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Can bailiffs take a car not registered to me? 2022


For free and impartial money advice and guidance, visit MoneyHelper, to help you make the most of your money.

Can bailiffs take a car not registered to me? The answer is yes. Bailiffs can take your car if it isn’t registered to you. This is because the registered keeper of the vehicle isn’t the owner. Bailiffs will take your car even if you’re not the vehicle registered keeper.

If you’re worried about bailiffs coming to your property, it’s important to know what rights you have surrounding your vehicle. In this article, I’ll be sharing details on when bailiffs can and can’t take vehicles. How you can protect your car and what to do if bailiffs take a car that they shouldn’t.

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Can Bailiffs Take a Car That’s Not in My Name?

Yes, bailiffs can take a car that isn’t in your name. The DVLA don’t keep a record of the owner of the vehicle. The only information is the person who is responsible for its use. Bailiffs can only take things belonging to the debtor.

Can Bailiffs Take a Car That Doesn’t Belong to Me?

Bailiffs can only take items, including cars and other vehicles, which belong to the debtor. They cannot take a car that doesn’t belong to you. However, you will have to prove that the car belongs to someone else. If you’re expecting a bailiff visit, I recommend you gather the paperwork for the vehicle or vehicles in question. Show evidence of the owner to prevent bailiffs from taking your car.

Remember, if the vehicle is on the property or public road, bailiffs will try to take it. The vehicle could belong to your parent, partner, child, or flatmate/lodger. When expecting the bailiffs have the paperwork to have ready to prove that the vehicle isn’t yours.

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Can Bailiffs Take My Car from Private Property?

Bailiffs can take your car parked on your property or a public road. They cannot take it if it’s parked on private property. The only exception to this is if the bailiffs have a court order permitting them.

Can Bailiffs Take My Car if it’s on HP?

Bailiffs shouldn’t take a car if it’s on HP, but the law isn’t entirely clear. The hire purchase company owns the vehicle until you have paid it off. They are the third-party owners, even though you drive it and have use of it. Therefore, bailiffs shouldn’t take or clamp your HP car. However, some bailiffs will try to do so, and may even be successful.

How Can I Prove My Car is on HP?

Have your HP documents ready to prove that it’s a hire purchase vehicle. Show your HP agreement along with proof of payments to the HP company. Additionally, use the HPI Check online and enter your registration.

What To Do If Bailiffs Take My Hire Purchase Car?

Here’s what to do if the bailiffs clamp or take your HP car or make threats that they intend to.

  1. Make a formal complaint in writing to the bailiff company. Make a copy of the letter and keep proof of posting.
  2. Send a copy of the formal complaint to the creditor who hired the bailiffs.
  3. Complain to the Financial Ombudsman or your local Government Ombudsman.

How to Stop Bailiffs Taking Your Car

Bailiffs can take your car even if it’s parked on a public road away from your property. They will look on the road to see if they can find it. They may even search roads close to your home. If they find your car, they will clamp it or remove it. After the car is clamped, you have a minimum 2-hour window to clear the debt before it’s removed. You can also come up with an arrangement to clear the debt to get the clamp removed from the car.

Bailiffs use a number plate recognition camera to track down cars. They can use this at any time and in any location, including while driving. Therefore, I don’t advise that you simply try to park the car on one of your local streets.

Stop bailiffs taking your car by:

  • Parking the car in a locked garage
  • Ask a friend or family member if you can park your car on their property

Remember, it’s illegal to tamper with a clamp on your car. You must use the contact information you’re provided with to arrange its removal. Bailiffs will usually remove the clamp after you arrange repayment of the debt you owe.

Can Bailiffs Take a Disabled Persons’ Car?

Bailiffs can’t take a disabled person’s car. They cannot take a vehicle that is displaying a valid Blue Badge. Additionally, bailiffs cannot take Motability vehicles.

Can Bailiffs Take Your Car if You Need it for Work?

Bailiffs can’t take your car if you need it for work, but it must not be valued at more than £1,350. If your car is worth over £1,350 the bailiffs can take it. The vehicle must be essential for your job and not used merely as transport to work. For example, your car is essential for work if you are a taxi driver or delivery driver.

Can I Hide My Car from Bailiffs?

You can hide your car from bailiffs providing the bailiffs haven’t added it to an inventory of goods on a previous visit. If a bailiff has made an inventory of goods, you will be breaking the law by hiding, selling, or removing anything contained on the list, including your car.

What to Do When Your Receive Notice of a Bailiff Visit

You’ll have notice of a pending visit before bailiffs can turn up. You’ll have 7 days’ notice to prepare for the visit. You can still avoid bailiffs from coming to your home after receiving the notice. Contact a debt advisor listed below if you are struggling with debt and for guidance on how to deal with bailiffs. You don’t have to deal with bailiffs alone, debt advisors are there to help you. Contact one of the following for free assistance:

I have several useful articles providing details on what you can and can’t do when expecting bailiffs. You can also refer to my articles to learn more your rights and learn about what they can’t take from your home.

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Are you struggling with debt?
Are you struggling with debt?
  • Affordable repayments
  • Reduce pressure from people you owe money to
  • Stop interest and charges from soaring