Debt collection in The Netherlands

Debt Collection in the Netherlands

Although Dutch customers are one of the better payers in Europe, debt collection in the Netherlands still frequently occurs. With effective measures to collect your unpaid invoices in the Netherlands, our debt collection specialists and lawyers can explain everything you need to know for successful debt recovery in the Netherlands. For example, the bankruptcy petition is one of the most common procedures in the Netherlands, one that is also very easy to initiate when dealing with debt collection in the Netherlands. If your Dutch debtor has left you with an unpaid invoice, then don’t delay your case further and take action today. With Europe’s leading debt collection agency and law firm by your side, we can solve your debt collection in the Netherlands.
Submit your case before 16.00 pm and we will act today!

Recover your unpaid invoices in the Netherlands in 7 simple steps

  • Step 1: Within two minutes you can make a start on your debt collection in the Netherlands. All you have to do is enter your details, your debtor’s details and relevant information regarding your case. You can do so here.
  • Step 2: Our debt collection specialist will then conduct a thorough investigation by using local databases. With the help of registers, our specialist can assess the credit rating of your debtor. In doing so, we can make a calculated decision on the next steps that need to be taken.
  • Step 3: Your Dutch caseworker will then draft an aanmaningsbrief, which is a demand letter. This demand letter will inform your Dutch debtor of the outstanding amount and request them to pay. Moreover, it will be written in Dutch and customised according to your case.
  • Step 4: Your Dutch caseworker will reach out to you. Together you can determine how you wish to have your debtor approached. You can also track the status of your case 24/7 through our online portal.
  • Step 5: Should your Dutch debtor fail to respond to our aanmaningsbrief, then our efforts don’t just stop there. We will also contact your debtor by phone. Based on our experience, we know that your debtor is more likely to pay. Often this puts the debtor off guard, and we clear any miscommunication.
  • Step 6: We can also pay your Dutch debtor a visit. With our contracts and private detectives across the Netherlands, we can further investigate your debtor.
  • Step 7: With the help of our debt collection lawyers, we can solve 95% of the cases we solve in the extrajudicial phase without court intervention. But if your debtor still thinks he can get away with your payment, then we have more strategies in store for your Dutch debtor.
Submit your case before 16.00 pm and we will act today!

Dutch speaking lawyers: meet your trusted experts

Founded in Veghel, the Netherlands, Bierens Debt Recovery lawyers is the household name for debt collection in the Netherlands. Established in 1952, Bierens has over 70 years’ worth of B2B debt recovery knowledge and experience in the Netherlands. With our headquarters in Veghel and international team in Amsterdam, we can help you with debt collection across the Netherlands.

Moreover, with a team of over 115+ experts, there is always an experienced lawyer who knows the ins and out of debt collection within different industries. By combining the knowledge and experience of our native Dutch lawyers and our international team, we are able to overcome any language and cultural barriers for cross-border debt collection cases. With their hands-on legal experience, they can tell you everything you need to know on legal procedures for your debt collection in the Netherlands.

Free advice from the best debt collection specialists

Yes, I agree with the Privacy statement
  • Fast solutions for your cases
  • Real measures to recover your payments
  • The best results for the lowest costs

No Win No Fee debt collection agency in the Netherlands

Did you know that with Bierens by your side, you receive the quality of a debt collection lawyer for the price of a debt collection agency in the Netherlands? With more resources than regular debt collection agencies in the Netherlands, we can solve your debt collection in the Netherlands on a No Win No Fee basis. The best part is, if we manage to collect the entire principal including interest and costs, then you do not have to pay an additional fee. You will not lose out on your payment as you keep the principal amount, while we keep the interest and costs. You can view a complete overview of our fees here.

No win No fee
Bailiff in The Netherlands

Bailiff in the Netherlands

As a debt collection law firm, we have more legal possibilities than a bailiff or debt collection agency in the Netherlands. In order to have your debt collection judgement enforced, you will need a court order, which can only be obtained through a lawyer for high-value claims. Our Dutch lawyers will then instruct a bailiff. A bailiff in the Netherland is the only one who is authorised to enforce a judgement. This can include the seizure of your debtor’s income, wages, salaries or bank accounts and the foreclosure of movable and immovable properties. Under Dutch law, a bailiff in the Netherlands must be sworn in. While regular debt collection agencies in the Netherlands can only request the payment, they cannot enforce payment or initiate legal proceedings for high-value cases.

Dutch debt collection laws

Invoices in the Netherlands by default have a payment term of 30 days. If your Dutch debtor fails to pay in the amicable phase once the claim is due and payable, then we can proceed with taking legal action in consultation with you. Often, debt collection proceedings waste no time in recovering your unpaid invoices in the Netherlands. Our lawyers can explain more on Dutch debt collection laws.

Debt collection in The Netherlands
Bankruptcy

Bankruptcy petition in the Netherlands

The bankruptcy petition is one of the most effective means of debt collection in the Netherlands. The aim is not to have your debtor declared bankrupt, but to pressurise your debtor to pay. Because the stakes are much higher for debtors, they would want to avoid having been declared bankrupt at all costs. This means that Dutch debtors are more likely to pay their creditors with this debt collection measure.

Civil proceedings

Civil proceedings in the Netherlands often apply to heavily disputed cases. When initiating civil proceedings against your Dutch debtor, your debtor will be requested to present themselves in court. Both parties will have to defend their point of view with sound evidence. In most cases, the judge will encourage both parties to reach a settlement. Otherwise, a lengthy procedure awaits both parties. An average civil procedure may take between six to twelve months, while complicated procedures may even last up to two years. After that, an appeal can be lodged, which can again extend the case.

Disputed case
Summary proceedings

Summary proceedings

If you have a relatively simple claim, or if the duration of the proceedings on the merits would have irreversible consequences, then with the summary proceedings a verdict can be announced within a limited amount of time. It is a much faster alternative, whereby the claim is submitted to the courts. However, for monetary claims, these proceedings are only applicable for simple and lightly disputed claims.

Seizure of assets

If a Dutch client does not pay, our lawyers can have your debtor’s assets seized after acquiring an attachment order from the court. Your debtor will no longer be able to spend their funds in the run-up to a procedure and will be pressurised to pay the outstanding amount. A precautionary seizure can apply to monetary claims against the debtor's assets such as the bank accounts and moveable and immovable property. For more information and how to have your debtor's assets seized, contact our Dutch specialists.

Seizure of assets
International debt collection

International debt collection laws in the Netherlands

Besides having the knowledge and experience of Dutch debt collection laws, our lawyers can also apply to international debt collection procedures on your behalf. If you and your debtor are both members of the EU, then our lawyers can also initiate the following procedures:

Why hire Bierens rather than a regular debt collection agency in the Netherlands?

  • Specialists in national and international debt collection since 1952
  • Highest collection rate throughout the Netherlands
  • Extensive measures to recover your Dutch debt extrajudicially and judicially
  • No Win No Fee debt collection
  • Immediate action after uploading your claim

“Did you know that the Dutch bankruptcy petition is one of the most cost-effective debt collection measures in the Netherlands?”

Start your debt collection in the Netherlands today

Start your debt collection case in the Netherlands today! While our Dutch Desk get started on your case, you can resume your regular business operations. Upload your case for immediate action or contact our experts today.

contactperson

Free advice from the best debt collection specialists

Yes, I agree with the Privacy statement
  • Fast solutions for your cases
  • Real measures to recover your payments
  • The best results for the lowest costs

Find out how we have helped others with debt collection in the Netherlands

From simple debt collection cases to complex legal matters, from small businesses to multinationals across different industries, our specialists have assisted over 24.000 companies worldwide, including the Netherlands. Find out how our Dutch specialists and lawyers have helped other companies in a similar situation and find the solution for debt collection in the Netherlands.

Frequently asked questions about debt collection in the Netherlands

What are the costs for debt collection in the Netherlands?

We handle all out of court cases on a No Win No Fee basis, also in the Netherlands. You only pay €165,- for administrative costs. Our aim is to recover the principal amount including interest and costs from your debtor. If you decide to take legal action against your debtor, then we move to an hourly or fixed fee. We do not have any hidden costs and will first consult you before proceeding with any action.

How will you contact my Dutch debtor?

We will always contact your debtor by sending an initial demand letter and a phone call. Most importantly, our native lawyers contact your debtor in Dutch. This way we overcome any cultural and language barriers. Our approach is always firm and respectful, and you will always be informed of the status of your case.

How long does an average debt collection procedure in the Netherlands last?

This depends on each situation and debtor. We always start in the amicable debt collection phase. This process takes a relatively short time because we provide your debtor with limited time to complete the payment. When starting your case, your caseworker will provide an estimate on the duration of your case. Should your debtor fail to respond, then our specialists and lawyers can provide you with an expected outcome or course of action within 4 weeks.
If legal proceedings are necessary, the debt collection process takes longer. The duration depends on the legal proceedings and whether the debtor raises a defence. Compared to other European countries, legal proceedings in the Netherlands can be shorter.

When is a debt collection case taken to court?

Our preference is to collect your claim without court intervention. Therefore, we always start a collection in the amicable phase. If this has no effect, then we proceed with court action. However, we always do so in consultation with you first.

What chances do I have for a successful recovery in the Netherlands?

The chance for a successful recovery depends on the nature of your debt collection case. 95% of the cases that we solve are successfully done so on a No Win No Fee basis. Our specialists and lawyers always do their utmost to ensure to collect your claim as fast and efficiently as possible. We always make sure to give you honest and practical advice that will deliver you the best results.

What possibilities do I have for debt collection in the Netherlands?

Our debt collection in the Netherlands always starts within the extrajudicial phase. If legal proceedings are necessary, we can proceed with the bankruptcy petition, civil proceedings, summary proceedings, seizure of assets or international procedures such as the European Small Claims or European Order for Payment.

Can I appoint a bailiff in the Netherlands myself?

Yes, you can hire a bailiff. However, in order to proceed with enforcement via a bailiff, you will need an official court order. To obtain an official court order, you will need a lawyer first.

How long before a debt is written off in the Netherlands?

In the Netherlands, payment claims have a limitation period of 5 years, which applies as soon as the invoice is due and payable. There are some exceptions whereby different limitation periods apply. For example, for cases in the transport sector, 1 year is applicable instead. In some countries, limitation periods can be interrupted by sending a demand letter. Under Dutch law, the limitation period of invoices can also be interrupted by formal recognition of the outstanding amount by the debtor or by initiating legal proceedings.

What is the bankruptcy petition in the Netherlands?

For the bankruptcy petition, it is important to note that there is a difference between applying for the bankruptcy procedure and actually proceedings with the process. For the use of the bankruptcy petition as a means of debt collection, the aim is not to have your Dutch debtor declared bankrupt. If your debtor has several unpaid claims from at least 2 creditors, you can apply for the bankruptcy of your debtor.

What is the cost of the bankruptcy petition?

The costs for applying for the bankruptcy petition depends on the amount of the claim from your debtor. In addition to the cost of this procedure, there will also be additional court fee charges as well as bailiff and legal fees.

How long does the bankruptcy petition take?

On average, the bankruptcy petition in the Netherlands is processed within 4 weeks, however, in some cases, a verdict can be reached within a day. If your debtor pays the invoice in instalments, then the duration may last a maximum of 8 weeks.

Why is the bankruptcy petition so effective?

For debt collection in the Netherlands, it’s considered as one of the most effective methods against unpaying Dutch debtors. The results can be seen within weeks because the stakes are much higher for the debtor. They know they can be declared bankrupt if they do not pay, which is why this procedure applies the most pressure on unpaying Dutch debtors.

Do I need a lawyer to apply for the bankruptcy petition?

Yes, you will need a lawyer. The application must be signed by a lawyer and will also have to be present during the court hearing. Therefore, you cannot file for the bankruptcy of a Dutch debtor yourself. A regular debt collection agency or bailiff cannot do this for you either.