In the first article in a new debt recovery series from Else Solicitors, Laura Charles looks at the importance of Knowing your Debtor.
Things to consider before starting a claim – Part 1 Name
Before commencing Court Proceedings, there are certain things to consider as even getting the basic information wrong can cause delays and further costs to you down the line.
So, in this series of “Do you know your Debtor” – Part 1 is dealing with the name.
This may seem a really obvious and basic point however you would be surprised at the amount of people who obtain a judgment in the wrong name and then have to remedy that in order to be able to enforce it, causing delays and incurring further costs!
There can sometimes be minor errors in typing the names into the Claim Form – even just missing a letter out of a name or getting them the wrong way round! If this is not spotted and dealt with straight away, when the Judgment comes through, you may not be able to enforce it and will need to request permission from the Court to amend it. At this point, you have been without your payment for some time and you are already out of pocket.
We have had instances where the Judgment is completely in the wrong name of the person or company and have obtained Judgments against people or companies that do not exist!
If you do issue your own claims via MCOL (for example), ensure you do have the correct name of your defendants(s). You may have some ID from the Defendant or did they complete an account opening form with you. Were any credit checks carried out to confirm the name and address etc? For debtors that are companies, a simple search on Companies House can confirm the correct name of your defendant. You could be carrying on business with them under their trading name and not be aware of their limited company name or status!
For debtors who are individuals, you may wish to consider a trace to ensure you have the most up to date details. Sometimes, thinking you know where the debtor resides or if they own a particular property is not enough confirmation to confirm residency and a trace will help show the Court you did all you could before you issued the claim. We can help with this.