If your debtor fails to complete the outstanding claim amicably and you decide to take legal action, then you will need a court summons. A court summons serves as a notice about court proceedings and informs your debtor that they are being sued. Depending on which country your debtor is located in, a court summons must be served by the local court. For this, you will need a debt collection lawyer.
Drafting a court summons
Initiating legal proceedings will always start with a court summons. This document describes the claim and states when the counterparty should appear in court. In order to do so, you will need a debt collection lawyer to draft the court summons on your behalf.
Serving a court summons
After a court summons has been drafted, it can then be served by either a bailiff or a sheriff depending on the laws in which litigation is taking place. This means that the document is officially handed over to the counterparty. A court summons is only valid if it is personally delivered by for example a bailiff. If the court summons is transferred via e-mail, then it considered invalid.
Which court is competent?
Depending on the competent court, you first have to determine which court has jurisdiction. In most cases, this is the court in the country your debtor is located. Have other agreements been made in your general terms and conditions? Then litigation can also take place in your country.
How should the counterparty reply?
When the counterparty has received the court order, they have 6 weeks to submit a defence. In a statement of defence, the counterparty will explain points they agree and disagree with. In addition, they can also submit a counterclaim, if for example, they have suffered from damages. After this written exchange, a court hearing will take place.
Ordinary summons proceedings
Both parties will be asked to present their cases in court. In most cases, the judge will try to settle the case and reach a final verdict. If more information or evidence is needed the case can be extended.
Can a debtor ignore a court summons?
Your debtor cannot ignore a court summons. If they do, then the court can automatically rule that your debtor is in default and is requested to pay the outstanding amount.
What can we do for you?
- Draft court summons in the same language as your debtor
- Adjust court summons according to your needs
- Knowlege on judicial procedures in your debtor's country
- Knowledge on international debt collection procedures
- Contacts with international bailiffs and private detectives
What can our international specialists do for you?
Sending a court summons is usually the last step before legal action is undertaken. Our debt collection specialists can help you draft a court summons. Most importantly, our native in-house specialists will draft the court summons in the same language as your debtor. Contact us today for more information.