Debt Recovery

Non or late payment of outstanding invoices can severely impact cashflow and put severe strain on a business.

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Reducing the risk of financial exposure from bad debts

It is important to ensure you are on the front foot and first in line when attempting to recover what is due to you for goods and services supplied to your customer.

At Higgs, we have a team of experts with excellent experience and a first-in-class track record in advising businesses of all sizes across a range of industries on how to reduce the risk of financial exposure from bad debts.

We are committed to providing bespoke, comprehensive legal solutions to businesses and our overriding aims are to maximise the recovery potential as soon as possible to minimilise any potential loss, and to do this as cost effectively as possible.

We are passionate about business, we care about our clients and the strength of Higgs lies in our holistic approach. As a broad-service firm, we can call upon our expert colleagues within the wider firm for legal issues that cross into different specialisms, ensuring that we remain a one-stop shop for all needs.

A letter from a solicitors firm should always get the attention of the stakeholders in a debtor’s business, so when done in conjunction with experienced professionals, you are in the right hands with Higgs.

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Our services

Our debt recovery team will work with you to fully understand your business and the nature of the debt before embarking on the recovery process, to ensure the most appropriate process from our wealth of experience is appropriate.

We utilise a legal case and matter management software system to progress matters, so whether a single debtor, regular multiple debtors or whole ledger collection is referred, our technology will ensure the process is efficient and cost effective.


Whether the debt is slightly overdue or not yet even due for payment, we can offer a suite of letters supported by telephone calls as a “soft touch” to encourage your customer to pay its debt on time.

Pre-legal recovery

We will send a pre-action protocol compliant letter of claim to the debtor which will include a copy of the invoices or a statement of account and any further documentation relevant to the debt we are attempting to recover. The letter of claim will be structured to inform the debtor of how the debt arose, what it needs to do within 14 days (pay the demanded sum, make proposals to pay or provide substantive evidence in support of a dispute) and inform of the consequences of not responding

The demanded sum in letter of claim will include added interest, compensation and reasonable recovery costs in accordance with the Late Payment of Commercial Debts (Interest) Act 1998.

We will follow up the letter (by telephone or e-mail) to ensure the debtor is given every opportunity to engage with us on your behalf, to attempt to recover in full or reach settlement before progressing the matter.

Legal recovery

Our legal case and matter management software system has a direct electronic link with the County Court Business Centre, which means we can submit a legal claim then it will be issued and sent direct by the Court to the debtor the next workday.

The claim submitted on your behalf will include further costs and interest in accordance with the Late Payment of Commercial Debts (Interest) Act 1998.

The debtor will be provided with 21 days (7 days for service and 14 days response time) to notify us or the Court of its intentions, failing which, we will request that the Court enters a CCJ in your favour through our matter management system.

If the legal claim is defended by the debtor, we will provide you with an advice note on the merit of the attempt to engage to determine whether settlement  

"Higgs has a well-organised and comprehensive litigation team. Their size and coverage of specialist litigation services makes them a top go-to practice for litigation in the West Midlands"

Legal 500


We will have already considered the enforcement of a CCJ ahead of obtaining it but for a commercial or business debt, we will typically instruct the High Court Enforcement Office (“HCEO”) on your behalf.

Once transferred from the County Court to the High Court, an officer will send a Notice of Enforcement letter to the debtor to provide 7 days for payment, failing which, an Officer will attend the debtor premises to collect payment or levy on any goods or assets for remove and sale at auction.


The insolvency process is not a debt recovery tool, however where a debtor has not responded to correspondence from us or from the Court, it may be considered that in accordance with sections 122 and 123 (sections 267 and 268 for an individual) of The Insolvency Act 1986, they are technically insolvent as they cannot pay its debts as they fall due.

A Statutory Demand is a formal document drafted and served at the debtor’s registered office address (on the debtor in person if an individual), to notify that in the event payment or agreed proposals for payment are received within 21 days of service, a winding up (bankruptcy for an individual) petition may be filed at Court for an Order to wind up the company (bankrupt the individual).

"The firm is noted for its activity on contractual claims and fraud cases, with further expertise in director and shareholder disputes and breach of warranty issues."

Chambers and Partners


We structure our fees so that you are clear on the cost of the service you need. We will work on a fixed fee basis wherever possible for standard undefended pre-legal and legal action, but we’ll discuss the best options for you and your business; that could be a fixed fee basis, no-recovery no-fee option or a time spent basis. Our standard fees structure may be found in the document at the bottom of this page

Wherever possible, we look to recover some or all costs by applying interest and fixed charges to the debt in accordance with the Late Payment of Commercial Debts (Interest) Act 1998, or reasonable recovery costs in accordance with The Late Payment of Commercial Debts Regulations 2013. We will also discuss with you whether you have any contractual terms permitting the recovery of costs.

Why choose us as your debt recovery lawyers

We have an impressive and demonstrable track record of effective debt recovery, working with businesses of all sizes and perusing debts of all amounts.

Whereas some firms believe in a one-size-fits-all approach to debt recovery, we offer tailored and bespoke advice to all our clients. Wherever possible, we’ll seek an amicable resolution that is, most importantly, successful, but also cost effective, timely and provides an opportunity for an ongoing business relationship between you and your debtor.

Our pragmatic lawyers are keen to build long-term relationships with our clients and can call on the expertise of colleagues across all departments – including business services, commercial, dispute resolution and property – to give the very best advice.

Your business is precious to you. We can help you protect it and recover the money you are owed as painlessly as possible.

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Meet the debt recovery team

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