A Cornwall based sole trader operating a glazing business was supplied with materials by our client, a Cornwall based builders merchant and then ignored all of our client’s attempts to recover payment of invoices totalling £760.62. Although this was a small debt, it was more than Advocate Debt Recoveries minimum instruction value of £750.00, and we were happy to act on the instruction.
We commenced our action, and the debtor received Notice of our instruction by post and email. As we were about to initiate telephone contact with the debtor on the 3rd day of action, our client advised us by email that they had received full payment of the principal invoice sums. While relieved to have finally received payment, our client was unsure if anything else from them or any fee to us was required.
We thanked our client for the update and assured them that no payment was required. However, as per the agreement entered in with our client when they instructed us, our client is entitled to receive 100% of the invoice sums they are owed with no commission or fee to be paid. Therefore, it’s down to us to collect the invoice sums and the late payment charges that make up our fee.
Recovery of debt collection fees
We continued in our action advising the debtor that payment of the principal debt did not cease the legal liability to settle the statutory late payment charges that the debtor had incurred up to the date that the debtor had finally settled the invoices. And that these charges remained enforceable in Court. The debtor paid the charges two days later, and our file in the matter was closed.
It is not uncommon for a debtor to pay the principal debt directly to our client as soon as they receive our correspondence to evade the additional late payment charges that make up our fee. That is fine with us! Our main objective is to get our client paid.
In such circumstances, all we require is that the client notifies us as soon as they receive payment, and we will then continue to pursue the debtor until the charges are paid.