How can my business sue someone to recover money?

Feb 28, 2024 | Publication

Lawyers are often asked about the process of recovering money owed as a result of, for instance, a failure to pay for goods or services or a breach of contract.

Normally a business (or an individual) will issue a letter of demand as a precursor to suing someone to recovery money.

It is not strictly necessary to issue a letter of demand normally, however it is generally good practice to do so.

The letter of demand will normally give a deadline for payment.  If payment is not received, legal proceedings may be commenced.  A well written letter of demand can recover money quickly.

In New South Wales, the Supreme Court of NSW, the District Court of NSW and Local Court of NSW deal with most claims to recover money depending upon the precise amount of money that is owed.

If no satisfactory response is received to the letter of demand, a Statement of Claim can be filed in the Court.

The Statement of Claim sets out in detail the parties to the claim, the basis for the claim, how the claim arises and the relief sought.

The Statement of Claim is filed with the Court and then served on the defendant (the party that owes the money).

If the defendant takes no action within 28 days of service, an application for default judgment can be made to the Court.

Once default judgment is obtained, the judgment of the Court can be enforced.

Various options exist for enforcing a judgment including issuing a statutory demand, commencing winding up proceedings and the appointment of a liquidator, issuing a bankruptcy notice, applying for a garnishee order against wages or accounts, applying for a writ, issuing an examination notice and applying for an examination order.

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