Debt Claims in the District Court-How to Obtain Judgment in Default

judgment in default district court

Do you need to pursue a debt in the District Court?

Are you being pursued for a debt?

Confused about what’s involved in obtaining a judgment where the debtor just ignores the Claim Notice and does not enter an Appearance or Defence?

Let’s take a look at what happens then.

If a respondent who has been served with a claim notice in a debt claim does not serve and file an appearance or serve a defence within the time prescribed by Order 42, or within any other time fixed by the Court for serving and filing his or her appearance or for serving his or her defence, you may apply for an order of judgment in default. (The time prescribed by Order 42 is 28 days).

You must file your application with the Clerk and it must be accompanied—

(i) by an affidavit or statutory declaration (Form 41.01, 41.02 or 41.03, Schedule C, as appropriate) of service of the claim notice; and

(ii) by a certificate (Form 47.01, Schedule C), which may be endorsed on the affidavit of debt signed by the claimant’s solicitor or by the claimant (if acting in person) that no appearance, notice requiring particulars or defence has been received from the respondent; and

(iii) by an affidavit of debt verifying the claimant’s claim (Form 47.02 or 47.03, Schedule C, as appropriate); and

(iv) by a form of judgment (decree) (Form 47.04 or 47.05, Schedule C, as appropriate).

Where a respondent has signed a consent to judgment which has been duly witnessed, the applicant may file an affidavit (Form 47.06, Schedule C) verifying the consent instead of an affidavit of debt; and where the consent is to judgment by instalments, the form of judgment (decree) in Form 47.07, Schedule C must be used.

Your affidavit verifying your claim must be sworn (or the certificate referred to above must be given) within one month before the date of the application for judgment. Judgment may not be given where the affidavit verifying the claimant’s claim was not sworn (or the certificate was not given) within one month before the date of the application for judgment.

Where your application for judgment includes a claim in respect of value-added tax, the affidavit (or certificate) must verify whether or not value-added tax is payable by the claimant on his or her legal costs, and if payable whether or not the sum payable is recoverable by the claimant from the Revenue Commissioners.

If you apply for a Judgment as set out above, and a Judge is satisfied that an order should be made, the Judge may make such an order otherwise than at a sitting of the Court, and may fix the amount of costs and interest as is appropriate in the circumstances in accordance with the Schedule of Costs.

If a Judge is not satisfied that an order should be made, the Judge may, or if the claimant so requests, the Judge must, refer the matter to the Court for decision.

If the Judge refers an application to the Court or an application is assigned a return date, the Court may on hearing the application, and any evidence the Court considers appropriate—

(a) make the order sought in the application;

(b) direct that a further affidavit or affidavits be filed;

(c) give directions as to the application;

(d) refuse to make the order sought in the application;

(e) make any other order it considers appropriate.

(6) The Clerk must notify the claimant of any order made by the Judge or (if the application has been referred to the Court) any decision or order of the Court.

Even if you obtain an order for judgment in default against a respondent as set out above you may enforce the order and continue the proceeding against any other respondent. In the event that the claimant recovers by enforcement or otherwise the full amount of his claim including costs against any respondent, further proceedings against any remaining respondent must be stayed save in respect of any further costs as may be claimed against any other respondent.

If a respondent serves a counterclaim which is a debt claim, what’s set out above applies as if—

(a) the respondent were the claimant;

(b) a reference to the appearance in that rule were a reference to the appearance to the counterclaim; and

(c) the claimant were the respondent.

Setting aside judgment by default

A party against whom a judgment in default has been obtained under may apply by notice of motion (Form 44.02 Schedule C with the necessary modifications) to the Court  in which the judgment was obtained for an order to vary or set aside the judgment on the ground that the same was obtained by fraud, misrepresentation, surprise, mistake or other sufficient ground.

Service of the notice of motion does not operate as a stay of proceedings unless the respondent lodges with the Clerk the amount for which judgment was given and the amount fixed for costs.

If a party fails to comply with an order made by the Court in civil proceedings, the Court may, where it considers it just to do so, dismiss the civil proceedings or strike out any defence or counterclaim and proceed to give judgment or make any order (including any order for costs) as is then appropriate as if the party in default had not pleaded.

You might also want to read also about how to commence proceedings in the District Court.

Judgment in Default in Non Debt Claims

Order 47A of the District Court rules sets out how to obtain judgment in default in non debt claims.

How to Begin Civil Proceedings in the District Court

district-court-legal-proceedings

The District Court now has a jurisdictional limit of €15,000.

So, if you need to pursue a debt or a claim for damages for breach of contract, negligence, or on any ground for less than €15,000 you will commence proceedings in the District Court.

To do this, you file, for issue and service, a claim notice in the District Court.

What Must You Put in the Claim Notice?

A claim notice must—

(a) state the full name and address of the claimant and an address for service of documents on the claimant; and

(b) if the claimant sues in person, state an address for service of documents on the claimant; and

(c) if the claimant sues or the respondent is sued in a representative capacity, state the capacity in which the claimant sues or the respondent is sued in a representative capacity; and

(d) state the name and address of the respondent; and

(e) if the claimant sues by a solicitor, state the name or firm and business address of the solicitor and also, if the solicitor is the agent of another, the name or firm and business address of the principal.

A claim notice must contain a statement of claim which must—

(a) contain, in a summary form, a statement of all material facts on which the claimant relies, but not evidence by which those facts are to be proved;

(b) contain the necessary particulars of every fact;

(c) if the claim arises by or under any enactment, identify the specific provision of the enactment that is relied on;

(d) state specifically the amount or other relief or remedy sought; (e) state the place where and the date when the claim arose.

A statement of claim in a debt claim must state that the claim is for debt or liquidated damages, must specify the amount claimed by way of debt or liquidated damages and must include particulars of the claimant’s demand for payment.

Where the claim is founded on any written document, the statement of claim must state the date of the document and the parties to the document and:

(a) if the claim is for the payment of money, the amount claimed, or

(b) if the claim is for breach of contract, the alleged breach or breaches of the contract.

A statement of claim must contain a list of all correspondence and other documents on which the claimant will rely at the trial including the date if any and a brief description of each document.

In a debt claim, the claim notice must be indorsed with a statement as follows—

“If you pay the amount of €…… and costs of €……. to the claimant or the claimant’s solicitor within ten days and without filing and serving an appearance and defence you may avoid further costs.”.

If a claim notice is indorsed  as set out in the preceding paragraph, and the respondent pays the amounts claimed within the time limited for filing and serving an appearance and defence, then the civil proceeding is concluded.

Any claim by a consumer for damages under section 74 of the Consumer Protection Act 2007 (No. 19 of 2007) must be commenced by the issue and service in accordance with this Order of a claim notice, entitled in the matter of section 74 of the Consumer Protection Act 2007 and otherwise in the Form 40.01, Schedule C with such modifications as are appropriate.

 

Where Do You Commence Proceedings?

A claim notice must be filed with and issued by the Clerk for the Court area:

(a) in which the respondent or one of the respondents ordinarily resides or carries on any profession, business or occupation,

or at the election of the claimant,

(b) in proceedings founded on contract, (except proceedings arising from an agreement under the Consumer Credit Act 1995 or the European Communities (Consumer Credit Agreements) Regulations 2010 (S.I. 281 of 2010)) in which the contract is alleged to have been made, or

(c) in proceedings founded on tort, in which the tort is alleged to have been committed, or

(d) in ejectment proceedings, in which the lands the subject of the proceedings are situated.

Unless the Claim Notice is to be served outside the State a claim notice must be in Form 40.01, Schedule C, or in Form 40.02, Schedule C in a debt claim.

Appearance and defence

A respondent who intends to defend civil proceedings must give, or send by post, to the claimant or solicitor for the claimant an appearance and defence, in the Form 42.01, Schedule C, not later than 28 days after the service on him or her of the claim notice, and must at the same time file a copy of his or her appearance with the Clerk.

A defence must—

(a) contain a statement that the respondent intends to defend the claim notice; and

(b) state the name and address of the respondent and an address for service in the European Union at which documents required to be served on the respondent may be left; and

(c) if the respondent defends by a solicitor, state the name or firm and business address within the European Union of the solicitor and also, if the solicitor is an agent of another, the name or firm and business address of the principal.

Appearance and defence to debt claim

An appearance and defence in a debt claim must be in Form 42.03, Schedule C. A respondent who intends to defend a debt claim must give, or send by post, to the claimant or solicitor for the claimant his or her appearance and defence not later than 28 days after the service on him or her of the claim notice, and must at the same time file a copy of his or her appearance with the Clerk.

A defence in a debt claim must state whether the claim is:

(a) disputed as to both liability and amount;

(b) disputed only as to amount and if so, what amount is admitted to be due;

(c) admitted in full and if so, whether the respondent proposes to pay immediately or requires time for payment.

Appearance and defence in claims other than debt claims

Unless the respondent requires further particulars of statement of claim, a respondent to a claim other than a debt claim who contests or disputes all or part of a claimant’s claim must serve an appearance and defence in Form 42.01, Schedule C on the claimant at the address for service stated in the claim notice and must file a copy of the appearance with the Clerk.

A defence must state which of the facts stated in statement of claim are—

(a) admitted;

(b) denied;

(c) not admitted.

A respondent who, in the defence, does not state whether a fact stated in statement of claim is—

(a) admitted;

(b) denied;

(c) not admitted—

must be taken to admit the fact.

A respondent who states that a fact stated in statement of claim is denied must—

(a) give reasons for denying the fact; and

(b) if the respondent intends to prove a fact different from that stated in the statement of claim, state, with necessary particulars, the fact that the respondent intends to prove.

The respondent must state specifically, with particulars, any fact or matter which—

(a) makes the claim of the claimant not maintainable; or

(b) if not stated specifically, might take the claimant by surprise; or

(c) raises questions of fact not arising out of the statement of claim. (6) If the defence arises by or under any enactment, the defence must identify the specific provision relied on.

A defence must contain a list of all correspondence and other documents (other than any documents already identified in the statement of claim) on which the respondent will rely at the trial including the date if any and a brief description of each document.

The respondent may not rely on the defence of tender unless, within seven days after filing an appearance and defence, the respondent pays to the Clerk the amount alleged to have been tendered.

A respondent who has entered an appearance and defence in a debt claim which complies with the requirements of the rule above is not required to serve and file a defence which complies with the requirements of this rule unless an order has been made in the application for judgment on affidavit refusing judgment and giving permission to defend, in which case, the respondent must serve and file a defence which complies with the requirements of this rule within 21 days after the order is made.

Late filing and service of appearance and defence

A respondent may serve an appearance and defence and file an appearance at any time after the service of a claim notice with the written consent of the claimant, but an appearance and defence may not be served, except by permission of the Court, if the claimant has obtained judgment in default of appearance.

NOTICE REQUIRING COPY DOCUMENTS OR FURTHER PARTICULARS

This does not apply to debt claims.

A respondent may at any time before or at the time of delivery of a defence apply to the claimant in writing:

(a) for copies of all or any of the documents listed in the statement of claim on which the claimant relies or referred to in the statement of claim (Form 42.06, Schedule C);

(b) requiring the claimant to provide further particulars which the respondent asserts are reasonably necessary as to specified matters in the statement of claim (Form 42.07, Schedule C).

A claimant may within 28 days after delivery of a defence apply to the respondent in writing:

(a) for copies of all or any of the documents listed in the defence on which the respondent relies or referred to in the defence (Form 42.06, Schedule C);

(b) requiring the respondent to provide further particulars which the claimant asserts are reasonably necessary (Form 42.07, Schedule C).

COUNTERCLAIM

A respondent may set off or set up any right or claim the respondent alleges he or she has against the claimant as a counterclaim against the claim of the claimant, whether the respondent’s claim is a claim in damages or not.

A set off or counterclaim has the same effect as a cross action, so as to enable the Court to determine both the claim and the counterclaim at the same trial.

A counterclaim must be in Form 42.08, Schedule C.

STAY OR DISMISSAL OF CLAIM AND STRIKING OUT STATEMENT OF CLAIM OR DEFENCE

The Court may at any stage of the civil proceedings order to be struck out or amended any matter in any pleading which is unnecessary or scandalous, or which may tend to prejudice, embarrass, or delay the fair trial of the civil proceedings.

The Court may order any pleading to be struck out, on the ground that it discloses no reasonable cause of action or answer and in any such case or in case of the claim or defence being shown by the pleadings to be frivolous or vexatious, the Court may order the claim to be stayed or dismissed, or judgement to be entered accordingly, as the Court considers just.

What to Do Now

Sometimes, especially in debt collection matters, a solicitor’s letter to a debtor may have the desired effect and eliminate the need to bring proceedings in Court.

If you need a solicitor to handle things for you contact us.

3 Vital Questions to Ask When Trying to Collect Debts

debt-collection-mistakes

Are you owed money by a debtor?

And you’re not quite sure whether to just forget about it and write it off, or pursue it?

Before making your decision there are 3 critically important factors to consider.

  1. Who owes you the money?

This might seem like a blindingly obvious fact that you don’t need to be concerned about. Well, it’s not obvious at all.

Let me explain. While Mick or John or Susan may have ordered your goods or services they may have been acting on behalf of, and with the authority of another legal entity such as a partnership or limited company.

I won’t go into the legal concepts of implied or ostensible authority, and explicit authority, but keep at the forefront of your mind that you need to pursue the correct legal entity.

Because if Mick was acting on behalf of “Slim Shady Builders Limited” then there is no point in suing or pursuing Mick. The correct target is Slim Shady Builders Limited which may be on the verge of liquidation or dissolution.

  1. Are they a “mark”?

What I mean here is are they worth pursuing? If you are successful in obtaining a judgment against your debtor is there a possibility that you will get paid? Or a snowball’s chance in hell?

Remember: obtaining a judgment that is unenforceable is a complete waste of your time and money. Yes, you may have the legal costs of obtaining that judgment awarded against your debtor and in your favour but the bad news may well be that they still can’t pay.

  1. Will it be cost effective to sue?

If the amount of money owed is small it may not be worth your while pursuing it through the Courts. Your legal costs will still have to be paid and the scale costs which you may be awarded in the District Court will almost certainly fall short of your actual legal costs.

Guess who will be picking up the financial slack? You.

Conclusion

The best way to approach bad debts is probably try to avoid them in the first place by being more selective about who you do business with and your terms and conditions of engagement.

There is a saying in retailing that “volume is vanity”. What this means is that it does not make sense to pursue turnover at the cost of setting aside your good judgment and weighting up the prospects of getting paid for your goods or services.

Let’s face it: if you want to dominate any market just undercut everyone on price. But this isn’t a sensible strategy, I’m sure you’ll agree.

So, to avoid and reduce your bad debts sometimes you just have to walk away and refuse to supply unless you are paid in advance or load the dice in your favour to ensure a return for your business.

Debt Collection In Ireland-Debt Collection Procedures and Solicitors’ Fees

Debt collection in Ireland is a serious problem today, both for creditor and debtor.

The pressure on the  cash flow of many businesses and sole traders, especially with the banks in Ireland effectively closed to many SMEs, can lead very quickly to a major cash flow problem.

debt-collection-ireland

Common questions in relation to debt collection in Ireland are set out below.

If you need a solicitor, don’t hesitate to contact us through the form at the end of this page or simply use the contact numbers on our contact page.

UPDATE 2014

The procedure for debt collection has changed slightly in 2014 because of the new jurisdiction limits for each court and a new procedure in the District Court involving a different procedure with a Claim rather than a Summons. Contact a solicitor to discuss.

Questions which crop up most often include-

  • How do I pursue a debt?
  • Why can I not issue debtor proceedings for rent owed for my house?
  • Can I issue debt proceedings in the District Court myself?
  • What should I do when I receive debt collection letters?
  • What is the best way to deal with debt collection agencies?
  • Should I use a debt collection agency when trying to collect a debt?
  • Judgment mortgages?
  • Where to bring enforcement proceedings for debt collection?

Generally where the creditor lives of carries on his business. The district court will be the venue for sums less than €6,348.

District Court proceedings (sums less than €6,348)

Where you are owed a sum of less than €6,348 and have exhausted your debt collection procedure of issuing demand letters and are clearly having no success the next step in the debt collection process is to issue and serve a Civil Summons claiming your debt on your creditor.

If you then receive no letter of intention to defend the summons then you are free to apply to the District court office, filing the correct documents, for a summary decree.

This simply means that if the person who owes you the debt does not defend your claim or contest the amount, then you can get a summary decree from the district court which certifies the debt that is owed to you.

The documents you need to file in this application are-

1. An affidavit of debt sworn by yourself or by someone on your behalf ( eg company accountant, company secretary)
2. A completed decree form

If the District court is satisfied to enter judgment then you will get your signed decree from the District court and this can be sent to the Sheriff for enforcement.

A defendant can seek to have this decree set aside or varied on grounds of fraud, misrepresentation, surprise, mistake or other sufficient grounds.

Circuit Court proceedings (sums less than €38,092.14)

Again when no defence or appearance is received to your issuing of proceedings(Civil Bill) in your debt collection efforts you are free to lodge the necessary papers in the Circuit Court office to obtain judgment.

The papers to be lodged in the Circuit Court office are more extensive and you really need the help of a solicitor to do so. But because the amount of debt that the circuit court will be dealing with will be up to €38,092.14, then it will be well worth it to get a legal professional on the case.

If the debt is defended and contested then it goes to court hearing and assuming you win an award you can obtain the court order from the County Registrar.

And just like the debt collection procedure for the district court, you can get the sheriff for the area to execute the court order.

High Court (sums greater than €38,092.14)

To carry out your debt collection for sums of this magnitude you must issue a High Court Summary Summons.

Assuming that no appearance has been entered by your creditor then you can proceed to lodge the necessary papers with the Central Office of the High Court judgments section which will allow you to obtain judgment in default of appearance.

This is a technical and demanding process which will require the assistance of a solicitor.

Enforcement of Judgments

Once judgment has been obtained it should firstly be served on the defendant. Judgments of all courts can then be registered in the Central Office of the High Court and will appear in trade gazettes such as Stubb’s Gazette.

This prospect of adverse publicity can encourage a creditor to pay you promptly.

There are various procedures then for summoning before the appropriate court the debtor for the purposes of ascertaining what property and assets the debtor owns. This is a similar procedure which occurs in relation to bankruptcy.

If and when you obtain a court order or judgment against your creditor in your debt collection process another further step is to obtain a judgment mortgage on some valuable property of the creditor.

There is no monetary jurisdiction on the District Court when it comes to the enforcement of judgments.

So, regardless of which court judgment is obtained, it can be enforced in the District Court.

However, before attempting to enforce judgment there are a number of essential steps to be taken:

  1. serve the judgment on the defendant. Personal service is required for an individual; for a company you can leave it at the registered office of the company or serve by post to that office.
  2. registration of the judgment in the Central Office of the High Court. This is not essential but the threat of appearing in Stubbs Gazette and other trade journals can be an encouragement to the debtor.
  3. examination of the debtor of the debtor as to means.

Read enforcement of judgments for more information about enforcing judgments, examination, etc.

Judgment Mortgage

It is possible to register a judgment mortgage on property of the debtor, even the family home. You can then apply to the appropriate court to force the sale of the house and get paid out of the proceeds.

However the courts are reluctant to force the sale of the family home. It is important to realise that a judgment mortgage can be registered on a family home even without the consent of the non debt owing spouse.

To obtain the judgment mortgage you need to go to the appropriate court and file various documents such as details of the name of the cause, the names and addresses of the parties, the trades or professions of the parties, the location of the lands, the amount of the debt and costs and a statement from the party who is owed the money which must be sworn.

Once the judgment mortgage is obtained then it can be registered in the Land Registry or the Registry of Deeds.

Once the judgment mortgage is registered the creditor can issue proceedings for the sale of the property and if he is successful in this application then the court makes an order for sale and this sale is supervised by the Examiner of the High Court.

For this part of your debt collection procedure you will generally need the help of a solicitor. But for anyone involved in small business it is no burden to carry to understand how the debt collection process works and your role in it.

Execution Order

The execution order occurs in the latter phase of debt collection. And this is after you have obtained a court order for the debt due to you.

In this scenario you apply to the relevant court for an execution order which, if granted, is sent to the Sheriff for execution. The sheriff then writes to the debtor and has a duty to execute the execution order within a reasonable time.

He has the power to seize all the debtors’ moveable goods and has a right of entry into premises but he must not use violence and must have reasonable grounds for believing that there are defaulter’s goods on the premises.

You will then be in a position to hand over that decree to the sheriff for the area and he must attempt to execute it on your behalf.

An execution order is valid for 12 months but often if the debtor has no goods to seize then the sheriff will return the execution order to the creditor marked ‘nulla bona’ which essentially means ‘no goods’.

However nowadays this procedure can be ineffective in practice as a lot of goods will be leased or supplied to the debtor with retention of title clauses in the contract or on a sale or return basis.

However the existence of bankruptcy proceedings, receivership or liquidation complicates things and the Official Assignee in bankruptcy, the receiver or liquidator all have priority.

So whilst some debt collection procedures are relatively straightforward, some will need the assistance of a solicitor.

Attachment and Committal

This is a process where a debtor fails to abide by the terms of an instalment order (an order to pay a certain amount laid down by the court) then you can apply to the District court for an order of committal ie an order for arrest and imprisonment.

To apply for this order the you will need to lodge with the court the instalment order and a declaration of its service on the creditor.

However if the creditors failure is due to hardship or inability to pay the Judge will seldom grant a committal order.

The law has changed in this area since the Monaghan Credit Union/Caroline McCann case-read more about attachment and committal here.

Attachments of Debts(Garnishee)

Another feature of the debt collection procedure is a fairly uncommon procedure called a Garnishee.

This occurs where the creditor has no assets apart from debts due to him, then you can apply to have those debts paid to him instead. This can also occur in relation to balances in the creditors bank account, wages due to him and any other sums due to him.

Appointment of Receiver

Both the High court and the Circuit court have the power to appoint a receiver over a judgment debtor’s property to enforce a judgment. When the receiver takes possession it is held for the court who directs what shall be done with it. The receiver has the powers which are given to him by the court.

Bankruptcy

Another, and last resort procedure, in your debt collection may involve issuing bankruptcy proceedings.

If you are intending to issuing bankruptcy proceedings against a creditor you should bear in mind the following

You gain no priority in relation to your debt

Preferential claims will still be paid first ie employees, Revenue Commissioners etc.

Bankruptcy summons will only be granted by the High Court where all other avenues have been exhausted

The Bankruptcy Act 1988 provides 2 methods by which a debtor can make a formal arrangement with his creditors

A private arrangement under the control of the court which is very similar to an examinership process for companies.

This involves the debtor setting out the reasons why he is unable to pay his debts and requesting protection from proceedings including Bankruptcy.

When the protection order has been granted the debtor will meet with his creditors and make an offer to them.

If three fifths of the creditors in number and value accept the offer, it is deemed to be accepted

Private arrangement outside the court. This is a matter of contract between the debtor and his creditors and needs the support of all creditors.

Companies

Where you are owed money by a company and you know the company is insolvent then you can petition the High Court to wind up the company (section 213 procedure). This can be an effective debt collection procedure, although the courts do not like to see it used until all other debt collection avenues have been explored first.

To do this you serve a 21 day demand letter on the company; if the debt is not paid within this period the debtor is free to petition for the winding up. Again the petitioner’s debt ranks behind preferential creditors such as employees and the Revenue Commissioners.

Pursuing debt collection against a company

1. Obtain a judgement against the company by way of “summons for liquidated debt”, the amount of debt determines in what Court the summons is issued
2. Have the judgement executed by the sheriff or the county registrar
3. Have the judgement registered in the High Court which will result in publication in Stubb’s Gazette, potentially affecting debtor’s credit rating
4. Lodge an affidavit with the Property Registration Authority registering the judgement against the debtor’s property.
5. Obtain a Court Order that the company has wilfully defaulted on the payment of its debt.

The Courts have broad powers including the seizure of the company’s assets,the director’s personal assets and even the imprisonment of the debtor.This option can be expensive and difficult to prove, and the Courts may take the less stringent approach of for example a stay to allow the debtor pay.

Apply to the High Court, where the company is unable to pay its debts but is not in liquidation for a wide range of reliefs, including arrest, seizure of assets,imposition of personal liability and assessment for damages.

Apply to the High Court to have the company put into liquidation.

Solicitors Fees for Debt Collection

You can learn more about solicitors’ fees in Ireland here.

Debtor Demand Letters

Our demand letters, which demand payment within 7 days, are customized to your requirements.

We provide three types of 7 day demand letter which we describe as

  • Soft
  • Medium
  • Hard

What type of letter you choose will depend on your relationship with your debtor, how long the money is outstanding and your personal preference-you may for example decide that the softer versions is more appropriate in the first instance if you have built up a relationship with the debtor over some years.

Correspondence fee

Our correspondence fee will arise when a debtor contacts us in relation to the demand letter with a query or perhaps looking for additional documentation, an invoice or other information.

When this happens we refer the issue to you in the first instance.

If you wish us to deal with the debtor by way of correspondence and organising a payment plan, receipt of the payments, issuing receipts and forwarding the monies to you there will be a correspondence fee to cover this work which is not recoverable from the debtor in the absence of legal proceedings being issued.

Legal Fees in Defended cases

In defended cases, that is where a Notice of Intention to Defend or an Appearance is entered and the debtor contests the case, our fees will include the Professional fees set out below plus our hourly charge out rate which we will notify you of prior to commencing work.

You will of course receive a section 68 letter setting out our fees and expected outlays or the basis on which we will charge or an estimate of our fees prior to commencing work.

Each case will have its own particular character, level of expertise, skill and responsibility requirements and for this reason it is impossible to be absolutely definitive as to our fees in respect of defended cases.

Legal fees for enforcement of Judgments

To apply for an instalment order in the District Court for a Judgment already obtained or to bring committal proceedings our fee is €195 plus vat.

We can also

  • Register a Judgment mortgage and
  • Liaise with the Sheriff to have your judgment enforced.

Legal Fees in Undefended Cases

Our legal fees for obtaining judgment on your behalf in undefended cases in the various Courts are as follows:

DEBT AMOUNT

PROFESSIONAL FEES

ESTIMATED OUTLAYS

APPROXIMATE RECOVERABLE COSTS

€318 to €635

€150.00

€45.00

€43.23

€636 to €1,270

€195.00

€45.00

€69.34

€1,271 to €1,905

€230.00

€45.00

€94.33

€1,906 to €2,540

€295.00

€45.00

€108.16

€2,541 to €3,175

€315.00

€45.00

€133.15

€3,276 to €3,810

€330.00

€45.00

€147.95

€3,811 to €4,444

€375.00

€45.00

€176.57

€4,445 to €5,079

€425.00

€45.00

€191.94

€5,080 to €5,714

€465.00

€45.00

€220.00

€5,715 to €6,349

€525.00

€145.00

€222.00

€6,350 to €11,000

€650.00

€145.00

€222.00

€11,001 to €20,000

€990.00

€145.00

€222.00

€20,001 to €38,000

€1,350.00

€145.00

€222.00

€38,001 to upwards

€1,995.00

€295.00

€222.00

If you have any queries do not hesitate to contact us and you will find that we are approachable, responsive, professional and competitive.

Conclusion

Debt collection procedures can range from the relatively straightforward to the more complex.

There are a number of procedural (and other) considerations to think about before pursuing a debtor; the most important one is probably whether your debtor is a ‘mark’ or not.

This should be the first thing to consider before pursuing a debt as there is no sense in obtaining an order or judgment against a debtor if it is unenforceable.

We would be happy to advise you in this regard and any other debt issues you may have.

Note: In contentious business a solicitor may not calculate fees or other charges as a percentage or proportion of any award or settlement.