Bailiffs (also known as Enforcement Officers)
If you owe money, one of the ways your creditors might try to get their money back is by using bailiffs. Bailiffs are used to take your goods away and sell them to raise money to pay your creditors.
A creditor (the person or company to whom money is owing) must send you a warning letter before sending bailiffs. Contact your creditor to see if you can make an arrangement to pay your debt in instalments. If you ignore the letter, the bailiffs may be given permission to come to your home. If you receive a Notice of Enforcement, it means a bailiff is definitely coming but this gives you at least seven days’ notice. If you can pay the money you owe, contact your creditor, pay the debt then the bailiff won’t come. Fees will be added to your debt if you ignore the notice and the bailiff calls.
You don’t have to let the bailiff in – no matter what they tell you.
If you want to keep a bailiff out:
The bailiff can’t:
If you let a bailiff into your home, they may take some of your belongings to sell. Bailiffs can take:
Bailiffs can’t take:
Yes. If you can successfully agree a payment plan with the bailiff, it will mean you don’t need to lose your belongings and will pay less in fees. Offer only what you can afford to pay in weekly or monthly payments. If you give the bailiff any money, get a receipt for the payment.
If the bailiff agrees to your offer, you’ll probably have to sign a controlled goods agreement. This is a list of the items they’ll take away and sell if you don’t keep up with the agreed payments. You mustn’t sell or give away any of the items on the list while you’re making the payments.
It can be difficult to get hold of the bailiffs and even if you do, they may not be interested in making a payment arrangement with you. If you’re having problems negotiating with a bailiff, contact your creditor. They may agree to call the bailiffs off if you come to a payment arrangement directly, although you’ll still be responsible for paying the bailiffs’ fees for the action they’ve taken so far.
If you need support or advice regarding bailiffs, do not hesitate to contact us on:
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