We are firm of Solicitors based in central London and we specialise in Debt Recovery and Insolvency proceedings.
We have prepared this guide to provide you with a breakdown of the costs and fees associated with the services that we provide at each stage of the recovery process, in line with our commitment to complete transparency.
The services listed below and charged on a fixed fee basis are all in respect of undisputed debts. Should any claim become disputed at any stage, it will fall outside the scope of our fixed fee service.
The fixed costs, court fees and other expenses listed in this document are correct as at the date of publication (5 December 2018) and are subject to change.
Should the services you require not be included within this guide, we ask that you contact us by telephone (020 7467 3999) or by email (firstname.lastname@example.org) to enquire further.
Stage 1 Pre-Action
This initial stage is often referred to as the pre-action stage and is usually the first step in our attempts to recover a debt.
We will first ask that you provide us with documentation in respect of your claim, which would usually be the following:
- Copies of the Contract/Agreement/Terms entered into with the debtor; and
- Copies of the unpaid Invoice(s) issued to the debtor and any Statements.
Upon receipt of these papers, we will draft a Letter Before Claim (LBC) to be sent to the debtor, which will make specific reference to the contract and unpaid invoice(s), whilst demanding the debt be paid in full.
The letter will comply with the Pre-Action Protocol for Debt Claims if the debtor is an individual and will therefore provide a total of 30 days in which the debtor is required to make payment of the debt or reach an agreement for settlement.
If no response has been received following a period of 21 days, we will send a further letter to the debtor reminding them of the deadline in the LBC and the consequences of legal proceedings against them should the debt remain unpaid.
We will also attempt to speak to the debtor – or a representative if the debtor is a company – if we are provided with a contact telephone number. The LBC and follow up letter will also be sent by email if an e-mail address is provided at the date of instruction.
COST: £350 plus VAT (Fixed Fee)
Stage 2 Court Proceedings
If instructed, we will issue a claim against a debtor in the County Court, which may have been following our Stage 1 attempts (above), or following your own correspondence with a debtor directly.
At this stage, we will draft a Claim Form and the accompanying Particulars of Claim, which shall refer to any contract, invoices and correspondence that you have already provided to us.
Once the claim has been issued by the Court, we should receive a Notice of Issue, which will state the date the debtor has to reply (14 days from the deemed date of service). A copy of this Notice will be provided to you and we will contact you to request further instructions following the above deadline, assuming that no Defence or Counterclaim is filed and served by the Defendant.
COSTS: As Per the Table Below (Fixed Fee)
|Total Debt (including interest)||Fixed Fee to issue claim (plus VAT)||Recoverable Costs (plus Court Fee)||Court Fee|
|£25.00 – £300.00||£200.00||£50.00||£35.00|
|£300.01 – £500.00||£250.00||£50.00||£50.00|
|£500.01 – £1,000.00||£300.00||£70.00||£70.00|
|£1,000.01 – £1,500.00||£400.00||£80.00||£80.00|
|£1,500.01 – £3,000.00||£500.00||£80.00||£115.00|
|£3,000.01 – £5,000.00||£600.00||£80.00||£205.00|
|£5,000.01 – £10,000.00||£800.00||£100.00||5% of claimed sum (inc. interest)|
|£10,000.01 – £25,000.00||£850.00||£100.00||5% of claimed sum (inc. interest)|
|£25,000.01 – £50,000.00||£1,000.00||£100.00||5% of claimed sum (inc. interest)|
|£50,000.01 +||£1,200.00||£100.00||5% of claimed sum (inc. interest)*|
|* Court fee of £10,000 for claims over £200,000|
Entering Judgment Fee and Recoverable Costs
In the event that the claim is not disputed, we shall file a Request for Judgment at the Court, for which our fee is £75.00 plus VAT
- However, whilst filing the Request, we shall also claim recoverable costs of either:
- £22.00 (if judgment sum is less than £5,000.00); or
- £30.00 (if judgment sum is more than £5,000.00).
Please note that if your claim is defended, we will not be able to apply for the above and obtain judgment in default.
For details of our charges to act in disputed and defended claims, please see the ‘Additional Work’ section below.
Stage 3 Enforcement
Should you be successful with your claim and obtain judgment against the debtor, they will have been ordered by the Court to make payment of the judgment sum.
However, there are occasions when the judgment debtor does not comply and you may need to enforce the judgment by one of the methods listed below to recover the debt or secure it by way of a Charge.
|Fixed Fee (plus VAT)||Recoverable Costs||Court Fee|
|County Court Bailiff||£ 100.00||£2.25||£ 110.00|
|High Court Enforcement Officer *||£ 175.00||£51.75||£ 66.00|
|Charging Order||£ 300.00||£110.00||£ 110.00|
|Attachment of Earnings Order||£ 250.00||£8.50||£ 110.00|
|Third Party Debt Order||£ 300.00||Fixed Enforcement Costs – £98.50
Agent’s Hearing fee – £75-100
Process Server’s Fee – £75-125
|Order to Obtain Information||£ 200.00||£15 per half hour||£ 55.00|
*Compliance fee of £75 plus VAT is payable to the HCEO if they are unsuccessful in recovering the debt
If the judgment debt is more than £5,000 (for individuals) or £750 (for companies), you can instruct us to commence Bankruptcy/Insolvency proceedings against the debtor.
The table below provides our standard fixed charges for these proceedings, which will include arranging the attendance of an agent for 1 hearing.
Please note that if the debt is paid following service of a Statutory Demand, you may not be entitled to the costs that you have incurred, unless there is a contractual entitlement to recover these.
However, if a Petition is issued and subsequently settled in full, we would seek an Order for your costs to be paid by the debtor. Such an order would be at the discretion of the Court.
If the debtor does not pay following a Statutory Demand or once a Petition has been issued, we would seek that a bankruptcy or winding-up order is made at the hearing. If successful, the petition debt and your costs will be payable out of the insolvent estate, if there are sufficient assets/funds available.
|Fixed Fee (plus VAT)|
|Winding-Up Petitions *||£650|
* Based on only 1 hearing.
* Applications for substituted service, if required, will incur an additional cost of £100.00 plus VAT and a Court fee of £50.00
In addition to our charges above, there are disbursements that you will incur in respect of this service and details of the likely expenses are shown in the tables below:
|For Statutory Demands|
|Process Server’s Fee||£75.00-125.00 plus VAT|
|For Bankruptcy Petitions|
|Official Receiver’s Deposit||£990.00|
|Process Server’s Fee (per document)||£75.00-150.00 plus VAT|
|Agent’s Fee (per hearing)||£75.00-125.00 plus VAT|
|Bankruptcy Search Fee||£11|
|For Winding-Up Petitions|
|Official Receiver’s Deposit||£1,600.00|
|Process Server’s Fee (per document)||£75.00-150.00 plus VAT|
|Counsel’s Fee (per hearing)||£75.00-250.00 plus VAT|
|Bankruptcy Search Fee||£11|
The fixed fees provided for each of the above services will only include the work as stated and do not include any
additional work that we are instructed or required to undertake on your behalf.
Please note that our fixed fee services do not include the following list of additional services:
- Responding to a debtor’s dispute at the pre-legal stage.
- Responding to, or dealing with, any Defence or Counterclaim filed by a debtor – including the drafting/filing witness statements, directions questionnaires, or arranging representation at hearings.
- Partaking in any Alternative Dispute Resolution, such as Mediation (including via Telephone).
- Dealing with any applications made by the debtor, such as to set-aside a judgment.
- Negotiations and protracted correspondence with the debtor or any other third party.
- Monitoring instalment plans, or collecting multiple payments from a debtor.
- Reviewing documentation that you provide, or is provided by the opposing party.
- Providing legal advice to you, including on the merit of your claim and prospects of success.
The above is by no means an exhaustive list, but should we be instructed or required to undertake any of the above, or any work outside the scope of the services you instruct us to assist with, we would charge our time on an hourly basis. Our hourly rates range from £155 – £305 per hour, depending on the qualification and experience of the fee earner required for the service needed.
Should you not wish for us to continue acting on any of your cases, for example if you do not wish to proceed with a defended claim on an hourly basis, we shall cease acting and will retain any fixed fee paid for the service provided, whether in full or in part.
If we are instructed by you to continue acting on a case on an hourly basis, we will require a payment on account of costs and disbursements generally and we shall inform you of the amount required following an assessment of your case. The payment required will depend on multiple factors, most notably the amount of the debt claimed and the complexity and merit of the defence filed.
However, as a guide, we may request a payment of between £500.00 and £1,000.00 on account of costs, to review your claim, the Defence filed and begin complying with any directions set by the Court.
Whilst it is impossible to accurately predict the costs of handling a defended claim, given the varying factors, we would estimate the costs to be circa £1,000 – £3,000 to conclude matters that are not allocated to the Fast or Multi Track.