Birketts Debt Collectors Guide And Information

If you’re in debt, you might be anxious about receiving a letter from a debt collection firm. One such company operating in the UK is Birketts LLP (often known simply as Birketts). Whilst not a traditional debt collection agency, they are a firm of solicitors that act on behalf of creditors who are trying to collect outstanding debts.

You might already have heard from them and although this is likely to be a stressful time, there’s no need to panic. In this guide, we explore who Birketts LLP are and how they go about collecting debts.

Who are Birketts Debt Collectors?

Birketts LLP describes themselves as a “full debt recovery service” that act on behalf of numerous companies. They are a UK-based law firm who offer services that extend beyond debt recovery, although this is one of the areas that they are particularly well known for.

Why am I being contacted by Birketts Debt Collectors?

If you’ve received communications from them, it’s likely that you may be responsible for an outstanding debt. Your debt could be with another company that Birketts LLP are acting on behalf of, so you might not recognise their name at first.

Are Birketts debt collectors legitimate?

Birketts LLP is a legitimate firm of solicitors (operating under UK Company Number OC317545).

They act on behalf of other companies to collect outstanding debts, and whilst they are not authorised or regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority, they are regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA).

Are Birketts debt collectors regulated by the FCA?

Whilst Birketts LLP is not authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), they are classed as an ‘exempt professional firm’. Some companies (such as solicitors, accountants, and chartered surveyors) are permitted to provide certain regulated products and services without authorisation.

Nonetheless, Birketts can be found on the FCA’s register at the following link, under reference number LS441849. They are also regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA), and have firm reference number 441849.

What debts do Birketts collect?

As a private legal firm, there is little information available about the kinds of debts that Birketts collect. That being said, their website does state that they offer debt collection services to individuals and organisations alike, and so it follows that they deal with a variety of debt types.

What action can Birketts Debt Collectors Collections take?

Birketts debt collectors bailiffs

If you owe money, or if they are trying collecting money from you on behalf of another company, it might help to understand the steps they might take.

As per the contents of their website, Birketts offer their clients demand letters, debt recovery management services, and even court judgments. This indicates that they offer a service that is fairly similar to that provided by other debt collection firms, and debtors can expect Birketts to request payment in a variety of ways before progressing a matter to court. 

How to deal with Birketts Debt Collectors Collections?

The best course of action for dealing with Birketts will depend on your individual situation. Factors affecting how you respond might include whether you can afford to pay what you owe, or if you dispute the fact that you owe the debt at all.

In most cases, there are a few courses of action that you could take. These might include: paying Birketts LLP in full, making a part payment, agreeing to a payment plan, seeking to write off your debt by using an insolvency solution or, alternatively, disputing the fact that you owe money to Birketts Debt Collectors in the first instance.

How to check if you actually owe money?

It’s always good practice to check exactly what you owe before settling a debt or making any decisions, and it’s worth getting all the relevant information from Birketts LLP before paying them. On request, they should be able to confirm the source of your debt (i.e. the company that you owe money to), along with the total debt figure.

You can then double check any information provided them against your own personal records to make sure that you actually owe what they say you do.

Can they take you to court?

It is possible that Birketts LLP could take you to court in order to make a claim against you on behalf of their creditor clients. In most cases, any court action would see the company seeking a County Court Judgment (CCJ) formally confirming that you owe money to them or one of their clients. This is more likely to happen if you simply ignore Birketts’ attempts to contact you, or where you refuse to work with them to pay off what you owe.

Debt collectors are far more likely to work with debtors who communicate with them, and who show willingness to deal with any issues and pay off their outstanding debts. Ignoring the problem is unlikely to lead to a positive outcome.

Will debt collectors come to my house?

Birketts LLP could send a debt collector to your house if you fail to respond to their attempts to contact you. If this happens, keep in mind that debt collectors and bailiffs are quite different, and the former cannot force their way into your property. For more information on this, read our explanation of bailiffs and debt collectors later in this guide.

Do you have to let field agents from Birketts in?

You do not have to let field agents into your property, but you can choose to invite them in yourself. They do not have the power or authority to enter the property without your permission.

Can Birketts send bailiffs?

Anybody who receives a letter from a debt collector might be worried about bailiffs attending their address, but Birketts simply cannot send court bailiffs. They may instead send debt collectors, but they have far fewer powers than bailiffs and cannot enter your property or remove goods without your consent.

Bailiffs could be sent to your home to enforce a County Court Judgment (CCJ) if you have not kept up with court ordered payments, but the company cannot send bailiffs themselves.

Do Birketts Debt Collectors buy debts?

Birketts LLP act on behalf of other organisations who have outstanding debts to collect. This means that if you have been contacted by Birketts, it may be that they have been appointed to collect the money you owe for one of their clients.

Can I stop Birketts Debt Collectors Collections from contacting me?

You won’t be able to stop Birketts from contacting you completely unless you engage with a formal debt solution such as a Debt Relief Order (DRO) or an Individual Voluntary Arrangement (IVA). These will prohibit your creditors from contacting you to chase for repayment of outstanding debts whilst providing a route towards repaying or writing off some of what you owe.

Birketts Debt Collectors can still contact you unless a solution such as those described above is in place, but you can express your contact preferences. You might ask for all communications to be put in writing rather than receiving phone calls, for example.

How to write off my debt with Birketts?

Birketts are unlikely to write your debt off, but they and their clients might consider any full and final settlement figures that are put to them even if they are less than the total figure owed. If a full and final settlement offer is accepted, debtors may wish to request written confirmation that no further action will be taken against them prior to making the payment.

They may also agree to payment plans in some circumstances, and this could be an option if you cannot afford to settle what you owe outright. If you feel that a payment plan could suit your circumstances, getting in touch with Birketts could help you to get the ball rolling.

Generally, it is only possible to write off debt via a formal insolvency solution.

How to contact Birketts Debt Collectors

Effective communication is essential when you’re dealing with debt. Contact with Birketts should be made via the details provided on any correspondence they send to you, however if you are unsure you check their details on the FCA Register.

Full Company Name: Birketts LLP

Website: www.birketts.co.uk

Office address:

Providence House
141 – 145 Princes Street
Ipswich IP1 1QJ

How to complain?

Technically speaking, Birketts act as legal advisors to their debt collection clients and so it may be the case that any complaints are better off being addressed to the creditor involved.

To find out more about the complaints process, you might find it useful to contact the individual listed on any correspondence you have received from Birketts.

Finally, if you feel that your complaint has not been deal with in a satisfactory or fair way, you may wish to refer the complaint to the Financial Ombudsman Service. Not all complaints fall within the Ombudsman’s jurisdiction, but those that do must be brought to their attention within six months of Birketts LLP issuing their own response. The Financial Ombudsman Service can be contacted via telephone (0300 1239 123) or email (complaint.info@financial-ombudsman.org.uk), and more information is available on their website at: www.financial-ombudsman.org.uk.

Bottom line

Birketts LLP are a UK-based firm of solicitors that act on behalf of their clients to collect outstanding debts. If you’ve been contacted by the company, try not to panic. The information in this guide sets out who they are and how they work, so you can focus on dealing with the situation and moving forward.

Frequently Asked Questions

Does HMRC use Birketts?

No – Birketts do not currently act in respect debt collection matters for HMRC. HMRC uses a number of private debt collection agencies, and a complete list can be found on their website.

Who owns Birketts debt collectors?

Birketts LLP is a Limited Liability Partnership, collectively owned and managed by the partners of the firm. These individuals (mostly solicitors) are listed on Birketts’ profile on Companies House.

Do they accept credit card payments?

It may be possible to make a debt repayment to Birketts using a credit card, and more information about this will be contained within their letters and communications.

Keep in mind that paying with a credit card may see you incur interest and charges from your card provider, making the debt more expensive altogether.

Can Birketts take my car?

Birketts LLP cannot immobilise your car or take it in full or part payment of a debt, except in cases where that debt is secured over the vehicle.

Can Birketts sell my home?

Birketts LLP could sell your home, but this really isn’t that likely. They would need to take you to court to seek a County Court Judgement against you, unless the money you owe relates to a debt secured against your property such as a mortgage. If a CCJ was granted against you, they would still need to seek a charging order for your home to be sold.

How long can Birketts debt collectors legally chase a debt for?

Under the Limitation Act 1980, creditors have six years to chase the majority of unsecured debts – and the period begins from the date of your last payment or acknowledgement of the debt. Once this period has elapsed, Birketts LLP will not be able to take legal action against you to enforce the debt.

Can Birketts issue a warrant?

No, they cannot issue a warrant, but a court may do so if a CCJ has been granted against you.

Can I ignore Birketts Debt Collectors?

You may think that Birketts (or their clients) will simply forgive or forget about your debt if you ignore them for long enough, but they could escalate the matter. This might involve sending a debt collector to your home in an attempt to convince you to pay up.

If these tactics don’t work, they could take the matter to court to seek a County Court Judgment (CCJ). If this is granted, you will be required to pay up and failing to do so could lead to a visit from the court bailiffs.

Should you ignore a letter of claim from Birketts?

If Birketts or their clients decide to seek a CCJ against you, they will first issue a ‘letter of claim’ which will set out exactly what you owe and confirm that they intend to commence legal proceedings. Debtors should have 30 days to respond to a letter of claim and a reply form will often be sent with the letter.

Once legal action has started, debtors can expect to receive documentation directly from the Court. If you fail to act on official CCJ documentation received from the County Court, bailiffs may be instructed to visit your home.

Can Birketts Debt Collectors recover debts during the coronavirus?

The COVID-19 pandemic has had a huge impact on the way we all live our lives, and many people are struggling to cope financially. Debt collection firms are still operating, but they may be more willing to consider difficult individual circumstances or to work with struggling debtors.

Contact is key, so make any concerns you have known and don’t be afraid to get in touch with your creditors.

What if I can’t afford to pay Birketts?

If you’re struggling to cope with your financial situation, help is on hand. In the event that you’ve received a letter or another communication from Birketts LLP, don’t feel that you have to pay up without taking time to consider your position. The organisations listed below can provide free and impartial advice that could help you to make sense of your situation:

Last Updated on December 17, 2020