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Debt Recovery questions/advice

Discussion in 'General Business Forum' started by 12Matthew12, Jan 11, 2021.

  1. 12Matthew12

    12Matthew12 UKBF Newcomer Free Member

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    I would consider this however the company is approx 4hours drive away, and given the current lockdown that cannot be done.

    Thanks
     
    Posted: Jan 13, 2021 By: 12Matthew12 Member since: Sep 15, 2015
    #21
  2. 12Matthew12

    12Matthew12 UKBF Newcomer Free Member

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    Sorry the quote went a bit funny. My previous reply was as per below:

    Mark T Jones said: 'At this stage of the game I'd do nothing about it - if you are really lucky it will keep your options open to pursue either or both parties.

    At this stage of the game I'd do nothing about it - if you are really lucky it will keep your options open to pursue either or both parties.'



    So would you suggest I stop with any actions what so ever? Or continue to pursue 'Company 1' with the steps you mentioned earlier on above. i.e, try to make contact again, Send Letter Before Action, issue claim through MCOL?

    If it turned out I had invoiced the wrong company, is it okay for me to re-invoice Company 2 for the same work or does that become too messy leading to potential problems if a claim needed to be made again?
     
    Posted: Jan 13, 2021 By: 12Matthew12 Member since: Sep 15, 2015
    #22
  3. Mark T Jones

    Mark T Jones UKBF Big Shot Free Member

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    I would most definitely continue with action.

    immediately.
     
    Posted: Jan 13, 2021 By: Mark T Jones Member since: Nov 4, 2015
    #23
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  4. Mr D

    Mr D UKBF Legend Free Member

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    You presumably were owed by one company - you deal with that company. Not the other company who are nothing to do with you unless they too also owe a seperate debt.

    Most of the time people do work for a particular company, if that company doesn't pay there isn't another company they can chase.
    If it turns out you had been trying to chase the wrong company then you can correct to chasing the right company however that would have to be correcting your mistake rather than changing your mind about who to chase.

    Remember, different company is a different legal entity and usually nothing to do with previous company.
     
    Posted: Jan 13, 2021 By: Mr D Member since: Feb 12, 2017
    #24
  5. 12Matthew12

    12Matthew12 UKBF Newcomer Free Member

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    My plan was to try a final time to contact the debtor in a friendly and polite manner via phone and email, requesting payment and trying to find out if there is a specific reason as to why they have not paid or are unable to pay. I suspect I'd hear no reply from them which would lead to sending them a physical, tracked and signed for Letter Before Action.

    Are there specifics to what this letter should contain? I'm assuming it's; bringing their attention again to the outstanding debt, quantify the debt which is outstanding, when the debt was due and then setting out X amount of days they have to pay before legal action is taken?

    If that is correct what is the minimum amount of days I can request payment within?

    That's exactly where the confusion lies, I don't know at what point (if it has) they transitioned their work/business from one company to another, if that makes sense. Meaning that the invoices I issued possibly should have been sent to Company 2 instead. I don't know if they can push back on that and say 'The work was instructed by Company 1, not Company 2'. I don't know if they could prove either way considering their correspondence always had the 'Company 2' branding/names etc referenced.

    Thanks
     
    Posted: Jan 13, 2021 By: 12Matthew12 Member since: Sep 15, 2015
    #25
  6. Mark T Jones

    Mark T Jones UKBF Big Shot Free Member

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    Do it.

    Log all calls and communications.

    You can download a LBA template; just be sure that it makes sense.

    Use an intelligent time span - probably 14 days - and make clear how they should pay.

    At this stage, your greatest strength lies in making it clear that you can and will pursue them through the courts.

    Follow up on action.

    At the very least it will be a lesson in process
     
    Posted: Jan 13, 2021 By: Mark T Jones Member since: Nov 4, 2015
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  7. simon field

    simon field UKBF Legend Full Member - Verified Business

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    What Mark said.

    Edit: to add a bit of extra weight, there’s solicitors who’ll send a LBA for not a lot.

    Thomas Higgins is one that’s come up on here numerous times.
     
    Posted: Jan 13, 2021 By: simon field Member since: Feb 4, 2011
    #27
  8. MBE2017

    MBE2017 UKBF Ace Free Member

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    I would also recommend you continue chasing whoever you invoiced originally, since two invoices have been paid. If your client has changed trading name or company, they should inform you at the time. I would also check to see if the same tel number, email etc has continued to be used, as this suggests no change.

    It also leaves your client in the slight quandary if they have changed firm, explaining why they did not make clear where they now worked, to avoid the other firm in legal action.

    Anyway, an actual tel call is best, the small claims court likes to see you have issued a letter stating at least two weeks notice is given, you can offer less, but the courts prefer two weeks minimum IME.

    Log everything, confirm everything in writing, particularly who they are working for, invoice address etc. If you go on to issue a letter before action, send copies of all the outstanding invoices, and an outline of your attempts to collect the payment.

    One word of advice though, if you issue proceedings, follow through, for it to have any real weight.
     
    Posted: Jan 13, 2021 By: MBE2017 Member since: Feb 16, 2017
    #28
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  9. 12Matthew12

    12Matthew12 UKBF Newcomer Free Member

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    Thank you for your advice. The email address, business address, telephone number, front facing name has not changed since I've been dealing with them as if they had already transitioned to using the new company, but not quite. They have always essentially come across as 'Company 2' through their communications. The first 2 invoices were paid by Company 1.

    Is it seen in bad faith if they have transitioned over to 'Company 2' without letting me know, and would any court action lean in my favour should it come to that and if I needed to re-invoice the new company?
     
    Posted: Jan 13, 2021 By: 12Matthew12 Member since: Sep 15, 2015
    #29
  10. Mark T Jones

    Mark T Jones UKBF Big Shot Free Member

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    Nobody knows the answer

    At this moment your strength lies in demonstrating that you are willing to use the extent of the law to recover what is owed, so JFDI!
     
    Posted: Jan 13, 2021 By: Mark T Jones Member since: Nov 4, 2015
    #30
  11. Mr D

    Mr D UKBF Legend Free Member

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    No.
    It's not bad faith.

    It may be a new contract if you then did work for company 2, a completely different person than company 1.
    But no reason for them to tell you anything about what they do internally.

    I set up a new company, was irrelevant to my suppliers that I had done so. My affair not theirs.

    Company 2 was set up. The director may choose to immediately or over time have company 2 start doing some stuff. If you then did work for company 2 then company 2 will owe you for that work - but is pretty much the only way company 2 will be relevant to you.
     
    Posted: Jan 13, 2021 By: Mr D Member since: Feb 12, 2017
    #31
  12. MBE2017

    MBE2017 UKBF Ace Free Member

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    Follow Marks advice above, only the small claims court will decide, that is what you need to concentrate on if things get that far,
     
    Posted: Jan 13, 2021 By: MBE2017 Member since: Feb 16, 2017
    #32