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Flint Bishop LLP specialises in advising large national brands on the management of volume B2B recoveries. The team stands out through its single-solution recovery option, assisting not only with outsourced credit collections, but also offering a legal recovery service, including representation in related disputes. Clients include several high-profile clients such as Office Depot, Yell and Virgin Media Business, Contract Natural Gas and LexisNexis. UK Mail has instructed the team to act as sole debt recovery partner. Chief executive Qamer Ghafoor and Nick Wells are the main contacts.

Shoosmiths LLP ‘is in the top tier for debt recovery’ and ‘combines volume capability with the breadth of technical capability of a full-service law firm’. The team acts for banks and other lenders, debt purchasers and businesses across the UK, and demonstrates strength across a wide range of debt, including asset finance, consumer and corporate secured and unsecured lending, invoice finance and mortgage shortfall, as well as trade debt. Jim Taylor heads the East Midlands practice and is ‘an excellent and practical lawyer’. Also recommended are Melanie Chell, Stuart Montgomery and ‘super-efficient’ associate Louise Kitchen, who ‘regularly delivers great commercial outcomes for her clients’. In an illustration of the practice's FCA authorisation for debt recovery and debt administration, the team was appointed to handle live portfolio management and collections work for consumer motor finance company, Oodle Financial Services. Wendy Rainbow joined IPSEA.

Wilkin Chapman LLP’s core areas of expertise are local authority debt recovery, utility debt recovery, commercial debt recovery and credit union debt recovery, but the team also offers specialist strength in bankruptcy and winding up petitions as well as order for sale applications to enforce charging orders. Key figures include practice head Chris Grocock, Mark Taylor and Matthew Dix. The practice acts for several local authorities, including the London Boroughs of Haringey and Bexley, as well as multiple credit unions, including the Transave Credit Union, which the group advised on the recovery of unsecured loans from member across the UK, with a focus on regulatory and compliance issues regarding loan agreements and the development of recovery strategies. Other clients include Maria Mallaband Care Group, Canal & River Trust and Qpark.

Nelsons Solicitors Limited delivers ‘excellent service’ and focuses on providing B2B debt recovery advice to commercial clients nationwide. Associate Simon Key heads the practice, which recently attracted a number of new clients, partly thanks to its specialism in international debt recovery matters. Clients include businesses based outside the UK, English companies doing business abroad, and residential landlords.

Smith Partnership impresses with ‘exceptional service’. The private education and consumer goods sectors are mainstays for the practice, which advises private nurseries and acts alongside banks for their private education clients. The group also handles mandates in the manufacturing, construction, finance, telecommunications and brewing industries. Claire Twells, who ‘interacts exceptionally well with clients’, heads the department, which includes ‘tenacious’ litigation executive Sharon Davies and litigation executive Andrew Hambleton. The team recently assisted the University of Leeds with the recovery of a debt from Genelux, an Indianapolis company, related to an agreement between the university and Genelux to provide staff training for Genelux in the university’s laboratories.

Actons is noted for its expertise in the retail, real estate, architecture, education and professional services sectors. Victoria Dunstall heads the practice, which includes litigation executive Yvonne Thomas. In a typical example of the team’s expertise in the intersection between debt recovery and insolvency law, the pair recently acted for a litigator in recovering a £35,000 debt due to the company in liquidation. Another stand-out instruction saw both practitioners assist a trustee in bankruptcy with obtaining possession of a bankrupt’s jointly owned property, involving third party claims and securing funds under an insurance policy. Clients include FHP, Killarney Homes and L & S Accountancy Services.

Brady Solicitors has a clear focus on the recovery of service charge and ground rent arrears and acts for an impressive list of clients from the real estate sector such as BNS and Atlantis Estates, as well as new clients Westbury Residential and Savills. Jonathan Watts leads the practice, which includes managing director Clare Brady. Recent highlights include a high-value multi-action case involving mortgage fraud and substantial arrears, and a mediation case for Sterling regarding £130,000 of service charge debts from a commercial tenant.

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