In the interests of transparency, this pricing guide aims to provide you with some practical guidance on our estimated fees for helping you to secure payment of an undisputed business debt owed to you up to the value of £100,000.
We will always be happy to discuss what work is likely to be involved when dealing with your matter and provide you with a bespoke estimate.
Our fees are based on an hourly charge out rate of £300 (plus VAT at 20%) and are calculated by reference to the amount of time spent by us working on your matter.
Debt recovery work can vary greatly in complexity. Our service is bespoke and will be tailored to your needs and type of debt to be recovered. As all matters are different and costs vary from case to case, please contact us to discuss your matter so we can provide you with an individual estimate.
Our estimated range of fees associated with the work set out below, under the heading “What is included?”, are from £1,500 to £3,500 (plus VAT at 20%), depending on the complexity of the matter.
You may be able to recover some of your costs, but are unlikely to recover them all and may not be able to recover the VAT element.
The fees set out above cover all of the work in relation to the following key stages of a claim:
• Taking your initial instructions and reviewing documents relevant to your matter
• Conducting any relevant searches
• Preparing and sending a letter of claim to the debtor requesting payment of the debt
• If the debt is unpaid following the letter of claim, drafting the claim form outlining your case and submitting it to the court
• If necessary, instructing a barrister on your behalf to prepare separate particulars of claim (a court document setting out the detailed factual and legal basis of your claim) and then serving that document on the debtor
• Where no acknowledgment of service or defence is received, applying to the court to enter judgment in default
• When judgment in default is obtained, writing to the debtor to request payment
• If payment is not received promptly, providing you with advice on next steps and likely costs.
The fees set out above would not include the following:
• Any claim where the debtor is domiciled in a foreign jurisdiction
• Considering and dealing with any defence to your claim or any counterclaim
• Any negotiation, meeting or formal means of alternative dispute resolution such as mediation
• Any application made by the debtor to the court
• Enforcing any judgment awarded by the court
• Any insolvency process against the debtor, such as any winding up proceedings.
If the debtor disputes your claim at any point, we will discuss any further work required and provide you with revised advice about costs if necessary.
Factors that could make a case more complex and therefore affect the amount of our fees:
• The debt having been assigned or factored
• Difficulties in locating or serving the debtor
• The legal or factual basis for the debt being complicated or unclear
• A barrister is required to draft particulars of claim.
In addition to our fees in relation to acting for you, there may be expenses that are payable to third parties we incur on your behalf. These third-party expenses are also known as “disbursements”. You are responsible for these expenses, though we would usually handle their payment for you to ensure a smoother process and add these costs to your invoice.
The following are examples of the kinds of expenses that may be incurred:
Court fees for starting a claim. If a court claim is started, a court fee is payable. For claims up to £100,000, these range from £35 to £5,000, depending on the value of the claim and are exempt from VAT. Further information about court fees and the exact amount payable can be viewed on the Courts and Tribunals Service website.
Barrister’s fees. If your matter is complex, we may recommend instructing a barrister to advise and draft particulars of claim. An indicative range of costs, based on instructing a junior counsel, would be £800 (plus VAT at 20%) to £2,500 (plus VAT at 20%) depending on their level of experience.
Your matter will be handled by the firm’s Principal, Richard Shears, a Solicitor Advocate with over fourteen years’ post-qualification experience.
Specialising in business debt recovery as well as commercial and employment-related disputes, Richard offers a practical and user friendly service to a wide variety of clients across many industries, from owner managed businesses to multi-national organisations.
Likely timescales will be influenced by the approach taken by the debtor, whether court proceedings are necessary, how quickly the court processes your claim and the debtor’s ability to pay.
By way of guidance, if court proceedings are not necessary, matters typically take between two to six weeks to resolve.
Should it become necessary to start court proceedings, matters typically take about six to twelve weeks to resolve. If enforcement action is needed or the debt is disputed, the matter will take much longer to resolve.
We will of course be able to give you a more accurate timescale once we have considered your case and as your matter progresses.