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Find out more about debt resolution

What is business debt recovery?

Traditional business debt recovery typically involves a debt collection agency chasing a business for money they owe to another business. If a customer has failed to pay you, even after you’ve sent them a reminder letter and possibly a solicitor’s letter, you might at this stage enlist a debt collection agency to collect payment on your behalf.

What is debt resolution and who is Ko-bolt?

Debt resolution is a more collaborative approach to debt collection and differs from traditional business debt recovery. Ko-bolt seek to preserve the trading relationships between you and your customers. If you place a debt with Ko-bolt, their team will open up a dialogue with your customer and offer expert support. If your customer is unable to repay you in full immediately, Ko-bolt will work with them to define an affordable repayment plan. They can also help your customers to recover funds from their own customers – cash flow problems are a common source of supply chain bad debt.

Is it free to use Ko-bolt for debt resolution?

Yes. You can place a debt with Ko-bolt on a ‘no collection, no commission’ basis, so if you don’t get paid, neither does Ko-bolt.
There are no joining fees, annual fees or placement fees. Under the Late Payment of Commercial Debts (interest) Act 1998 and the Debt Regulations Act 2013, Ko-bolt is able to add its collection costs to the debt and when it collects its fees from the customer, you’re only liable for the VAT, and any interest Ko-bolt recover is 100% yours.

How can I minimise late payments and bad debt?

• Know your customer – not every business can credit check their customers but nothing is stopping you from obtaining as much information as possible about them (including whether they are a sole trader, a limited company or a partnership).

• Keep a signed order form on record.

• Make sure your customers know your payment terms (draw their attention to the payment terms section in your terms and conditions).

• Tighten your credit control procedures: as soon as payment is late, send a seven-day demand for payment and follow this up immediately with a phone call which should help clear any disputes or issues with the invoice.

• After your credit control period has ended, pass the debt over to a business debt recovery agency such as Ko-bolt.

• Consider trade credit insurance – or flexible invoice insurance – as a way to protect yourself from the risk of bad debt

When should I get a business debt collection agency involved?

The sooner you start the debt resolution process, the greater the chance of recovering your debt without legal action. It is recommended that you enlist Ko-bolt (by placing your debt) at or around 60 days after an invoice was due. It’s worth noting that Ko-bolt has more success collecting costs when the debt is placed early.

You’ll want to try and legal action because it can be costly and time-consuming – and it could be a long time before you receive your money.

Who does my customer pay?

Your customer is encouraged to pay directly to Ko-bolt. This gives Ko-bolt transparency over any incoming payments.

How long does the debt collection process take?

A typical non-contested debt collection process typically takes less than 21 days with Ko-bolt.

How do I start the debt recovery process?

Step 1: Register for your free Ko-bolt account (Swoop discount automatically applied).

Step 2: Once registered you can place a debt. 

Step 3: Ko-bolt reviews your information for, amount other things, regulatory compliance.

Step 4: Ko-bolt issues your customer with a written request for payment, which summarises the debt value, plus interest and charges.

Step 5:  Ko-bolt’s debt resolution team contacts your customer by phone to discuss their liquidity position and negotiate the best solution for all parties.

Step 6: If your buyer has not responded Ko-bolt issues a written final demand – this is the final opportunity for your customer to respond before Ko-bolt engages a solicitor to recover the debt.

Step 7:  Ko-bolt’s specialist legal partner sends a Letter Before Action (LBA) to your customer, at no cost to you. This is a legal requirement before legal action can take place and is very effective at engaging the customer.

Step 8: If you still haven’t been paid, Ko-bolt pursues payment via legal action, which may involve the issue of a Statutory Demand or a County Court Summons. A solicitor will review your file before making their recommendation on the best course of action – they will not take any action without your authority.

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