Issuing a County Court Judgment (CCJ)
When invoices are unpaid by customers it can be difficult deciding how to achieve payment. If regular correspondence does not result in payment, the next process is outsourcing to a debt collection partner or commencing legal actions.
If legal actions are the next preferred route an LBA (Letter Before Action) must be sent which has a deadline by which the debtor need to pay or provide adequate reasons for non-payment. The LBA can be issued by an instructed solicitor if required. The LBA results in over 80% repayments being made at this point.
If the LBA does not achieve the desired results then the next stage is to issue a summons. If the sum owed is less than £100,000 an MCOL (Money Claim Online) can be sent by yourself or an instructed solicitor will issue it (Solicitors fees will apply).
If done through MCOL details of the business and the claim need to be given of both claimant and defendant. It will cover the sum due and what goods or service have been provided. You also have an option to claim interest at this point. A court charge will need to be paid before issuing the legal claim that will be submitted within 48 hours from the date of claim submission.
The debtor or claimant will receive it in five days with the fifth day termed as ‘date of service’. Within a fortnight of the date of service, a response from the claimant should arrive. If they apply for an AOS (Acknowledgement of Service), it could take up to 28 days. Depending upon defendant response the court asks the claimant if they wish to proceed with their claim.
A County Court Judgment (CCJ) can be requested after the issuing of the claim and the deadline for response from the defendant has passed. A CCJ is issued against the debtor and publicly recorded. Once the CCJ has been registered, the claimant can now enforce this judgement through a Court Bailiff or Sheriff. Fees will apply and are normally recovered from the defendant.
You can seek the services of a Debt Solicitor to guide you through the steps or process the case for you.