, we find that the debtor will settle the debt on receipt of a letter before action. This is relatively cost effective as depending on the size of the debt our initial fee would average just £100.
Recovering debts needn't be a baffling and expensive experience. Speak to our Debt Recovery Team to discuss the best way of recovering monies owed to you.