We believe that specialisation leads to better service. Managed by Waldette Grey, 17 collection secretaries, four filing clerks and our tracers, we have a debt-collection department that specialises solely in collections. Apart from investing a great deal of time in personnel training, we endeavour to improve the speed and efficiency of our service by using the latest technology.
With the help of our own IT manager, we have made considerable investment in developing a modern IT system. We are currently using an advanced computer collections program called Ghost, which not only performs most of the steps in the collections process automatically, but also directs immediate attention to any questions submitted by clients or debtors. Up to 999 new instructions can, for example, be loaded electronically into our database literally with the press of a button. The files are then opened and letters of demand and summonses merged automatically. We also have access to the database of the Deeds Office, enabling us to perform searches on immovable property owned by any debtor. Using the CIPC company search facility in Windeed, we can search for companies, close corporations or organisations registered in South Africa and receive statutory details on directors or members. We also have access to all credit bureau data on any debtor listed.
Because our secretaries receive continuous training and specialise solely in debt collection, we have developed a highly effective team. With a combination of this expertise and experience, allied to our performance-based salary packages, clients are assured of personnel who are totally focused on results. In addition, they have been trained to treat each debtor with the utmost respect. We have a very good relationship with the local sheriffs of court and are very proud of the fast and effective service of our tracers, who often succeed in convincing debtors to sign an acknowledgement of debt, which expedites matters considerably. Their remuneration is also based on the "no success, no fee" principle.
Apart from traditional debt-collection methods used by attorneys to collect debt, namely summonses, sales in execution, emolument attachment orders, garnishee orders and Section 65 financial enquiries, we have worked extremely hard to adapt our system to enable us to use alternative methods of collecting debt, normally associated with debt collectors, in appropriate cases. Apart from using letters of demand, sms’s and phone calls, we also have five collectors working in the field, who visit the work or home address of debtors in an effort to convince the debtor to pay the outstanding balance or alternatively to sign an acknowledgement of debt with a reasonable monthly instalment. These collectors also report to us regarding the prospects of successful execution steps by giving us an idea of what assets the debtor owns that could be attached and sold. We believe that we have succeeded in effectively combining the methods of debt collectors and the methods of attorneys thereby offering our clients the best options available in terms of debt collection.
We furnish monthly collection reports, which we adapt according to the client’s needs. Should clients, however, require any interim reports or have any questions on a specific matter, they are obviously welcome to contact us at any time.
We do most of our debt collection on a contingency basis. The client will therefore never have to pay any accounts and we will not charge any fees for unsuccessful collections. Should we, however, succeed in collecting a debt, an apportionment with regard to the capital and interest will be made. The percentage is negotiable and depends on the profile of the debts. All payments made by the debtor will be divided 50/50 between covering our expenses and fees on the one hand and your claim for the capital and the interest on the other. Half of the debtor’s payments are therefore paid over to the client from the first payment until our costs and expenses are dispensed with, after which all payments will go to the client.