If you’re reading this you’ve probably been contacted by Irwin Mitchell LLP. Being contacted by a debt collection company is never pleasant and you may have lots of questions.
Who are Irwin Mitchell? Why am I being contacted by them? What should I do if I receive another letter from them?
Being in debt can be a very stressful time, but it’s important to remember that you’re not on your own. There is help out there and in this guide, we aim to show you what you can do about your debt situation.
We’ve also got lots of helpful information on who Irwin Mitchell are and how to stop their calls and letters. There’s even a way to potentially write off most of your debt!
If you’d like to know more about this company and what you can do to stop them from harassing you, be sure to read our helpful guide!
Did You Know You Can Write Off Up To 85% Of Your Debts?Do I Qualify?
Table of Content
- 1 Who are Irwin Mitchell LLP?
- 1.1 What do they do?
- 1.2 Why has my debt been sold?
- 1.3 Do I still need to pay if the debt has been sold?
- 1.4 Are they a legitimate debt collection company?
- 1.5 What kind of debts do they chase?
- 1.6 Do they hold any legal powers over me?
- 1.7 Which debt collection techniques are used by Irwin Mitchell?
- 1.8 Will they come after my business?
- 1.9 Can a debt collection law firm make a court claim against me?
- 1.10 Why am I being contacted by a third-party debt collector?
- 1.11 How do I contact them?
- 2 What to do if a debt collection firm contact me
- 3 Paying off debts
- 4 Write off 80% of your debts
- 5 FAQs
- 6 List of Debt Collection Agencies UK
Who are Irwin Mitchell LLP?
Irwin Mitchell, founded in Sheffield in 1912, is a UK based law firm and they offer legal and financial management services. They operate from 15 offices and have more than 2,500 employees.
They were ranked the 21st largest law firm in the UK regarding their revenue. So while they’re not the biggest company in the country, they’re not a small company.
Irwin Mitchell LLP also offers debt recovery services to companies who have failed to collect the debt themselves. They’re part of the Cabot Credit Management Group and they buy debts from their clients. They will then attempt to get the money out of you using more persistent techniques.
What do they do?
Like all debt collectors, Irwin Mitchell has bought your debt from the company you originally lent the money from. This is why you may be confused when they contact you.
Why has my debt been sold?
Most companies just don’t have the resources to go after unpaid debts. For this reason, they’ll sell the debt to a debt collection agency, in this case, Irwin Mitchell. Another reason companies sell their debts is that while they’re good at lending money, they’re not so great at reclaiming it!
Do I still need to pay if the debt has been sold?
Unfortunately, yes. When Irwin Mitchell bought your debt, it meant you now owe them instead of the original creditor or lender.
Sometimes the debt may not have been sold, but the original creditor has given the collection responsibility to Irwin Mitchell. In this case, you still owe them as they’re the ones dealing with it.
Because of this, if you receive contact from them, it’s important to respond as soon as possible. Let them know your situation and whether you can afford the debt or not.
It’s their job to offer you support and if needed, help you come up with a reasonable repayment plan so you can start to clear your debt.
Are they a legitimate debt collection company?
Irwin Mitchell is a Limited Liability Partnership registered in England and Wales. The law firm is also regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Society (SRA).
What kind of debts do they chase?
If you’d like to know which debts Irwin Mitchell chase you can contact them to find out more. They likely collect for many large companies and lenders. For example, credit card companies or banks are common clients of debt collectors.
Do they hold any legal powers over me?
No, they don’t. It’s vital to realise; Irwin Mitchell debt collectors do not have any special legal powers over you.
All registered debt collection companies must abide by the same rules as the original creditor, meaning they don’t have any more power over you. However, if you don’t make any attempt to contact them, they can apply to have a County Court Judgement issued against you, which is an order to pay back the money.
But they’re not bailiffs and while they can send agents to visit you at your house., they can’t enter your home without your permission.
They may try to pressure you into paying, but they must treat you fairly and be willing to work with you to come up with a solution.
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Which debt collection techniques are used by Irwin Mitchell?
Unfortunately, debt collectors are renowned for being unscrupulous and for trying to pressure debtors into making payments. It’s unclear exactly which techniques will be used by Irwin Mitchell, but there are rules they have to stick to.
They must not:
- Contact you at your place of work without your permission
- Contact social media accounts belonging to you
- Contact you at unreasonable hours (outside the hours of 8 am – 9 pm)
- Cause you public embarrassment or reveal your debt situation to others, including family members or your employer/work colleagues
- Give you incorrect or misleading information of any sort
- Treat you unfairly, disrespectfully or harass you
As long as a debt collection agency is authorised and regulated, it can’t ignore these strict UK guidelines. Any inappropriate actions are considered a breach and can be punished under UK laws.
Will they come after my business?
If you’re worried about Irwin Mitchell going after your business, seek the help of a debt advisor. These experts will be able to give you all the information you need in these unpleasant circumstances.
Whatever you do, don’t ignore it as the problem won’t go away and it’ll just make things more stressful for you.
Can a debt collection law firm make a court claim against me?
If you owe money and you don’t pay it back, you may be taken to court. However, this is less likely to happen if you respond and agree to pay back some of the money. Try and reply as soon as possible, even if you don’t agree that you owe the debt.
If you ignore them and don’t confirm the debt is actually yours, you may be taken to court for a debt that you’re not liable for.
Unfortunately, at this point, it will be even harder to challenge the court order against you, it may even cost you money to get out of it.
If you are taken to court you’ll receive a court order. This will tell you how much you need to pay and by when. If you can’t afford the full amount, offer to pay some of it back. Even the offer of £10 is better than nothing at all!
Why am I being contacted by a third-party debt collector?
If you’re being contacted by a third-party company, such as Irwin Mitchell, it’s because the original creditor wasn’t able to collect the debt from you. Debt collection agencies chase payments on behalf of their clients, which is why you may be a bit confused when they first contact you.
As mentioned earlier, the worst thing you can do is ignore a debt collector. They won’t give up and ignoring them will make them contact you more and more. Acknowledging them will be better for you in the long run.
Something else to remember is, the longer you ignore them, the bigger your debt is likely to become. This is because the collection agency will add more interest and other charges on top of your existing debt amount.
How do I contact them?
If you’ve received a phone call or letter from Irwin Mitchell, it’s better to respond straight away. If you’d like to contact them they’re open 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.
Their contact information is:
- Phone number: 0808 291 2635
- You can use their live chat option or get a call back
- You can also fill out their enquiry form
It’s completely understandable to feel nervous or embarrassed when contacting Irwin Mitchell. But remember, they’re not judging you. To them you’re just an account they have to settle and thousands of people go through the same thing every week.
What to do if a debt collection firm contact me
Seek debt collection assistance
If you feel like you’re in way over your head with your debts, seeking the help of a debt advisor could be the answer. Many people think that bankruptcy is the only way out of a debt situation, but it isn’t.
Having professional debt advice could help you avoid the potentially negative results of declaring bankruptcy. If you go bankrupt, it stays on your credit file for 10 years, making it much harder to take out future loans, buy life insurance or even get a new job.
It may be a bit nerve-wracking discussing your financial problems with someone you don’t know. But a debt advisor won’t judge you, and they’re there to help you.
Check if the debts you owe are legitimate
Before you pay anything to a debt collector, it’s essential to make sure the debt is actually yours. If you’re unsure whether it’s yours or not, you can contact a credit agency to see if there are any unpaid debts against you.
It’s every debt collectors responsibility to prove that the debt belongs to the alleged debtor. If they fail to prove it’s yours, then they’re forced to mark it as settled.
You can insist that Irwin Mitchell proves the debt belongs to you by getting them to send you a letter of proof. If not, then you don’t have to pay them a penny.
The law clearly states that proof of debt ownership is required. If they come back to you claiming that they have traced the debt back to you and require it to be paid in full by a certain date, this isn’t good enough.
If they issue a County Court Judgment against you
If you’ve received a County Court Judgment (CCJ), you may be wondering what it means. It’s a court order telling you to pay the debt that you owe. It’s one of the legal actions Irwin Mitchell may take to collect the money from you.
Once you’ve received the CCJ form, you’ve got two weeks to reply. It’s super important to respond within those two weeks because if you don’t, the court may order you to pay at a rate that’s too expensive for you, as well as more legal actions. This will only cause you more stress and anxiety.
County Court Judgments are only issued in England and Wales. If you’re in Northern Ireland or Scotland, the process will be different.
Paying off debts
If you can afford to pay
If you’ve confirmed the debt is yours and Irwin Mitchell have proof of the debt in question then it’s your responsibility to pay it. If you can afford to, the best thing to do is to go ahead and pay.
The faster you pay, the faster the phone calls and constant letters will end, taking a weight off your shoulders. Even if you can only pay in small monthly payments, slowly clearly your debt will be a relief for you.
If you can’t afford to pay
If you can’t afford to pay your debt, don’t panic. Being honest about your situation is always the best thing to do. Don’t ignore the problem hoping it will go away, it won’t.
It’s a good idea to talk to Irwin Mitchell and explain your circumstances. Explain that you’re struggling to afford the repayments but that you’re willing to work out a solution to the problem.
Showing that you’re willing to sort it out means you’re less likely to be hit with a CCJ. However, when you’re working out a repayment plan, make sure it’s one that you can afford.
Don’t agree to something you know you can’t afford as the missed payments will only be another source of stress for you.
Can pay but won’t
If the debt definitely belongs to you, it’s not a good idea to refuse to pay if you can afford to. Simply refusing to pay is the perfect excuse for debt collectors to get court orders issued against you.
It really isn’t worth the stress. Even if you don’t agree with it, if there’s hard proof that the debt is yours, you’ll be required to pay it. If you don’t, you’ll face court action and even risk having the bailiffs sent to your home.
Write off 80% of your debts
Did you know that in certain debt situations, you can write off the majority of them? To do this you’ll need to have an Individual Voluntary Arrangement (IVA), which will put all of your debts into one.
You’ll then make affordable monthly repayments for a set period of time, usually 5-6 years. After that, any remaining debt is completely written off.
There are many advantages to an IVA:
- You only need to pay back the agreed amount of the debt.
- You know exactly when you’ll be free of the debt, giving you peace of mind.
- You’ll stop receiving calls and letters. Once the creditor or collection agency agrees to it, the IVA is legally binding, meaning they have to abide by it and they can’t take any other legal action against you. They also can’t contact you demanding more money than agreed.
- Your home will be safe from resale or repossession. However, you may have to re-mortgage.
- It will be made up of payments you can afford based on your personal income and financial outgoings.
- The interest and extra charges on your debt will be stopped, so you can make payments without worrying about excessive extra costs.
If you’re considering an IVA, seeking the help of a debt advisor is a good idea. They’ll be able to offer you expert advice and will tell you if it’s a good idea depending on your personal debt situation. Usually, an IVA is only given if your debts are more than £6,000.
Is there a difference between debt collectors or bailiffs?
Yes, although both of them can come to your home, there is a difference between the two:
What is a bailiff?
A bailiff has the legal power to collect debts. Some of them are self-employed whereas others work for private companies. They tend to collect debts such as CCJs, parking notices and unpaid council tax.
Bailiffs can legally visit your home and in some cases take your possessions to sell on to pay for the debt. For this reason, it’s wise to keep on top of these kinds of debts.
What is a debt collector?
A debt collector, such as Irwin Mitchell, attempts to collect debts they’ve bought from lenders or creditors. Although they can visit your home, unlike bailiffs, they can’t take any of your possessions or even make threats to.
All they are allowed to do is to ask (not force) you to make payments to clear the debt.
Will I lose my home because of my debts?
This depends on what kind of debt you have. If you’re in arrears with your mortgage, the lender can take legal action against you, which may include repossessing your home.
For other unsecured debts such as credit card arrears, it’s highly unlikely you’ll lose your home. For this to happen, several lengthy steps would have to be taken.
For most creditors, it just wouldn’t be worth the time and money. However, you still should not ignore it.
Will Irwin Mitchell stop chasing me?
Unfortunately no. In fact, ignoring Irwin Mitchell will only make them chase you more. Acknowledging them will lessen the frequency of the phone calls and letters because you’ll be seen to be willing to sort it out.
However, old debt that’s over six years old may not be payable by you anymore. This is a complicated area and it depends on your personal situation. Contacting a debt advisor for help is probably the best thing you can do in this case.
Is Irwin Mitchell SRA regulated 2021?
Irwin Mitchell is regulated by the SRA. All businesses that are SRA regulated must abide by the rules of professional conduct. You can also access the Code of Conduct from the SRA, that all authorised businesses must follow.
Can I complain about Irvin Mitchell?
If you feel Irwin Mitchell has mistreated you, you can complain. Their complaint email address is [email protected]. Make sure you email your phone number so they can easily get in contact with you.
If you’re not satisfied by the response from Irwin Mitchell, you can report the matter to the Legal Ombudsman. You’ll need to submit your complaint within six years from when the incident occurred.
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List of Debt Collection Agencies UK
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