Research shows that 30% of bankruptcies in the Netherlands are caused by unpaid invoices. Does your company have a customer who still hasn’t paid? Or are you a private individual and do you have a debtor who still owes you money? Then contact the Law & More debt collection lawyers.
Debt collection law
Research shows that 30% of bankruptcies in the Netherlands are caused by unpaid invoices. Does your company have a customer who still hasn’t paid? Or are you a private individual and do you have a debtor who still owes you money? Then contact the Law & More debt collection lawyers. We understand that unpaid invoices are very annoying and undesirable, which is why we assist you from the beginning to the end of the collection process. Our debt collection lawyers can go through both an extrajudicial collection procedure and a judicial collection procedure with you. Law & More is also familiar with the law of attachment and can assist you in the event of bankruptcy. Finally, it makes no difference to us whether the debtor lives in the Netherlands or is established abroad. Because of our international background, we are qualified for more complex, disputed or larger claims.
When it comes to debt collection, you are probably thinking of a debt collection agency or bailiff than of a debt collection lawyer. This is because all three parties are able to collect outstanding debts. However, there are some essential steps in the collection process that in general can be carried out by a debt collection lawyer:
• Only a debt collection lawyer is authorised to conduct legal proceedings for claims above € 25.000,00.
• Authorised to seize the estate and the income of a debtor
• Only a debt collection lawyer is authorised to file a bankruptcy petition.
• Only a debt collection lawyer is authorised to handle international debt collection cases.
• Qualified to resolve legal disputes. A debt-collection lawyer is more suitable to provide customised solutions and to evaluate and rebut the defences.
It often happens that during a collection process, it is still necessary to change from a collection agency or bailiff to a collection lawyer. In such situation it is easier and more organized to be at one and the same firm straight away, where you are already known and a file has already been built up for you.
The four steps of the collection right
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Are you dealing with a non-paying customer? Contact Law & More
Notice of default
We request the debtor to pay by means of a notice of default
We arrange negotiations in order to make the debtor pay or to make a payment arrangement
We start a legal proceeding and seize property if necessary
“I have received
within the agreed time.”
The approach of the debt collection agency
For each collection procedure, a number of steps have to be taken. The first step is to inform the debtor that he is not fulfilling his payment obligation. This is because you must give him the opportunity to pay within a reasonable period of time without any further costs. You must send the debtor a written reminder to this effect. This reminder is called a notice of default. A period of fourteen days is normally regarded as a reasonable period within which the debtor is requested to pay the claim. Of course, Law & More’s lawyers can draw up a notice of default for you.
If no notice of default has been sent, the judge will reject any claim for damages. However, there are situations in which it is not necessary to send a notice of default, e.g. compliance with the agreement is permanently impossible. Nevertheless, it is advisable to always send a notice of default as a precaution. If the request for payment is not complied with, we can start the collection process.
The phases of the collection process
There are two possible stages in the collection process: the amicable stage, also known as the extrajudicial stage, and the judicial stage..
If the relationship between the parties is good, it is advisable to first go through the amicable phase. In this phase, we try to encourage the debtor to pay by means of written reminders and telephone contact. It is possible that these discussions and negotiations will lead to a payment arrangement. We recommend that a payment arrangement be laid down. Our debt collection lawyers can take care of this. The advantage of an amicable phase is that the relationship between the parties is often not damaged and that no costs for legal proceedings are owed.
If the amicable stage cannot be concluded with a payment by the debtor or with a payment arrangement, legal proceedings can be initiated. It is also possible to skip the amicable stage and start legal proceedings immediately. In a legal phase, we claim payment of the outstanding amounts and collection costs before the court. Before the legal proceedings are started, it may be possible to seize the debtor’s property. This is called conservatory seizure. Prejudgment attachment is intended to ensure that the debtor is unable to move property before the court has ruled, so that you can actually recover your costs from the debtor. If the judge assigns your claim, the precautionary attachment will be converted into an enforceable attachment. This means that the assets attached may be sold by the bailiff in public if the debtor is still not paying. The proceeds of these assets will be used to pay your claim. Law & More’s debt collection lawyers have experience in the field of attachment law and are happy to assist you during the legal proceedings.
Law & More also provides support to prevent risks related to payment and late payment. For example, we advise clients to include in their general terms and conditions payment terms that can avoid ambiguities in the event of late payment. Would you like more information about this? Please contact the debt collection lawyers of Law & More.