3. How to serve a statutory demand

You must deliver (‘serve’) the statutory demand letter in person so you’re sure the individual or company that owes you the money has received it. You can do this by:

  • giving it to the individual who owes you money (you should try all their known addresses)
  • leaving it at the registered office of the company or partnership that owes money (or the main place of business if they don’t have a registered office)
  • giving it to the company’s director, company secretary, manager or principal officer
  • get a ‘process server’ to serve it for you (a solicitor can arrange this)

You can send it by registered post or put it through a letterbox but only if it can’t be delivered in person.

You should get proof you served the statutory demand, eg a postage receipt or confirmation from your process server. You need this if your demand is ignored.

If your demand is ignored

If the debtor doesn’t settle or agree to your statutory demand within 21 days, you can apply to bankrupt them or wind the company up.

Download and fill in either:

  • form 6.11, if you or someone else served the demand in person
  • form 6.12, if it was served in another way (eg by post)

The person who served the statutory demand must sign the form.

Serve a statutory demand abroad

You should get legal help if you want to serve a statutory demand in another country.

You need to serve a statutory demand according to local laws but also according to the UK rules.

There may also be an agreement between England and Wales and other countries to use the same ‘Civil Procedure Rules’ (parts 6.42 and 6.43).