There are caps on the fees you can be charged by law enforcement officers, also known as bailiffs. If you think you have been overcharged, you should complain about a bailiff overcharging you in writing first. We make this process simpler and less stressful.
Download our complaint about a bailiff template letter for free and add your account details and some other information to make the letter complete. Our letter could earn you a refund!
To Whom It May Concern
Regarding Case #: [your case number]* (required)
I am writing to you about my [put the type of debt here]* (required) with the above account number and the breakdown of the fees that you have sent me.
[include details of the actions that the bailiffs or high court enforcement officers have taken so far and how much they have added to your debt in fees and charges.]* (required)
Under The Taking Control of Goods (Fees) Regulations 2014, the amount you should have charged me was £[set out here how much the charges should be]* (required).
I am making a formal complaint that you have overcharged me by £[amount]* (required).
If you think that my calculation is incorrect, please explain why. Otherwise, please [state here what you want the bailiffs to do to put things right]* (required) by [include a date 14 days from today’s date]* (required).
Unless you can explain why you think that my calculation is incorrect, or you refund/remove the fees that have been incorrectly added, I will take this complaint to the [name of ombudsman or trade association]* (required).
I am sending a copy of this letter to [put the name of the creditor here]* (required).
I look forward to hearing from you.
The download links below take you to a Google document template where you can make a copy or save in any document format you like. Note, you may have to login to your Google account.
What do bailiffs charge?
If a creditor is using a bailiff to recover your debt and enforce a CCJ, the bailiff will charge the creditor for this service. However, the creditor can pass some of these fees onto the debtor and add them to the debt. The fees that you will be subject to are fixed as stated in The Taking Control of Goods (Fees) Regulations 2014.
Just sending you a notice letter will add £75 to your debt. The other fees you will be subject to are dependent on how many times the bailiff needs to visit you and if the debt is worth over £1,500. The first visit will cost £235 and visits to remove goods on a second visit costs £110. You’ll also need to pay 7.5% of the debt value above £1,500. If you have a big debt, the overall costs can be significant.
If a bailiff repossesses your items to be sold at auction, the items may need to be put into storage until the auction takes place. In this case, you will be charged a storage fee which can be hundreds of pounds.
These are the standard fees payable but some bailiffs executing High Court Writs could be permitted to charge even more.
What to do if a bailiff has overcharged you?
If you believe that a bailiff has overcharged you more than they are permitted in the aforementioned regulations, you can complain. This is best done in writing by sending them a letter complaining that the bailiff service has overcharged you. Use our free letter template to do this easily and make reference to the correct legislation.
If they dispute your claim, you might want to get a second opinion from a debt charity. If they agree that you have been overcharged, you could escalate the matter to the Financial Ombudsman and the trade body for the bailiffs.
How long do they have to reply?
Once you have sent the letter, you should give them 14 days to reply. If they do not reply to your letter within this timeframe, you should escalate the issue immediately. They could be ignoring you and hoping you will give up.
What happens if you ignore bailiffs?
Ignoring a bailiff is not a good idea. As you can see by the information above, it could mean you end up having to pay more. Remember that bailiffs can agree to repayment plans, which could now be the cheapest way out for your debts at this point in time.