Debt Recovery 

Withheld payments can be a real problem, starving many small and medium sized businesses of vital cashflow that is the lifeblood of their business.
With many debt collection services, day-to-day recovery is handled by junior or unqualified staff. All too often, that means that mistakes are made, which will cost you valuable time and money.
We recognise the importance of effective debt recovery to our clients. We offer a fixed-fee debt recovery service, and our highly skilled and experienced team works with organisations large and small, using a debt collection system that makes the process swift and efficient.

Collection of undisputed debts

Where debts are disputed and legal proceedings are fought, the cost and risk can be substantial. We will provide you with the best information possible about costs in such cases.
With undisputed claims, the debt collection process will usually commence with a letter of claim, as required by the relevant court protocol.
We make a nominal charge of £7.50 plus VAT for sending a letter of claim and reporting to you with payment of the debt, where it is paid.
If court proceedings are required to recover a debt of under £100,000, we will charge you with the same amount as under the court rules can be recovered from the debtor (in an undisputed case) by way of ‘fixed costs’, plus £15, plus VAT on the whole amount. Thus, if the court proceedings result in payment by the debtor without the need for further action, the net cost to you will be £15 plus vat chargeable on the total fee.
A court fee is payable at the commencement of court proceedings in the County Court. You will be responsible to reimburse this, and if the sum is large we may ask you to remit it to us in advance of starting the proceedings. The amount of the court fee depends on the amount that you claim. Currently the fee to commence a claim of not more than £1,000 is £70.
Further details about court fees can be found on
If a debtor does not respond to the proceedings then you will obtain a judgment which can be enforced. We will charge at an hourly rate for work done in relation to enforcement action. In addition further court fees may be payable.
The overall cost of a debt recovery case where the debtor does not pay the debt (even when judgment has been obtained) depends on the amount of work done to  to enforce the judgment. There are various different enforcement processes that may be effective. We will advise you about the procedures and the related costs for these elements as appropriate.
Our debt recovery lawyers include Claire Gibb (hourly rate £195 + vat), who qualified as a solicitor in 2013 and has undertaken civil court work including debt recovery ever since, and Jeremy Pickworth (hourly rate £250 + vat), a solicitor-advocate, who qualified in 1981.
The earlier a debt is passed to us, the earlier we can collect it on your behalf, which means it will be working for you, not your creditors.
For more information, or to discuss an unpaid debt, please contact Jeremy Pickworth on 01937 547 001 or email

News From Our Blog

Coronavirus - update

Please be advised in accordance with Government guidelines we have taken the difficult yet important decision to prioritise our staff and clients’ health and wellbeing in light of the Coronavirus. As such we have made temporary changes to our working patterns. Please be assured so far as is possible we are still operating ‘business as usual’ although to protect everyone, we are now largely working from home and conducting meetings remotely/electronically. In order to minimise any potential risk to our staff and our valued clients, our main office will not be open to the public and we would appreciate where possible, any correspondence to be sent via email to your case manager directly or to our central address which is
Please avoid sending any payments by cheque and instead send all payments directly to us via bank transfer or make payments over the telephone to 01937 547004.
Please note any emails and/or telephone calls to your case manager will still be accessed as normal and your case will be progressed.  We are sure that you understand in the current circumstances, your case may be passed on to an alternative fee earner.
Please also note than any email communication during this time will automatically be copied to one of our partners as well as your case manager. 
Our central office telephone number 01937 547000 is still being operated as normal during our business hours of 9am to 5.30 pm Monday to Friday.
On behalf of all of the partners and team at Hartlaw LLP, we thank you for your continued support during these difficult times. Please be assured we remain committed to providing the highest quality of service and legal advice to our clients and the local community and we hope that you all stay safe and look after each other.