When do you Need a Pre-sue Report?

A pre-sue report, also often known as a status report, can be a valuable tool in recovering debt from an individual or business. Knowing as much as possible about your debtor’s financial situation can be invaluable as you progress through the debt recovery process. These reports can also help you to make decisions about whether or not it will serve you to take legal action against the debtor.  

A Pre-Sue Report in Detail 

Status reports should include any relevant information about your debtor which can help you establish if they are in a position to pay you, whether they are likely to file for bankruptcy, and whether they generally adhere to their financial obligations.  

It can also include some personal or business details of the debtor to help identify them to you or your investigator, in accordance with the Data Protection Act 2018 and the Human Rights Act 1998.  

Read a full account of what should be included in a status report for debt recovery here. 

close up of writing a report

Pre-sue reports commonly include: 

  • The debtor’s name and date of birth 
  • Contact details for the debtor 
  • The trading address of any companies they own 
  • Their current and previous addresses 
  • Their current employment status and company connections 
  • Their credit history, bankruptcy status, and any insolvency 
  • The estimated worth of their properties and confirmation of ownership 
  • Any CCJs 
  • Marital status and dependents 
  • The debtor’s apparent lifestyle 
  • Any extra information of interest, such as spending habits 

This comes together to make a detailed profile of the debtor. 

At What Point do I Need a Pre-sue Report? 

As the name suggests, pre-sue reports should take place when you are aware of an outstanding debt but have not yet begun to take legal action. There are many different routes to retrieving a debt owed, and one of the purposes of a status report is to find out which is the most suitable for your matter.  

This means you can avoid routes which may be expensive and ultimately fruitless down the line if, for example, your debtor files for bankruptcy.  

If your debtor has absconded, a status report is sometimes suggested or included alongside debtor tracing services.  

How do I get a Pre-Sue report? 

There are certain details in a debtor’s profile which you may be able to find out yourself. However, we recommend using a specialist agent to carry out a status report.  

These investigators have more facilities to check if the information presented in your debtor’s public profiles is accurate and will have access to databases with additional information which may be important. 

Trustworthy investigators such as Able Investigations will also be highly experienced in putting together relevant, tailored debtor profiles, meaning the recovery process can move forward more quickly, without wasting time on information irrelevant to your case.  

They do this through gaining a full understanding of the precise purpose of the report in your situation, gathering the information using legitimate and trusted sources, and compiling a report with both a concise, readable summary and more detailed sections for extra information. 

reading a report

What do I do with a pre-sue report?

Reading the status report provided by your chosen agent should give you a good idea about how your debtor is likely to respond to legal action.  

In some cases, pre-action negotiation, such as mediation, may be appropriate. This may be appropriate if the debtor is likely to claim bankruptcy should you bring your case to court. Between you, you may be able to work out a longer term or lower rate repayment strategy as an alternative.  

If you’re considering this, ensure you’re aware of the limitation of the debt. This means the time limit on how long you can wait to pursue legal action on an unsecured debt – usually 6 years from the last acknowledgement.  

Alternatively, the report may suggest that the debtor is in good stead to pay the debt, in which case you can choose to begin legal proceedings. Any record of the debtor’s previous reactions to country court judgements may help guide you as to some situations to plan for.  

If you successfully receive a county court judgement but the debtor still neglects to repay you, you may need to look into enforcement options. These can include instructing bailiffs or enforcement agents to recover the debt or seize goods of its equivalent value. You could alternatively take the route of obtaining a Charging Order or a Third-Party Debt Order. 

Status reports can be highly valuable if enforcement is needed, as they include all the relevant addresses and contact details to give your agents a head start in tracing the debtor.  

Call on Able Investigations for Reliable and Efficient Pre-Sue Reports, Debtor Tracing, and Enforcement 

We’ve helped hundreds of clients across the UK retrieve their money from a debtor through our professional services. We pride ourselves on our highly qualified staff, communication with clients, and efficient service. 

Call us Today to find out how we can help you. 


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