Learn how to handle a visit from the agents at Court Enforcement Services CCJ and what they can and cannot do when entering your property.
Dealing with these people can be daunting, but you can try to escape your debt the right way – and before Court Enforcement Services come calling.
Learn all the details about Court Enforcement Services Ltd and managing debt letters in this guide.
Who Are Court Enforcement Services CCJ?
Court Enforcement Services is a team of solicitors and enforcement officers in the debt collection industry. They offer to enforce court orders on unpaid debts, which means they travel to the homes of people with unpaid debts and try to recover the money.
The first method they will use is to simply ask for the money to be paid. However, most enforcement officers are not expecting to receive the full payment and are willing to negotiate a payment plan while at your property.
UK Personal Debt 2021 Update:
2,610 Consumer County Court Judgements (CCJs) were issued every day in England and Wales in January to March 2021, a 13% fall on the same period in 2020. The average value was £1,681.
(Source: The Money Charity)
Find out more about how to deal with these law enforcement officers in this MoneyNerd post.
Contact Details for Court Enforcement Services CCJ
If you are in debt and have had contact with Court Enforcement Services Ltd, you may need to speak with them. Debtors are encouraged to either:
- Call the office using 0343 504 1607
- Or email [email protected]
Debtors can make payments using the online portal at the Court Enforcement Services CCJ website. There are separate portals and contact details for their clients.
Are Court Enforcement Services Loughton a Scam?
No, Court Enforcement Services CCJ is not a scam. They are a registered company and are regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA). This means they must act appropriately when dealing with your debt or you could make an official complaint to the FCA.
Which Companies Use Court Enforcement Services Ltd?
Court Enforcement Services are used by lots of companies in a wide range of industries. They enforce CCJs and High Court Orders to collect debt that has already gone through the courts. They may work for a number of companies, but their website service list includes:
- Sole traders and freelancers
- Commercial landlords
- Residential landlords
- Utility providers
The Court Enforcement Services reviews suggest they are good at what they do:
“Thank you for your update and for news of the positive result. Please could you pass on my compliments to the enforcement officer who seems to have demonstrated great skills and initiative in the circumstances. Well done to them, and thank you!”
[Court Enforcement Services Ltd Website]
Are Court Enforcement Services CCJ a Debt Collection Agency?
Court Enforcement Services Ltd is not the same as a debt collection agency. To understand the differences, it is first important to understand what a debt collection agency does.
What Does a Debt Collection Agency Do?
When a company is owed money and their customer is not paying, they outsource the task of tracking down the customer and requesting payment to a debt collection agency.
This agency must find the customer and send them requests to pay. Often these requests will threaten legal action if an agreement cannot be reached.
If you have received one of these letters, do not bin the debt letter! There are techniques to manage these situations and you might not have to pay. Keep reading our guide to learn more.
The debt collection agency does not have any more legal powers than the company they are collecting the debt for. They are simply used as a way to save business time and resources.
What Court Enforcement Services Ltd Do?
If the debt goes unpaid or ignored, the client may take the debtor to court and get a County Court Judgement on the debt. This means the courts have decided that the debt must be paid. It could be paid financially or via repossessing items, including electronics, vehicles or even homes.
Court Enforcement Services is not a debt collection agency because they only get involved at this stage. They are a team of court enforcement officers who are legally allowed to come to your home to request payment, agree on a payment plan or remove possessions (as long as the CCJ has been issued, which they should provide to you).
Your possessions could be removed and sold to pay off some of the debt, unless you can find the money to pay the debt in the following days after items were removed.
In fact, Court Enforcement Services often help debt collection agencies too. Whereas the client may outsource debt recovery to a debt collection agency. The agency may outsource the next step to Court Enforcement Services CCJ.
What Can Court Enforcement Services CCJ Do?
If you have ever had a debt collection agency worker come to your door, you should know that they have no legal right to enter your property and must not suggest they can remove goods. They cannot!
However, enforcement agents do have these powers once a CCJ has been issued. After all, they are legally enforcing a court order.
They will usually try to discuss the debt with you and show you proof of the CCJ and ask for payment. If you open your door, they are trained to gain entry into your property without any force. But they can use force to enter the property if they need to.
Once inside your home, they mentally take note of your possessions and even vehicles sitting on the driveway to see what value your items could knock off the debt at a later auction.
But if you pay the debt, this will not happen.
What Court Enforcement Services Cannot Do
Just because an enforcement agent from Court Enforcement Services CCJ has entered your property, doesn’t mean they can take all your possessions. Some items they are not allowed to take away.
For example, they cannot:
- Repossess items and vehicles in other people’s names
- Repossess items that you need for work, such as tools, work laptops, work vehicles and similar equipment
- They cannot take items that are not yours, such as furniture included in your lease agreement
- Perishable items, e.g. foods that will go off
How to Deal with Court Enforcement Services CCJ
If the enforcement agents from Court Enforcement Services come to your door with a CCJ notice, you do not have too many options. They can use force to gain entry but do not wish to do this, and neither should you.
It is recommended to discuss a payment plan with them.
Agree a Payment Plan with Court Enforcement Services Ltd
You may be able to avoid paying the full amount to Court Enforcement Services agents by negotiating a payment plan. It can be daunting to have Court Enforcement Services agents at your door, but only commit to a payment plan that you can stick to. Agreeing to payments that you cannot keep may only make the situation worse.
You should also know that Court Enforcement Services will expect the first payment at that moment before agreeing to leave your property without items. They usually carry a terminal to accept card payments, and bank transfers may be accepted.
Don’t Let It Get to This Stage…
Court Enforcement Services CCJ only get involved in the last stages of recovering debt. Fortunately for most debtors, they never experience Court Enforcement Services and their agents because they fix their debts with the company or the debt collection agency first.
To understand how to prevent Court Enforcement Services from knocking on your door, you first need to know the usual process of collecting debt.
Step ONE: Letter Before Action (LBA)
The company you owe the debt to or the debt collection agency that they have employed to chase your debt will get in touch. This means receiving a debt letter with a requested amount of money by a certain date. If they don’t get the money, they notify you that they will take legal action to enforce the debt.
Receiving these letters can be scary, but there is a way to manage them legally and not pay straight away.
Step TWO(A): Getting Proof of the Debt
Most LBAs do not include any proof that you owe the debt. This is the reason why so many people receive an LBA by mistake.
But just because you think there is a mistake, does not mean you can ignore the LBA.
Everyone should reply to the LBA with a request to prove the debt. Proof is a signed agreement between yourself and the company in question. You can download free prove the debt letter templates online to edit and use for your situation.
If they reply without proof, it is seen as harassment and you could report the company or the debt collection agency to the FCA.
You don’t have to pay most debts without this proof!
Step TWO(B): Statute Barred Debts
There is one situation when you can forget about asking for proof, whether they proved the debt in the LBA or not. This is when your debt cannot be enforced by the courts because it is a statute barred debt.
Statute barred debt is when the debt is/has:
- A minimum of six years old
- Not been paid in the last six years
- Without an active CCJ issued
- Not been acknowledged to the company or any collection agency in the last six years.
If your debt ticks all of these boxes, it is statute barred and you do not have to pay.
Statute barred debts are not enforceable in the courts because of legislation that was introduced to stop the courts becoming overly busy with old debt cases. They were under so much pressure that they had to make some old debts unenforceable.
Note: Statute barred debts are not wiped debts. The debt still exists but the company or agency cannot use legal action to retrieve it. This means you will never receive a visit from the Court Enforcement Services agents to recover the debt.
Step Three: Debt Solutions
If the debt collection agency provides proof of the debt and want payment or threaten to go to the courts. It is best to find a debt solution. These are possible even if you are a low earner or unemployed.
1. Agreeing on Payment Plans
You can always agree to a payment plan with the debt agency or the company. This means you get to pay off the debt in monthly installments instead of putting yourself in financial hardship. It is better to do this now rather than with Court Enforcement Services, especially when their enforcement agents will want a bigger payment upfront.
IVAs can be an effective debt solution when the individual is in multiple debts. An IVA is an agreement made by a specialist company that ensures the debtor pays a monthly amount usually for five years.
Once the period is up, all debts are wiped away.
The monthly payments in an IVA are usually much higher than a payment plan, but it does mean debts are wiped and the debtor can save a lot of money over time.
3. Other Debt Solutions
There are plenty of other debt solution options available. Each one is explained clearly without technical jargon on Money Nerd. Read the Money Nerd guide on debt solutions and find the perfect method for your personal circumstances.
And these options are how you avoid CCJs, High Court Writ of Possessions and agents from Court Enforcement Services knocking at your door!
How to Complain About Court Enforcement Services Loughton
If you believe Court Enforcement Services CCJ has been breaking regulations, you can choose to report them to the FCA.
Be aware, that reporting Court Enforcement Services will not remove any CCJ or High Court order they have been given to recover your debts.
Support When Dealing with Debt and Court Enforcement Services CCJ
If you need help understanding debt solutions or dealing with Court Enforcement Services, there are multiple debt charities in operation throughout the UK.
- Step Change UK
- Christians Against Poverty
- National Debtline
These groups have been hailed as excellent places for support and guidance managing debt. Just because it is your personal debt, does not mean you have to through it alone!