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Enforcement Agents (Bailiffs) - A Rough Guide

The main work of an Enforcement Agent, who used to be known as a Bailiff, comes from private companies or local Authorities to enforce debt recovery. The Enforcement Agent is authorised to Levy Distress by way of a Certificate granted by a County Court Judge. This certificate allows them to Levy Distress for two years anywhere in England and Wales. After the two years the Enforcement Agent must re-apply for another certificate showing he is a “fit and proper person” and that he has sufficient knowledge of the law of distress. He must also provide two references, undergo a criminal record check, a County Court Judgment check and place a security bond of £10,000.

If say a Landlord is owned rent, the procedure for obtaining his money is a relatively simple one. The landlord signs a Warrant of Distress allowing the Certificated Enforcement Agent to attend his premises and Levy Distress. This means the Enforcement Agent takes an inventory of goods at the premises giving the Tenant time to pay his Rent. If the rent is still not paid within a certain time, usually 15 days. The goods listed on the inventory are removed and sold at public auction. The amount raised then pays off the rent owed and any removal fees.

We at Finlays have been Certificated Bailiffs for over 40 years and pride ourselves on being polite and professional. Our main goal is to be courteous to the Tenant who often has difficulties with his company and doesn’t need the added stress of a “heavy”, trying to force him to “pay up”.

Most Enforcement Agents are members of the Certificated Enforcement Agents Association and are subject to the complaints procedure of that body.

Citizens Advice Bureau - Enforcement Agents

If you would like to know more please email us, we are happy to help.

Finlays Bureau of Investigation Ltd.


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