When a company or individual is refusing to pay their debts, the instinctive reaction is to take them to court and force them to pay. The problem is, not enough people stop to think about why they’re not paying their debts. If it’s because that individual or company is in financial difficulties, then you need to tread carefully.
Why? Because it’s all very well going to court, winning your case and getting a judgment in your favour in respect of the debt. In most cases, that’s the easy part. Enforcement is where it gets difficult. Enforcing the judgment is making the defendant pay. However, if the defendant is bankrupt or insolvent, you need to ask yourself this question: where is the money coming from? The courts cannot conjure up money to settle debts; it must come from the debtor. If there is no cash that the defendant company or individual can place their hands on, then you need to think about assets.
Assets can be seized from a defendant and sold at auction to settle a debt. Sounding good so far? What if the assets don’t cover the debt? What if the defendant literally has no more money – cash or capital? The simple answer is, your debt doesn’t get paid.
Well, not quite…
Answering the problem: asset tracking
You don’t want to hit a wall when trying to enforce your judgment. If you have any doubts about whether your debtor will be able to settle the debt after you win your case, consult a private investigator and talk about asset tracking or asset tracing.
Private investigators who are asset trackers will tell you all the advantages of making sure you know the status of your debtor before initiating court proceedings. Asset tracking involves a variety of investigative methods, including searches and asset tracking software, to assess whether a debtor has enough capital in assets to be able to settle the debt if those assets were seized. Searches look at property owned in the UK and overseas, stocks and shares, vehicles and marine purchases, businesses, even undeclared bank accounts in some jurisdictions and much more. Asset tracking gives you a better picture of the person you’re going after, and how far you’re likely to succeed.
Tracking hidden assets
Hiding assets is something that is done by debtors who are particularly reluctant to pay and want to protect what is theirs. Of course, if they’re refusing to pay someone what they legally owe, then ‘what is theirs’ is up for debate. This is why global’ s private investigator asset trackers are specialists in finding hidden assets using many sophisticated techniques, so that the courts, the claimants and the enforcers have a complete picture of how much the debtor is worth, and how best we can get the debts and remuneration enforced.
Asset tracking post-judgment
While it is advisable to call on the services of specialist asset trackers at private detective agencies like Global Investigations before you initiate court proceedings, nothing is stopping you from doing it post-judgment. If you have for some reason elected not to do asset tracking at the outset, you can still get a private investigator to do a report about your debtor’s assets after you have won the case. This is so you know which assets to go after, and how much of the debt you’re likely to get back. The risk for you is that the private investigators’ report could yield little to nothing in the way of assets to cover your debt and costs.
Your best bet is to contact a private investigation firm like Global Investigations before you take your debtor to court.