Debt Recovery Solicitors

Our debt recovery solicitors, working from offices in Manchester and London, offer a streamlined service to assist you in recovering unpaid invoices from both businesses and individuals.

We understand that chasing payment of outstanding invoices can be a difficult and time-consuming process.

We aim to take away this burden and offer a fixed fee debt recovery service to provide certainty.

We can be instructed at any stage and we can also help in relation to enforcement options.

Our services include the following. This is not meant to be an exhaustive list and we will discuss your requirements on a case-by-case basis:

  • Advice on the most appropriate options for recovering the debt and the enforcement options which may be available
  • Drafting demand letters
  • Issuing legal proceedings
  • Advising you on suitable alternative dispute resolution and settlement negotiations
  • Guiding you through the process of legal proceedings and preparing all the required court documentation
  • Preparing for trial
  • Attending trial

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Fixed fees for debt recovery

We can offer a fixed fee service in relation to unpaid invoices which are not disputed by the other party.  Discounts for volume instructions can be agreed.

Our fixed fees are shown below:-



Fees excluding VAT*


To review initial documents, draft and issue our Letter of Claim




Preparation and issue of Court proceedings




Application to Court for Default Judgment




*VAT is payable at the standard rate currently 20%


Our demand letters to individuals require a 30-day response window, for companies this is reduced to 7 days. In the event that legal proceedings are issued the timescales are as follows:-

Stage Timescale
Service of the claim on the debtor


     5 days


Deadline for the debtor to file an acknowledgment of service


     14 days


In absence of the acknowledgment of service, the date of which we can apply for default judgment


     15 days


If an acknowledgment of service has been filed the deadline for the debtor to file a formal defence *


     14 days


*If the debtor files a formal defence we will require further instructions on the disputed claim (please refer to the Disputed Debt Recovery section below as our fees will then be charged on a time-spent basis).


We have provided approximations of the timescales involved for each stage. However, there are a number of factors which can impact upon timescales.

These can include:

  • The length of time the debtor may take to respond to correspondence;
  • Whether the parties require more time for negotiation;
  • How quickly the Court may process paperwork;
  • Availability of court dates;
  • Whether the parties require more time to deal with certain steps within the proceedings.

Likely fees

Disputed claims are charged on an hourly rate basis and vary depending on the complexity of the legal and factual issues as well as the amount of documents involved.  As a guide, our fees for reviewing your initial paperwork and preparing a letter of claim would be in the region of £525 – £900 plus VAT but this may vary depending on the afore-mentioned.

Once we have undertaken our initial review, we will provide you with an estimate of future cost and any expenses which we pay on your behalf to others which may include court fees; expert witness fees and barristers’ fees.  These will be agreed with you in advance.

For debts up to £100,000, fees up to and including trial can range between £10,000 and £30,000 or more but we will always discuss the cost/ benefit analysis of such fees.  The hourly rates of our solicitors are shown below:



Hourly rate excluding VAT*






Associate Solicitors








Trainee Solicitors




*VAT is payable at the standard rate currently 20%

Disbursements & Additional Fees

Disbursements are fees you are required to pay to others during the debt recovery process. These may include court fees, barristers’ fees, experts’ fees, process servers’ fees and bailiff fees.

Court fees

When issuing proceedings, a court fee is payable in addition to our fees. The court fee is dependent on the amount you are seeking to recover. Please see the below table detailing the fees payable:-

Claim amount


Court fee*


Up to £300




Up to £500




Up to £1,000




Up to £1,500




Up to £3,000




Up to £5,000




Up to £10,000




Up to £100,000


     5% of the claim


Up to £200,000


     5% of the claim


More than £200,000




*There is no VAT payable on Court fees

Barristers and Experts

Barristers’ fees, experts’ fees, process server fees and bailiff fees are all dependent on the nature of work they are instructed to undertake.  Their fees and timescales are estimated on a case-by-case basis.

We will obtain estimates and seek your approval of their fees before we formally instruct on your behalf.

Our Fixed Fee Debt Recovery Service is for undisputed debts only.  Should the debt become disputed, we will charge on an hourly rate basis which we will discuss and agree with you.  We provide further information on this below.

Disputed Debt Recovery

Not all debt recovery matters are equal.  The process of recovering a disputed debt can be complex and if a dispute has arisen, Slater Heelis has dedicated dispute resolution solicitors to help you.

In the event that legal proceedings are issued, we refer you to our “Timeline” section above. Please note that there are additional stages required within proceedings if it is a disputed debt.

The deadlines for the additional stages are set by the court as the matter proceeds however we estimate the possible timescales below:-

Stage Timescale
Up to and including issuing proceedings


     4-8 weeks


Up to and including Costs and Case Management Conference


     8 weeks


Up to including of Disclosure and Inspection


     8 weeks


Up to Service of Witness Statements and Expert Reports


     10 weeks


Up to and including Pre-Trial Review (PTR)


     8 weeks


Up to Trial


     8 weeks



Related Services

Corporate Insolvency

Debt recovery can be essential to accurately and effectively consolidating a businesses assets during the insolvency process.

Meet The Team

Talk to one of our team
members on 0161 969 3131