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Debt Recovery -
Writ of Execution Against Real Property

debt recovery, legal advice

In an action for debt recovery once you have a court judgement, you have to decide on the best method of collecting your money. Sometimes, it is as simple as putting the right pressure on a Debtor, to get them to pay up. 

Deciding on the right course of action can be difficult. The wrong step could leave you getting nothing.

However, if a Debtor owns land or their own home, the threat of losing that property, may be enough to convince the Debtor to pay the debt.

Provided the debt to you is over $10,000.00, there is a Court procedure which permits you to start legal proceedings to sell up the land or property owned by a Debtor. 

It is a course of action that must be properly considered, and it does require specialist skills and knowledge. It can be expensive and must be done properly to be effective. it is known as a Writ of Execution against Real Property.

Below is a consideration of how the writ of execution against real property operates and the procedure involved.


Real property means, any land or house.

If the debt to you is in excess of $10,000.00, and the writ of execution on goods to collect the debt is unsuccessful, and the Debtor owns land or a house, you are then entitled to file an application to the Land and Property Information office (LPI) to file a writ on the title, to all real property, owned by the debtor.

However,you must try and seize goods first. The Sheriff has to provide a certificate verifying that a seizure against goods was unsuccessful, before you are allowed to register a writ on the title to the land owned by the Debtor. 

Once you have the writ registered on the title of land owned by the Debtor, you are then entitled to start action to sell the real property. Sometimes, the notice to the Debtor of the writ on the title, forces the Debtor to try and settle the debt with you.

Usually, this step is taken as part of the process in debt collection to sell the Debtor's real property. It should not be started lightly. The writ, once it is registered on the title is active for six months, and if the Debtor tries to sell the property, the writ will effectively stop the sale unless you receive your money.

It is a complex area of law, and if you are taking this step, you should have a solicitor or lawyer doing it for you.

The advantage of this process is that it can work as a means of putting pressure on the debtor to pay the money that is owing. It can also result in the property being sold, and you receiving your money if there is any left over.

The disadvantages of this debt recovery process, is that the writ is only good for 6 months, and if you are trying to sell the property through the Sheriff, and it is not sold within the 6 months, you have to make application to extend the writ. This all costs money to do.

Further, to a certain extent you are going in blind. You do not know what equity the debtor has in the property, especially if there is a mortgage on it.

Also, it is a complicated process of debt recovery., The sale is controlled by the Sheriff, and is not in your control. Certain documents have to be provided to the Sheriff, who then is supposed to do all the things necessary to sell the property. 

Another government department will then be involved in the debt recovery, preparing necessary documents. The process can take a long time, usually in excess of the 6 months, which is the life of the writ.

If there is a mortgage on the title of the property, the mortgagee can sell the property, and if there is no excess funds left after they have taken what they are owed, you will get nothing. it will just become a bad debt that you cannot recover on. Yet, you will have spent a lot of money to get to that stage.

This form of debt recovery should not be started without proper inquiries, consideration and legal advice. It is not for the faint hearted! Click to read about how you go about trying to seize goods in the debt recovery process.

Debt Collection and Debt Recovery can be quite involved and complicated. You really should let the professional debt collection agent or solicitor advise you as to the best course of action, and look after it for you. It will cost you money, but in most cases, provided the debtor has assets, you should recover the additional costs you spend.


debt recovery, legal advice, debt collection

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