Devon law firm Kitsons has become the latest leading professional services business to join Escalate, the ground-breaking commercial dispute resolution process for SMEs.

Kitsons has offices in Exeter, Torquay and Plymouth.  Kitsons’ addition further strengthens Escalate’s geographic footprint in the South West, where it already has an on-the-ground presence via accountancy practices PKF Francis Clark and Bishop Fleming.

Escalate helps SMEs to achieve a prompt settlement to a wide range of commercial disputes, with fixed fees payable only on a successful outcome and no upfront costs.  The Escalate process has won four prestigious national awards: ‘Innovation of the Year’ at the British Accountancy Awards 2017, ‘Best Collaboration Initiative’ at the Lawyer Awards 2018, ‘Excellence in Business Development’ at the Law Society Excellence Awards 2018, and ‘Legal Services Innovation Award’ at The British Legal Awards 2018.

Escalate is already helping businesses to recover more than £50 million that is currently locked up in commercial disputes.

Chris Clay, Managing Director of Escalate, said: “We’re pleased to be working with Kitsons in order to give all SMEs in the South West even greater access to the Escalate dispute resolution process.

“Resolving a commercial dispute has historically been time consuming, costly and risky for claimants, which is why many of them decide to reluctantly write-off what they’re owed.  Escalate has helped to put that right.  By removing financial risk, providing transparency on process and pricing, and ensuring that the claimant remains the main beneficiary on settlement, Escalate gives our clients an opportunity to resolve their disputes in a way that helps rather than hinders their cash flow. 

“We want to help the SME community so that the £40 billion that’s written off each year as bad debt is reduced.  In our view, a bad debt is just a commercial dispute that didn’t get resolved.”

Andrew Pay, Partner and Head of Insolvency at Kitsons, said: “We’re looking forward to working with Escalate partners PKF Francis Clark and Bishop Fleming to help SMEs in the South West with the inevitable bumps in the road that all successful businesses encounter. 

“Escalate provides SMEs with an innovative means of securing the resources they need to survive and grow, and I have no doubt that our clients will benefit considerably from having access to it.”

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