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Is the Small Claims Court a complete waste of time

It seems like using the Small Claims Court is worse than trying to get blood out of a stone

We have been trying to persue our first probable bad debt (for £600) over the last 6 months. We have been directed to do it via HM Courts and Tribunals service Moneyclaim online and it just seems to be going on forwever.

We put the original claim in online at the end of June. It was acknowledged immediately. The defendant did not respond at all, so we then applied for judgement at the beginning of September on the N225 form but not heard a peep since.

How long does this process usually go on for; is there a better way and I do wonder if there is any point to the process because he is likely to come back and say he can only afford £10 a month or something stupid.

Just wondered how other colleagues chased for money?

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30th Oct 2017 11:05

Worked for me - my son (Stupidly) overpaid an invoice. Not getting a reply from the seller I used the online claims system. You will have set up an on line claim reference and should get the option to proceed to judgement if the culprit has not answered the initial claim (they get 30 days from memory). It's fairly easy. We got judgement and they paid up including a year's worth of interest.

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30th Oct 2017 11:29

I always do it via Thomas Higgins as they issue all the correctly worded 7 day letters etc and only cost about £3 to issue them.

There on line system is very good and if the other side doesn't reply you just push the button to obtain the judgment, then use their collection agent to get the money which the debtor pays the cost of.

For £600 you dont want to spend much of your time but I find this is a quick and efficient way of getting paid as 9/10 people would pay once they get the 7 day letter.

The problem you have is if the offer side file a defence as it will then go to a hearing and then the £600 becomes hard fought for as you will probably spend most of the day sitting around in court.

I think the rules are changing around small claims soon though and the encourage mediation more to settle without court input.

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30th Oct 2017 11:46

On behalf of others, I have done three of these so far, over a number of years.

The latest was started in April 2017 and was finally concluded a few weeks ago. There was a point, like you, where I had not heard anything so I phoned the court service and they said they had a backlog.

Whatever method you use – via yourself or someone else – to recover the money, I think it is worth persevering. Just draw on your reserves of patience!

Maybe call the court service to see how the claim is progressing?

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to jimmyxyz
30th Oct 2017 12:08

jimmyxyz wrote:

On behalf of others, I have done three of these so far, over a number of years.

The latest was started in April 2017 and was finally concluded a few weeks ago. There was a point, like you, where I had not heard anything so I phoned the court service and they said they had a backlog.

Whatever method you use – via yourself or someone else – to recover the money, I think it is worth persevering. Just draw on your reserves of patience!

Maybe call the court service to see how the claim is progressing?

Same for me, used it many times and in most cases worked fine but, per above, had to call them a few times and always resolved the issue or reassured me that just normal admin delays.

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30th Oct 2017 12:13

MoneyClaim online has been simple enough in the past.

Don't forget however that for certain claims from 01/10/2017 you now have to comply with the pre-action protocol before commencing a claim.

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30th Oct 2017 12:24

Many thanks

Just need to be a bit patient!!

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