Find out how to enforce a payment in NT. For an overview on enforcing payments click here.
STEP 1: Informal Communication
What is this?
The more formal Steps 2 and 3 (Letter and potential Court action) could be intimidating to the other party, so you should try to salvage the existing relationship. As such, you should attempt to re-establish informal contact with them by perhaps phone or email. We recommend this because at times, the unpaid invoice could be a result of a simple oversight or misunderstanding, and a phone call here could be a solution. If you are unsuccessful with this step, proceed with Step 2.
STEP 2: Send a Statement of Claim
To begin this process, you must complete a ‘Statement of Claim’, obtainable from NT Local Court or their website.
a) You must then take this form to the nearest Local Court as well as personally delivering this form with a ‘Notice’ to the other party, not mailing. This is similar to a Letter of Demand, a more formal version but is also a prerequisite before the matter will be heard in Court.
b) You will have 12 months after the filing date to action this claim otherwise you will need an extension from the Court.
c) Following the service of the Statement of Claim as well as the Notice you will have 28 days to file a Declaration of Service in the same Court office as the claim.
d) The above steps serve as a type of formal negotiation or else a formal notice to attend Court. If no agreement is reached
and the hearing date is reached, then you should proceed to court and obtain a favourable judgment.
STEP 3: Small Claims debt recovery action
What is it?
Basically, this is a relatively informal local court action, which you can do yourself. It is applicable to money, goods purchased/delivered, labour or a combination of these. Within the Northern Territory, the Local Court can deal with claims up to $10 000.
All claims in NT must be made within 3 years from when the debt arose.
How to do it:
This process has two sub-steps.
- At any point before the hearing, you can settle
with the other party, this is more ideal
- At the hearing, you can choose to represent
yourself or by another, (you’ll be paying their fees). You will put your case
forward and provide relevant evidence (e.g. contracts, receipts, photographs,
etc.). Then, the other party (defendant) will do so also, followed by a binding
Still unsure of how to recover your money in NT? Contact a LawPath consultant on 1800LAWPATH to learn more.