The Zelcer Law Firm provides debt collection services in Israel. Whether it’s a judgment, a consumer debt, or a debt from a business, we have the experience and knowledge to assist you in finding a solution. Should litigation be needed, the Zelcer Law Firm also provides litigation services related to uncollected debts.
Debt collection in Israel can be complicated, particularly when debt is international. This is why having an Israeli debt collection attorney who is familiar with collecting overdue debts is critical. Our clients include law firms, debt collection agencies, and both private and business clients from countries all over the world, and we have successfully recovered unpaid debts from countless debtors since our founding.
Our Approach to International Debt Collection
As with debt collection in most developed countries, in Israel debt collection attorneys attempt to collect from a debtor without resorting to litigation. That said, we are always ready to take your case to trial when necessary. Here’s what you can expect when you hire the Zelcer Law Firm to help you collect unpaid debt.
Asset investigation includes:
- Verifying employment
- Skip tracing investigation to locate debtors
- Locating bank accounts, including safety deposit boxes
- Finding stocks, mutual funds, and bonds
- Identifying real property, vehicles, and other assets
- Determining whether there are judgments, liens, bankruptcies, or UCC filings against the debtor
- Reviewing Corporate Secretary of State records and credit profiles
This knowledge gives us a starting point for negotiating with your debtor—understanding their financial background is key to settling amicably. We will reach out over the telephone or by mailing demand letters, offering the debtor the opportunity to settle. You might be surprised to learn that most debts are settled in this way. Debtors are usually relieved to come to an agreement with their creditors so they can put their debts behind them, which is why we work to understand the obstacles that have prevented debtors from paying what they owe and work together with you to find a solution that is acceptable for all parties involved.
Once an agreement is reached, we will put it in a binding contract and have your debtor sign it. If they violate this agreement, you can move forward with legal proceedings to collect the debt. There are also other pre-litigation options to consider, such as placing a temporary lien on a debtor’s attachable assets, including cash and accounts receivable.
Debt Collection Litigation
While our pre-litigation services are highly effective, there are some cases in which a debtor will not pay what they owe. In such instances, debt collection litigation is necessary. If our initial outreach to your debtor doesn’t produce results, we will go over your options for litigation. While you may wish to move forward with litigation, it’s also important to use the information gathered during our asset investigation to determine whether litigation is worthwhile. We will help you make the decision that’s best for your bottom line.
In Israel, we refer to working on contingency as “no win, no pay.” This type of payment structure can be used for civil matters like litigation to recover unpaid debts, but in some situations, we may agree to work for a flat fee instead of or even a combination of the two payment structures, with a base fee and a contingency fee. You will also be responsible for paying all court-related expenses, such as expert testimony, translations, and court fees, because Israeli law stipulates that they cannot be paid by attorneys. Here’s what you can expect:
- The filing fee for litigation is 1.25 percent of the sued amount at the time of filing and an additional 1.25 percent if testimony must be heard.
- The filing fee for recognition and enforcement of foreign judgments is 633 ILS.
- The winner in a court case typically receives compensation for all court fees and some of their attorney’s fees.
Types of Lawsuits for Debt Collection in Israel
Going to court to collect an unpaid debt is more complicated here than in many other countries because in Israel, we have different “tracks” that lawsuits can be filed in. There are three types of lawsuits that creditors can file in Israeli:
- A regular track lawsuit (“ordinary proceedings”), based on Common Law
- A fast track lawsuit, which is for debts up to 75KILS
- A summary judgment track, which is designed for debts where there is written evidence of the amount owed
During your initial consultation with one of the attorneys at the Zelcer Law Firm, we will go over your case with you and determine which type of lawsuit is best for your circumstances.
Why Hire a Debt Collection Attorney in Israel
Using a debt collection attorney rather than a debt collection agency ensures that the entire process is performed in accordance with Israeli law. The field of debt recovery has little governmental oversight in Israel, which means that if you encounter difficulties with the debt collection agency you hire, you often have no recourse. A debt collection attorney is accountable to the Israeli Law Bar Association, which means they conduct themselves according to high professional standards and ethics. Attorneys are also personally liable to their clients, whereas a collection agency can become insolvent or file for bankruptcy, making it impossible for you to collect.
If, on the other hand, you decide to forego both an Israeli debt collection agency and a debt collection attorney and simply collect the debt on your own or with an agency or law firm in your own country, it’s likely that your attempts will be ignored. Many debtors assume that these foreign debts cannot be collected. Communication from a law firm in Israel makes it clear that you intend to pursue action against them to collect what you are owed.
Furthermore, when you hire a debt collection attorney, you are in a better position to move on to litigation should it be necessary to go to court. A debt collection agency may have a law firm that they work with on cases that require litigation, but it’s important for you to be able to choose your own attorney and work with them directly.
The first step in our approach to collecting debt in Israel is amicable action. Unfortunately, the legal process for collecting foreign debts in Israel is slow and delays can be expected. Knowing this, it benefits both parties to come to an amicable settlement instead of beginning formal proceedings in court.
We assess your debtor’s assets during this stage of debt collection to determine the likelihood of being able to recover the debt they owe. At this time we will also ensure that the debtor isn’t insolvent, as collecting debt from a party that has started insolvency proceedings is difficult under Israeli law.
Other Considerations for Debt Collection in Israel
If you are an individual or business attempting to collect on a judgment made in a foreign court, it’s important to note that Israel has no bilateral treaties with any country other than Germany with regards to the recognition and enforcement of foreign judgments. That said, Israeli courts do typically recognize and enforce foreign judgments when process requirements are met, which means there is no need to reopen a case in Israel. Foreign judgments can be recognized and enforced when:
- There is no possibility of appealing in the foreign court.
- There is reciprocity with the country that issued the judgment (i.e., the other country also allows judgments from Israeli courts to be recognized and enforced).
- The debtor is aware of the judgment and has had the chance to defend themselves.
Any affidavits submitted from foreign countries must be signed at an Israeli consulate office or in front of a notary public and appostilled. If testimony is needed, it can be provided via video; there is no need for creditors or witnesses to travel from abroad to testify in person.
In Israel, interest is added to unpaid debt at about 8 percent annually. The statute of limitations for most civil matters in Israel is seven years, so debts older than this cannot usually be collected.
Why Choose The Zelcer Law Firm
Our team of experienced attorneys has worked to help clients like you recover the money you are owed. We understand the frustration of attempting to collect a debt in Israel when you’re not familiar with the legal system, which is why we start by explaining how debt collection in Israel works. We’ll also keep you up-to-date on any developments in your case so you always feel connected with the work we’re doing.
As the head of the Zelcer Law Firm, Mr. Amihai Zelcer personally oversees all of the firm’s debt collection work and is available to discuss your concerns whenever needed, even if he is not managing your case.
Our goal is to secure what is rightfully due to you by achieving effective legal results. Contact us to schedule a free initial consultation to learn how we can assist you in collecting your debt.
For more information and to schedule an initial consultation, please call 077-2200122.
About The Writer
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“I would like to thank the Zelcer Law Firm for their dedicated care while providing legal solutions and for selecting the most effective course of action for me.
The service I received was reliable, professional and personal.
Special thanks go to Attorney Amihai Zelcer for his assistance.