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Debt Collection Bulgaria:
don't let your debtor get away

Do you have business clients in Bulgaria who haven’t paid their invoices? Or do you have any other outstanding claims in Bulgaria? Unpaid invoices abroad can cause a lot of problems for your organization, especially if you’re unfamiliar with the language, legal system, or, as in Bulgaria, the Cyrillic script. That’s why Collection Company provides effective debt collection services around the world, including Bulgaria.

Our international debt collection specialists, supported by our network of local lawyers and bailiffs, will help you collect your outstanding claims in Bulgaria.

Submit your invoice before 4:00 p.m. and we'll start today!

Specialized in debt collection in Bulgaria

In every country a different business culture applies. That’s not different in Bulgaria. If a conflict arises or if your client simply doesn’t pay their invoice, this can be the source for a lot of trouble.

All of a sudden you will have to deal with different laws and regulations than you are used to. On top of that you’ll face the language barrier. Government websites in Bulgaria are often not translated into English. So how do you find reliable information on what you can do about collecting debts?

Fortunately, Collection Company is an international debt collection agency with an extensive network of Bulgarian debt recovery experts, lawyers, and bailiffs. Our debt collection specialists know exactly how the debt collection process works in Bulgaria and how to recover debts as quickly and efficiently as possible.

In addition, you have one dedicated English-speaking point of contact who coordinates the entire debt collection procedure.

Want to know more about the chances of us collecting your outstanding debt in Bulgaria? Request a free consultation with one of our debt recovery experts.

Why choose a collection agency for your debt collection in Bulgaria?

Submit your claim

Do you have a customer in Bulgaria who refuses to pay an invoice? Fill in your details and one of our international debt collection specialists will contact you to discuss your case.

    Are you a private person or a company?

    By filling in this form you agree to the privacy conditions.


    How does debt collection in Bulgaria work?

    If you have outstanding claims in Bulgaria, you roughly have two options: an amicable or judicial debt collection. An amicable or extrajudicial debt recovery means that we try to recover your claim out-of-court. This is often the least costly and most efficient way. That’s why we often start with an amicable debt collection.

    If that doesn’t work? Then we can summon your debtor to court. We have an extensive network of lawyers and legal experts in Bulgaria who can represent your interests if it comes to a lawsuit.

    Extrajudicial debt collection

    Have you sent an invoice and a payment reminder to your Bulgarian debtor, but still haven’t received the payment? Then it’s time to start a debt collection procedure. If you submit your claim with Collection Company, we generally attempt to collect your debt in an out-of-court manner first. We will send payment reminders to your debtor, and also try to get in touch with your debtor by phone and email. Throughout this process, we gradually increase the pressure.

    In total, we will contact your debtor sixteen times over a period of three weeks. This is often sufficient to receive payment for the outstanding amount. If this is not successful, we will inform your debtor that we will proceed with legal action and that legal costs will be incurred. In many cases, the debtor will then pay.

    Judicial debt collection

    Does your debtor still refuse to pay? Then there’s no choice but to take legal action. We’ll summon your debtor to court. In Bulgaria, there are two types of legal procedures for debt collection: summary proceedings and standard judicial proceedings.

    Summary Proceedings

    A summary collection procedure (съкратено производство) is only applicable for uncontested claims or for claims under 25,000 BGN based on a notarized contract.

    If your debtor doesn’t indicate to disagree with the claim, but simply doesn’t respond, we can initiate an expedited judicial procedure during the legal phase. This streamlined process is less time-consuming and more cost-effective than the standard legal procedure. There are no hearings, and you’ll need to provide less paperwork and evidence.

    In simple terms: if the court rules in your favor, an enforcement order will be issued immediately. This order will be served to the debtor. The debtor then has one month to object to the order.

    If they don’t, the court will issue a writ of execution. With this writ, a Bulgarian bailiff can immediately seize assets from your non-paying debtor.

    Standard judicial procedure

    If your debtor contests the claim or decides to appeal after the summary proceedings, we can initiate a standard judicial procedure. This process takes longer, involving scheduled hearings where both parties will be heard. As your debtor opposes the claim, it’s crucial to have sufficient evidence supporting your case. Ultimately, similar to the summary proceedings, the judge will render a judgment and, if you prevail, issue a writ of execution. This allows the judgment to be enforced by a bailiff.

    Costs for legal collection in Bulgaria

    For legal proceedings in Bulgaria, fixed statutory rates apply. For summary proceedings, this is 2 percent of the claimed amount. For standard legal proceedings, the legal costs amount to 4 percent of the total claim. If you first file for summary proceedings, and then your debtor still objects, you will pay 2 percent for the expedited procedure and 2 percent for the subsequent standard procedure (the rate for the entire process remains 4 percent).

    It is customary for the losing party to be ordered to pay these court fees and any other incurred costs such as legal assistance and the bailiff’s fees.

    European Payment Order (EPO)

    It is not always necessary to file a lawsuit in Bulgaria itself. In some cases, you can use a European Payment Order (EPO). This is a European procedure for making uncontested, cross-border claims enforceable through a written process. We need to submit several standard forms to the court in your country. 

    The judge can then issue a European Payment Order, which is immediately enforceable without the involvement of the court in the country where the payment order is to be executed, in this case, Bulgaria. After the issuance of the European Payment Order, your debtor has 30 days to contest the claim. If he does not respond within 30 days, the order becomes final. In that case, we can have a bailiff in Bulgaria immediately seize assets from your debtor. It is only possible to obtain a European Payment Order for undisputed claims. Our international debt collection experts can assess whether your case qualifies for a European Payment Order.

    European Small Claims Procedure

    Does your debtor dispute the case? But is it an amount of less than 5000 euros? Then it is also possible to use the European Small Claims Procedure (ESCP). This process is specifically created to make it easier to collect small cross-border claims within the European Union.

    The European Small Claims Procedure proceeds as follows: we submit your claim to a court in your country. That court informs your debtor in Bulgaria. Then both parties have the opportunity to submit evidence. If the judge deems it necessary, a hearing via video conference is held. Ultimately, the judge makes a decision.

    The judge’s verdict is enforceable in all EU member states, except Denmark.

    What does the debt collection process in Bulgaria look like?

    Step 1

    First, we will send a payment reminder to your debtor. This reminder is important because it provides written evidence that you have requested payment. Then, over a period of three weeks, we will contact your debtor multiple times with phone calls, text messages and e-mails.

    Step 2

    If your debtor still does not pay after this, we will send a formal notice. This is the last reminder we will send before initiating legal proceedings. In this notice, we will make it clear that your debtor will be responsible for the legal costs involved.

    Step 3

    If payment is still not received, we will (in consultation with you as the creditor) take actual legal actions to enforce the claim, for example, by instructing a bailiff to seize assets. In Bulgaria, the claimant must have a court order or a European Payment Order for this purpose.

    Interim measures in Bulgaria

    It is often wise to impose an interim attachment on the assets of your defaulter. With an interim attachment, you prevent your debtor from siphoning off money or property before the court has made a ruling. Additionally, it puts pressure on your debtor to pay the debt. Many defaulters settle the debt if interim attachment is imposed, for example, on a bank account.

    In Bulgaria, the court must grant permission to impose interim attachment. For this, we need to submit an application to the court in Bulgaria. The judge will require convincing evidence for the claim. If such evidence is not provided, the judge may require a guarantee that the creditor will bear any potential losses due to the interim attachment (if the claim is deemed unfounded).

    If the judge grants permission for an interim attachment, we must submit the final claim to the court within a month, otherwise the interim attachment will be void.

    Enforcement procedures in Bulgaria

    Based on a court judgment (or a European Payment Order), the judge can issue a writ of execution. With the writ of execution, the decisions and judgments of the court can be enforced. This is done by a bailiff.

    In Bulgaria, there are two types of bailiffs (събирач на дългове): public and private. Both public and private bailiffs have legal powers to collect debts, for example by means of attachment.

    Once the bailiff has received the writ of execution, he initiates an enforcement process. The bailiff first examines the financial situation of your debtor. In order to do so, a bailiff in Bulgaria has access to bank information.

    After the bailiff has collected the necessary information, he will collect your debt. This can be done, for example, by seizing bank accounts, real estate, or other assets. If the bailiff seizes goods, he can sell them by public auction.

    How much do the services of a bailiff cost in Bulgaria?

    For the services carried out by the Bulgarian bailiff to collect the debt, standard rates apply. Each action has a fixed price. In addition, the bailiff charges a fixed rate based on the total amount of the claim.


    Value of claim

    Bailiff Fee

    Up to 100 BGN

    10 BGN

    100 – 1000 BGN

    10 BGN + 10% on the amount over 100 BGN

    1000 – 10.000 BGN

    100 BGN + 8% on the amount over 1000 BGN

    10.000 – 50.000 BGN

    820 BGN + 6% on the amount over 10,000 BGN

    50.000 – 100.000 BGN

    3,220 BGN + 4% on the amount over 50,000 BGN

    Above 100,000 BGN

    5,220 BGN + 2% on the amount over 100,000 BGN

    Generally speaking, the losing party is required to reimburse all costs incurred by the winning party. If the judge awards your claim, these costs are immediately added to the writ of execution.

    Filing for bankruptcy in Bulgaria

    According to Bulgarian law, it is possible to file for bankruptcy if your debtor has completely stopped paying or if the debtor has so much debt that they can only pay a small fraction of their creditors. A bankruptcy application is a very strong pressure tool. After all, your debtor risks losing all their assets. Most debtors choose to pay the outstanding debt when a bankruptcy application is filed. Once the debt is paid, we can withdraw the bankruptcy application.

    In order to request the bankruptcy of your defaulter, we need to submit a written bankruptcy application to the court. If the court declares bankruptcy, it is subsequently published in the commercial register.

    The court immediately appoints a trustee, who takes over the management of the business. Creditors then have one month to report to the trustee. Next, the trustee draws up a list of all debts, which is published in the commercial register.

    Meanwhile, the trustee inventories the company’s assets. Based on the outstanding debts and this inventory, the trustee proposes a reorganization plan or advises declaring bankruptcy. Ultimately, the court decides whether to accept any potential reorganization.

    If the company is declared bankrupt, the creditors are paid out as much as possible from the bankrupt estate.

    When distributing the bankrupt estate among creditors, the following order is followed in Bulgaria:

    • Secured creditors
    • Unsecured creditors
    • The state
    • Employees
    • Other creditors

    Advice about your case?

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      Legal areas of debt collection in Bulgaria

      Whether you have to deal with a business client that refuses to pay or a damage claim in Bulgaria, Collection Company can assist you with collecting your money. Our debt recovery specialists and our local debt collection partners in Bulgaria can help you with claims in various jurisdictions. Consider, for example:

      • Construction law
      • Rental and leasing
      • Buying and selling
      • Labor law
      • Agency agreement
      • Transport
      • Damages and wrongful acts

      Are you representing a law firm or accounting office looking for a partner for debt collection in Bulgaria? We work not only for clients directly, but also for intermediaries.

      How can we help you further?

        • Advice on drafting contracts and terms
        • Credit information on Bulgarian companies
        • Disputes with trustees, for example regarding retention of title and right of lien
        Mediation in reaching private settlements

      File your claim in Bulgaria now

      Submit your claim directly through our direct debit registration form. Prefer to discuss your claim with a specialist first? Leave your details or call us at 070 – 762 0330.

      Free advice on debt collection in Bulgaria?

      Submit your personal information and plan your free consult.

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        FAQ: Frequently Asked Questions about Debt Collection in Bulgaria

        If you transfer your claim to us, we would like to receive as many documents related to the claim as possible. We would like to receive the contract, invoices, a clear bank statement with payments, and credit notes.

        If your file is incomplete, that is no problem. One of our international debt collection specialists will discuss with you what correspondence is available to support your claim.

        We kindly request (as many as possible) the following documents for debt collection in Bulgaria:

        • (Copies of) agreements, email messages, fax confirmations, etc.
        • A summary of what has been agreed upon
        • (Copies of) sent invoices
        • (Copies of) sent reminders
        • Your general terms and conditions (digital or on paper)
        • Proof of delivery

        In Bulgaria, it is not mandatory to be represented by a lawyer. At Collection Company, we do however work together with the best lawyers in Bulgaria. Depending on the complexity and amount of the claim, we assess whether engaging a Bulgarian lawyer is advisable.

        The duration of a debt recovery in Bulgaria depends on the case. An expedited judicial procedure typically takes 2 to 3 months. A standard judicial procedure can take several years, averaging 1 to 3 years. Additionally, the enforcement of a judicial decision also takes time. A bailiff generally gives the debtor two weeks before proceeding with attachment. The sale of seized property can also take several months.

        In Bulgaria, as of 2021, there is a statute of limitations of 10 years for debts of natural persons. Currently, there is no statute of limitations for debts of companies.

        At Collection Company, you will communicate with one dedicated contact who manages the debt collection process. We work with an extensive network of local bailiffs, lawyers, and debt collection specialists. Therefore, you don’t have to search for local experts or maintain contact with these Bulgarian parties yourself.

        Why 40.000 customers tried our services

        Meet our specialized legal team

        Very happy with the help I received. My landlord refused to refund my security deposit for no reason. The collection Company took over all communication, so that I was no longer stressed, and it cost me nothing (no cure no pay). My landlord transferred the money on the last day, so that he did not have to pay any extra collection costs. He didn't take me seriously, they did 🙂 I have been well briefed and informed in advance and in between, and recommend this agency.

        Free legal advice from your personal specialist

        Joost Konings LLM

        International debt collection specialist
        Write email

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