Debt Recovery

Debt Recovery & Insolvency Pricing


Stage 1. Pre Legal Debt Recovery – sending a letter before action ‘LBA’

Starting the debt recovery process normally involves the sending of a LBA ‘letter before action’ to the debtor.

  1. If the debtor is an individual or sole trader, you will be required to send a ‘Pre-Action Protocol’ letter and will be required to wait at least 30 days before any legal claim can be issued. The cost of this is included at the section marked – Pre legal advice on the merits of your claim
  2. If you are a business seeking payment from another business and other cases not caught by the Pre-Action Protocol definition, you do not need to wait the 30 days before proceedings can be issued. You would still be required to comply with Pre-Action conduct, which states that 14 days must be given in order for the debtor to respond before proceedings can be issued. The cost of this is included at the section marked – Pre legal advice on the merits of your claim
  • Our costs for sending a LBA only for non-payment of an undisputed invoice, which does not require advice or a review of the client file will be 100% of the amount of the compensation that we can claim on your behalf under the Late Payment of Commercial Debt (Interest) Act 1998 plus £100, as follows:
Value of claim Compensation entitlement Our fee (plus VAT)
Less than £1,000 £40 £140
£1,000 – £9,999.99 £70 £170
£10,000 or more £100 £200

Pre legal advice on the merits of your claim

Value of claim Our fee (plus VAT)
Less than £10,000 £400
£10,000 or more £700

Work includes;

Review of client file, risk assessment, file set up & sending of LBA and considering any reply from the debtor or their legal advisor and providing you advice on how to proceed

Stage 2. Legal/contentious Debt Recovery

This section governs the charges we make for matters whereby legal proceedings have been issued including any work done in preparation of any such proceedings. Any work described below is;

  • subject to payment of all disbursements
  • subject to the addition of VAT

Issue fees – to issue a claim for money, the following fees will be payable on the amount claimed

Value of claim Court fee payable (£) Our fees (£)
Up to £300 35 200
£300.01 – £500 50 200
£500.01 – £1,000 70 200
£1,000.01 – £1,500 80 300
£1,500.01 – £3,000 115 300
£3,000.01 – £5,000 205 350
£5,000.01 – £10,000 455 500
£10,000.01 – £25,000 5% of the claim 600
£25,000.01 – £50,000 5% of the claim 700
£50,000.01 – £200,000 5% of the claim 1500
£200,000+ 10,000 2000

Once the Court has issued and served your claim, the Defendant will have 14 days from service to file a defence, acknowledge the claim or they may do nothing.

If the debtor does nothing, default Judgment can be obtained. The costs to enter default Judgment are;

Value of claim Recoverable costs (£) Our fees (£) Plus VAT
Judgment does not exceed £5,000 22 50
Judgment exceeds £5,000 30 60

Judgment is usually granted within 14 days from the request being received, if it is sent by mail to the Court.

If the debtor defends the claim then work done on the file will be charged on an hourly rate basis and an estimate of likely costs will be given at that stage.

Fee earners who may work on your case are:

Madeline Broddley Chartered Legal Executive hourly rate £310 plus VAT

Simon Davies Solicitor and Head of the Civil department hourly rate £310 plus VAT

Debt recovery assistant hourly rate £155 plus VAT

Application to Enforce an Award

This is the process whereby you can apply to enforce an award as if payable under a Court order, such as a liability order for the none payment of council tax

Value of claim Recoverable costs (£) Our fees(£) (plus VAT)
exceeds £25 but does not exceed £250 30.75 70
exceeds £250 but does not exceed £600 41.00 80
exceeds £600 but does not exceed £2,000 69.50 120
exceeds £2,000 75.50 150

Stage 3. Enforcement & Recovery

Once a Judgment has been obtained and if the debtor does not pay the sum ordered to be paid, you may choose to enforce the Judgment by using a variety of methods. Our charges are detailed below. Fixed costs allowable by the Court, which are recoverable from the debtor, are listed for your information. Our fee is the amount charged to you if instructed to carry out any enforcement on your behalf.

Description Court fee (£) Recoverable Costs (£) Our fee (£) (plus VAT)
Writ of Control (fifa) & Writ of Execution (High Court) 71
(plus £90 for HCEO if unsuccessful)
51.75 150
Warrant of Execution (control) 83 2.25 150
Attachment of Earnings 119 8.50 150
Information Order 59 15 per ½ hour 250
Third Party Debt Order 119 98.50 500
Application to re-issue Warrant/fi fa 0-33 50 150
Application for a Charging Order 119 110 (plus Land Registry costs) 500

PLEASE NOTE: the above fees and costs are fixed by parliament and can be changed at any time and during the term of your claim. You are liable for any increase in court fee in this regard.

Writ of Control (fifa) & Writ of Execution (High Court) – This is a process which can be productive if you are aware of any assets of the debtor. The High Court Enforcement Officer (HCEO) will attempt to seize asset to the value of your claim and costs incurred by the HCEO. The HCEO may agree a repayment programme if the debtor has insufficient assets to pay the debt. Typically this type of enforcement can take between 6-12 weeks from receiving instructions from you.

Warrant of Execution– This process and timescale is the same as a Writ of control but carried out by a County Court Bailiff.

Attachment of Earnings – This is a process whereby the Court can order an employer of the debtor to make deductions out of the debtor’s salary at source. The process can take between 4-10 weeks depending on whether the debtor co-operates with the Court in providing information requested or whether the debtor changes his employment during the process of the application.

Information Order – This is a process whereby a debtor is ordered to attend court for questioning on his assets and liabilities and ability to pay the debt. The debtor may evade service of the documentation which means that a process server may be required to effect service. This will incur a further fee for service.

Third Party Debt Order – If you are aware that the debtor is owed money by another, or has money in a bank account, you can ask the Court to Order that the payment comes to you instead of the debtor. Typically, this process takes between 2 – 6 weeks upon issue.

Charging order – You can ask the Court to place a charge upon a property owned by the debtor which property is not limited to land, but also includes pensions or stocks and shares. The application is made without notice and if the Court is satisfied the property is to be charged, the Court will grant and interim order which is then registered against the property. The fees charged are as follows

Order for Sale – This process is the enforcement of the Charging Order over land obtained. If a debtor does not pay the debt, you can apply to the Court for an Order that the property charged is sold to pay the debt. An initial investigation fee of £450 plus VAT is charged. Once you decide to pursue this application our fee is charged at the hourly rate of £260 plus VAT. We always seek to obtain an order that the debtor pays all of the costs incurred which are payable out of the proceeds of any sale, but the Courts has discretion whether to order these costs. The likely cost of obtaining an Order for Sale, on an undisputed claim, is usually £1,800.00 The disbursements incurred in pursuing this claim are as follows

Description Disbursements (£)
Issue Fee 365
Office Copies & Plan 6 (plus VAT)
Registration fee at HMLR 20
Drive by valuation 50 (plus VAT)
Agents fee for attending the hearing 150 (plus VAT)
Warrant of Possession 143


This section governs our charges for standard work involved in each of the following processes, on the basis that the claim is undefended and only 1 court hearing is required on the petition.

Our fees on insolvency processes

Process Our fee (plus VAT)
Drafting Statutory Demands £750
Drafting Bankruptcy Petitions £1000
Drafting Winding-up/Insolvent Partnership Petitions £1250

If the claim becomes defended, which includes an application to set aside a statutory demand, an hourly rate will be charged at a rate of £260 plus VAT per hour. If a hearing is adjourned, we will charge a further fee for preparing for the adjourned hearing, including any increase in advocacy fees. A fee estimate will be provided at the time.

Disbursements on insolvency processes

Statutory Demand Bankruptcy Petition Winding-up/Insolvent Partnership Petitions
Court fee £332 £332
Official Receivers Deposit £1,500 £1,600
Process servers fee £100-£200 (plus VAT) £100-£200 (plus VAT) £100-£200 (plus VAT)
Advertising various
Advocates fee (per hearing) £100 (plus VAT) £150-£250 (plus VAT)
Bankruptcy search £12
Company search £12

Proceeding with a statutory demand is usually only done if the debt is undisputed or a Judgment has already been granted by the Court. Service of the demand usually takes place between 2-3 weeks of the demand being given to a process server for serving. Once served the debtor has 21 days to pay the debt or 18 days to apply to the Court to set aside the demand. A bankruptcy Order is usually obtained within 6-12 weeks of a petition being issued.

Winding-Up/Insolvent Partnership Petitions

More details on charges for insolvency proceedings can be provided upon request.

Pepperells Limited, registered in England and Wales: No. 10244781 | Registered Office: 100 Alfred Gelder Street, Hull, East Yorkshire, HU1 2AE | Authorised & Regulated by The Solicitors Regulation Authority | Regulation Authority Numbers 636188, 638554, 638556, 647027, 636188, 807163, 818433, 8000373, 832782 and 830125. |

Pepperells Solicitors are committed to ensuring that all Partners, Consultants and Employees give their full co-operation to the Legal Ombudsman in the event of any dispute or complaint against our firm, contact details of which can be found at VAT No. 365 0589 36