After a long period of consultation and committees, on 21 March 2017, a new Pre-Action Protocol (PAP) for Debt Claims was released. This PAP is coming into force on 1 October 2017.
There are a number of points within the PAP that alter the prescribed pre-action process away from what is currently considered common practice. These points largely relate to the required delay following a pre-action letter and the contents of the same. In the latter case, there is a far stronger emphasis on the creditor and/or their representative to provide the debtor with detailed information pertaining to the debt in the pre-action letter. This could present a number of procedural challenges to you all, particularly those that deal with high volumes of debts.
One minor “positive” to take from the PAP is the fact that it will only affect pre-action conduct where the debtor is an individual (a consumer or a sole trader). Accordingly for those who deal predominantly with business debt, or a mixture of both business and consumer, the impact should not be quite as disruptive.