FAQ

Below you'll find a list of FAQs about hiring a debt collection agency and about online debt collection. Is your question not included in the list? Then feel free to contact us for more information or advice.

  • Costs of debt collection agency
  • Debt collection agency, how does it work?
  • Did you receive a notice?
  • Execution after the verdict
  • General
  • Judicial collection procedure
  • Legal affairs
  • Legal debt collections
  • Online debt collection web portal
  • What happens after verdict has been announced by the judge

Costs of debt collection agency

How much does a debt collection agency charge?

That differs per collection agency. At most debt collection agencies the collection costs are charged to your debtor (No Cure No Pay). There are other costs that you sometimes have to pay, such as subscription and administration costs (that’s not the case with us). If your debtor still doesn’t want to pay following an extensive collection process, you can request that we proceed with a house visit/credit check or, ultimately, initiate a judicial collection procedure. Collection agencies charge in advance for this, but will always try to recover these costs from your debtor after a positive verdict through a bailiff. Read more about how much it costs to call in a debt collection agency

Collection agency Credifin No Cure No Pay

No) Cure No Pay means that your customer (the debtor) pays for the collection process on top of the initial outstanding amount. In the event that we do not manage to collect, you also pay nothing. Not even if, for example, your debtor is declared bankrupt during the collection process. Read more about No cure no pay

Do you ask for subscription or administration costs?

No, you can submit unlimited collection cases and make use of our online web portal free of charge.

When can interest be charged?

The interest will start from the moment the payment date has passed without any type of notice of default being required. The legal consumer interest rate is 3 to 4% and the statutory interest rate for companies is 8.05%. This interest is always included automatically by Credifin in the amount due.

When is a file closed?

Cases are closed on a weekly basis after full payment of the amount has been received by the third-party accountholder, Credifin Nederland. We will first send a confirmation and then immediately transfer the outstanding amount of your original invoice (not including the collection costs, these are the earnings that the debtor has paid to us).

Debt collection agency, how does it work?

How does debt collection agency Credifin work?

With our simple online debt collection system, you have 24/7 access to your debt collection process along with all documentation. After you’ve created an account, you simply upload the overdue invoices (and relevant documents) and we immediately get to work for you.

 

We approach your customers in a friendly manner with the aim of keeping your customer relationship as good as possible. We continue to do so, even if it becomes very difficult. In more than 90% of our cases we collect the outstanding amount in full (including collection costs). Read more about how it works…

How long does the collection process take with a debt collection agency?

That often varies from 1 week to 4-5 months depending on the extent to which your debtor is willing, or is in a position, to pay. If your customer still hasn’t paid after that period, we propose a payment plan or payment agreement. We keep a close watch on your debtor, because an agreement is an agreement. If the agreement is not fulfilled, we follow it up for you.

We manage to collect payment in more than 90% of our cases. If, for whatever reason, it doesn’t work, then you can give us the go-ahead to proceed with a house visit/credit check to collect payment or to assess the financial situation or, worst case scenario, start legal proceedings for you.

When does debt collection agency Credifin transfer the payment?

As soon as we’ve managed to collect the payment from your debtor (I.e. once the money is on our account), we will transfer the payment to you the following Monday.

Final notice

If you want to give your customer one last chance to pay the invoice, then you can have a friendly, polite final reminder sent by us. Always on your behalf, using our company stationery. Because in most cases this leads to prompt payment without jeopardizing your customer relationship. Read more about how we send out a final notice.

Amicable collection procedure?

An amicable collection process is the preliminary stage before initiating a judicial collection procedure to claim the overdue payment from your debtor.

What happens if cash is not collected during the amicable phase?

If your debtor isn’t going to pay, we will assess whether or not it makes sense to start a judicial procedure. After your written approval, we will deal with the case from the moment the summons is issued until the time the verdict is announced.

What does debt collection agency Credifin do to collect a claim?

We collect throughout the Netherlands and Belgium and offer your debtors simple online payment options to make it as easy as possible to transfer payment. Via an online web portal, your debtor also has full access to the outstanding invoices and correspondence. For bulk collections we can automatically load Excel files you’ve provided or make a link with your own accounting system. After collection you will receive the outstanding amount the same week. Read more about the online web portal for debtors.

What's the difference between a debt collection agency and a bailiff?

The main difference between a bailiff and a collection agency is that a bailiff is legally entitled to seize both the income and the estate (such as house, boat, car, etc.).

 

A collection agency acts as an intermediary to give your customer one last chance to pay the invoice before moving towards a judicial collection procedure in which the final verdict is followed up by the bailiff. A debt collection agency is therefore not allowed to move towards a possession order and only requests your debtor, urgently, to transfer the outstanding amount with the aim of keeping the customer relationship as good as possible for you.

What if your debtor still doesn't pay?

If the debtor still doesn’t want to pay, then you can request that we proceed with a house visit or credit check to assess the situation on location, as well as using various resources that we have access to. An extensive report is then drawn up and on that basis you can decide to initiate a judicial collection procedure and have a summons sent to the debtor.

How can I be kept informed of the progress?

Through our online collection portal, you can view the status of your collection process 24/7. All your documentation and communication such as invoices, emails, telephone calls and even WhatsApp messages can be found here.

Do you also handle foreign debt collections?

We only handle debt collection in the Benelux region. We use a specialized agency for other countries (please note: that will result in added collection costs).

Did you receive a notice?

I received a letter from debt collection agency Credifin, what now?

Always check first whether the invoice is correct and whether the invoice has already been paid or not. Have you not paid it yet or have you accidentally forgotten to pay the invoice? Pay the principal sum including the collection costs as quickly as possible so that the costs do not continue to rise. It’s easy to do via our online payment system.

 

If you can’t pay the amount in one go, send a registered letter to us or submit a request via our online web portal and ask for a payment agreement that you’ll definitely be able to fulfill. Incidentally, we are not obliged to make a payment agreement. But most of the time we aim to keep the customer relationship as good as possible.

Don't agree with the outstanding invoice?

It may also be that you disagree with the outstanding invoice, for example because you feel that the work has not been delivered properly or if no valid agreement has been made. Send a registered letter stating that the claim is unjustified or upload this letter via our online web portal. Always keep a copy of the letter and the shipping bill.

What are my rights as a debtor?

Normally you get one or two reminders via the company itself. It’s not mandatory, but it is polite. Before the company can call in a collection agency, the company must have indicated in the reminders that a collection agency will be called in and that all ensuing costs will be charged to the debtor (with consumers after at least 14 days, the so-called 14-days letter).

 

If you still haven’t paid the invoice, the company in question may call on a collection agency and collection costs will be charged, usually 15% of the principal sum.

What is the Credifin online web portal for debtors?

In our online web portal you can view your online debt collection file as a debtor. And you can also make direct payments via this portal. Read more about the online debt collection web portal for debtors. You will find the login details in an email or in a letter that we have sent to you.

How does a debt collection agency access my address information?

A collection agency has various resources through which they can gain access to contact details and debtors’ address information.

Execution after the verdict

Can the bailiff start to seize property straight after the verdict of the court?

No, the bailiff is not allowed to start seizing property straight after the verdict. After the verdict of the court the debtor receives a final opportunity to pay the entire amount due to arrange a payment plan with the bailiff.

Is there always something to recover from the debtor?

The bailiff will start exercising their legal powers to collect the money upon receiving the verdict. This can include seizing income, a bank account, (moveable) property, social benefits or pension. It happens that the debtor has no money or that all collection opportunities are exhausted. This could lead to the collection to fail or take a very long time. Sometimes bailiffs are unable to collect anything, for instance due to bankruptcy or emigration.

When will you receive your money?

Once the bailiff has managed to collect the complete claim, the bailiff will settle this amount with Credifin Nederland. Within one week Credifin Nederland will transfer the amount over to the client.

What happens after the verdict?

The bailiff will need to issue another summons. The debtor will again be given the opportunity to satisfy the claim or arrange a payment plan with the bailiff. Once the debtor does not satisfy the payment, the bailiff will take further legal action. This could include the bailiff starting to seize property.

Who pays the process and execution fees?

These fees will first and foremost be for the account of the debtor. This may include the legal fees (issuing a summons and court fees), as well as execution fees (seizure, second summons). In addition the bailiff charges a general basic fee of € 35,- for administration. This fee cannot be charged to the debtor. In case, after the bailiffs best efforts, the claim cannot be collected from the debtor, all legal and execution fees will be for the account of the client.

General

How can I register as a new client?

Clients can register on the website of Credifin Nederland.

How will I kept up to date about the progress?

Each client will receive a Credifin Nederland username and password which offer access to the online system, where you can check the status of the case(s) 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

I have a claim on someone abroad. Can I contact a collection agency for this?

In case you have a claim on someone abroad, Credifin Nederland can handle the case. This only applies to the Benelux countries.

I want to file a claim, but my debtor is (almost) bankrupt?

Research can be conducted beforehand to determine the opportunity for redress. This happens by a specialised agency. Based on this redress research the client may gain insight into the financial situation of the debtor.

Amicable collection process?

An amicable collection process is a preliminary stage which needs to be observed before any legal proceedings can be initiated. The collection agency and client first try to collect their money in this way.

From what point can one charge interest?

Interest can be charged from the moment the invoice due date expires, a notice of default is not required.

When is a case settled?

The cases are settled weekly, upon completion of payment to the third party account of Credifin Nederland.

What if the debtor still doesn't satisfy the payment?

In case the debtor fails to pay, Credifin Nederland will provide the client with an assessment if initiating legal proceedings will be worthwhile. The costs and benefits are taken into account. Costs to third parties, including the bailiff and court fees, are payable to Credifin Nederland in advance. Upon written agreement of the client Credifin Nederland will handle the case from the moment the summons is issued to the moment the verdict is executed. Once the client decides to initiate a legal proceeding the bailiff of Credifin Nederland issues the summons.

What does Credifin Nederland do?

Credifin Nederland is a company specialised in collecting claims from companies and private individuals by means of both amicable and legal processes.

Fake e-mail uit naam van een incassobureau ontvangen?

Het komt de laatste tijd regelmatig voor dat fake e-mails verzonden worden uit naam van incassobureaus. Het gaat om zogenoemde phishing-mails afkomstig van internetcriminelen. In deze mails wordt gesproken over onbetaalde rekeningen en wordt gevraagd om op een link te klikken om uw openstaande vorderingen te bekijken. Na het klikken op deze link loopt u echter de kans dat uw computer wordt geïnfecteerd met een virus! Wij raden u dan ook dringend aan om niet op dergelijke e-mails te reageren en niet op links in deze mails te klikken. Heeft u wel geklikt op de link? Laat dan uw antivirussoftware direct uw harde schijf controleren op de eventuele aanwezigheid van een virus.

What's a notice of default?

A notice of default is a written notification from the client in which the debtor is given formal notice to complete an agreed performance. A fair term is provided in which this performance should be completed.

Judicial collection procedure

The debtor has received a summons, but has not appeared?

In this case, in the absence of the debtor, the court will normally assign the claim. In most cases this results in a positive verdict for you.

 

Should the customer be present at the hearing?

No, it is up to the debtor to respond to the contents of the summons. Always in writing, if you do not speak Dutch then a verbal explanation is provided.

How long must the bailiff wait to issue a summons?

That’s something else. The bailiff will request a date for the hearing. Once a date for the hearing is assigned, the bailiff will hand over the summons to the debtor, so that he has the opportunity to respond in writing or to appear at the hearing. Your debtor can also request postponement if they are unable to appear or if they decide to call in a solicitor.

How long can legal proceedings take?

The duration of this procedure is difficult to estimate. The procedure can, in absence, sometimes take one month, but in the case of a repeated defense/appeal  this can take 4 to 5 months. The duration of the execution  process depends largely on the cooperation and financial position of your debtor. If they have substantial financial assets, the process can be much faster.

 

If a claim is not immediately collected, the question remains whether it will ever be fully met. We will give you sound legal advice in advance so that you can decide whether it makes sense (financially) to proceed with a judicial collection procedure or not and how long the process might take.

Do you need to be represented by a solicitor at the subdistrict court?

Representation by a solicitor is not mandatory at the subdistrict court. Anything below € 25,000 can be settled without a solicitor and it’s much cheaper through a collection agency and/or bailiff. We also have solicitors who can advise you on whether or not to go ahead with legal proceedings without having to call on the services of a solicitor individually.

Who pays for the costs of this process?

Both extrajudicial and potentially judicial collection processes and other activities are for your own account and risk, such as:

  • Preparing summons
  • Service bailiff
  • Court registry fees
  • Hours made for handling the case
  • Legal redress

 

These costs will be recovered from the debtor to the maximum extent after a positive verdict is announced. We will give you sound legal advice in advance so that you can decide whether it is (financially) viable to move ahead with legal proceedings or not.

Does issuing a summons involve costs?

You pay an advance on the costs for issuing a summons. This advance is used to pay the court fee and the first hearing, so that the legal proceedings can be initiated. Any costs after obtaining the verdict are not included in the advance and will be charged to the debtor to the maximum extent following a positive verdict.

Legal affairs

When can you hire a collection agency?

There are no legal deadlines to determine when you can hire a collection agency. There is, however, a legal limitation period of five years for outstanding invoices. So, it is wise to call a collection agency in time, then you also have the best chance to receive payment for the invoice.

 

Before you can call on a collection agency, you first have to send the customer a notice of default stating that your customer has still not paid despite previous reminders having been sent. You indicate that you expect to receive the payment within x number of days (min. 14 days for consumers), otherwise a collection agency will be called in and the resulting costs will be charged to your customer. Read more about how you can avoid having to hire a debt collection agency.

What can a debt collection agency do or not do?

A collection agency can contact your debtor on your behalf to request payment. This can be done by phone, by registered email, or even by WhatsApp or via social media. This depends entirely on where the debt collection agency suspects that your debtor is most likely to respond. A debt collection agency is not legally entitled to seize the income or the estate, as opposed to a bailiff.

When is a debt collection agency a legally valid entity?

In principle, anyone can start a debt collection agency. No legal provisions have been drawn up for this. It is therefore important that you research the background, track record and proven expertise of a collection agency, unfortunately there are still unreliable collection agencies out there that make a claim for the collection on your behalf and then leave without notice.

Legal debt collections

Does issuing a summons cost anything?

The client needs to pay the costs in advance. This advance payment is used to pay for the court fees and the first summons issue, allowing the legal proceeding to start. Any costs incurred after the verdict are not included in this advance payment.

The debtor has been summoned, but never appeared in court?

In that case the judge will generally approve of the claim in their absence.

Does the client need to appear in court during the first session?

No, it is up to the debtor to react to the content of the summons.

How long can the bailiff wait with issuing a summons?

That depends. The bailiff will request a court date at the court. After receiving a court date the bailiff will issue the summons to the debtor, allowing them to prepare a written statement or appear in court.

How long does a legal proceeding take?

The duration of a legal proceeding is hard to estimate. The process could take one month in absentia, while it could take 4 to 5 months in case of repeated defences.

Do you need a lawyer to represent you in the district court?

At a district court you are not required to be represented by a lawyer.

What happens once there is no collection during the amicable stage?

In case the debtor fails to satisfy the payment, Credifin Nederland assesses if it is worthwhile to initiate legal proceedings. After a written agreement from the client, Credifin Nederland will handle the case from the moment the summons is issued to the moment the verdict is executed.

What is a summons?

A summons is an official, written appeal to appear in court. A summons is issued by a bailiff.

Online debt collection web portal

What is the online debt collection web portal?

Through our online collection web portal, you have 24/7 access to all collection processes that are active through us, as well as the cases that have been closed. All invoices, accompanying documentation and correspondence (email, telephone contact, WhatsApp messages etc.) can always be accessed here. This way you always know the status of the collection process. Read more about online debt collection web portal .

Can my debtors also log in to the web portal?

Since recently we also have the ability to give your debtors access to the relevant (to them) part of your online debt collection file, so that your debtor can (anonymously) gain insight into their own file. And via this portal, your debtor can also make direct payments to make it as easy as possible for your debtor to transfer payment. Read more about online debt collection web portal for debtors.

How can I register as a new customer?

Via the ‘create account’ button you can easily enter your details and receive your login details. Then you can immediately upload your overdue invoices and relevant documentation.

What happens after verdict has been announced by the judge

What happens after the verdict has been announced?

The bailiff will have to repeat the summons. Following the verdict of the court, your debtor will be given the opportunity to pay the full amount or to make a payment agreement with the bailiff one last time. If your debtor does not voluntarily proceed to payment, the bailiff will take further legal action. This may mean that the bailiff proceeds towards a possession order to seize assets.

Can the bailiff proceed with a possession order after the judge's verdict?

No, after the judge’s verdict the bailiff can not claim the same amount by seizing assets. A big misunderstanding is that the payment is handed over as soon as the judge has announced their verdict. A soon as a judge’s verdict has been announced, the only certainty is that your debtor legally owes you a certain amount of money. You’re only halfway there: The verdict is in, the money is yet to be transferred.

 

A bailiff is the only person in the Netherlands that can receive the possession order from the courts to seize assets. Just like a solicitor can draw up a will, you have to call in a bailiff in order to make the claim. A bailiff is not only bound by codes of conduct, but also by laws and regulations.

Is it always possible to recover something from the debtor?

The bailiff will, after obtaining the verdict, use their legal capacity to collect the money. This can be done by means of seizing (a part of) the salary, a bank account, fixed property, a social benefit or pension. It is possible that the debtor has no money or that there are no further solutions. This may mean that the debt collection fails or can take a long time. It’s also possible that the bailiff is unable to collect anything, for example due to bankruptcy or emigration.

I want to make a claim, but my debtor is (almost) bankrupt?

Prior to this, we can conduct an investigation to assess the debtor’s financial status and what the possibilities are for collecting the outstanding amounts. Based on this you can decide whether or not you want to proceed with your claim through legal proceedings.

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