MEC Security are known for contacting a number of people each day to discuss their debt. Debt problems are common, and there are many people who are in a lot of financial trouble because of their debt. If you have failed to pay back a loan, credit card etc, you may end up being contacted by MEC Security, or another similar company.
It can be quite distressing and upsetting to be contacting by bailiffs like MEC Security, but you should always deal with your debt problems. If you have a greater understanding of how they work, and what your rights are, you will be able to stop the situation from getting worse. This article will look at who MEC Security are, why they might visit your property, and how you can deal with the situation.
Who are MEC Security?
MEC Security are Certificated Enforcement Agents authorised by Chelmsford County and Family Proceedings Court. They are based in Essex and have been trading since December 2012. They are controlled by Ryan Blewitt.
Although MEC Security are authorised Certificated Enforcement Agents which means that they are authorised to collect debts, they concentrate on providing SIA approved security services as well as dealing with traveller and trespasser evictions.
1386 London Road, Leigh On Sea, Essex, England, SS9 2UJ
Also Known As:
Mec security Limited
Mec security Ltd
Mec security Group
Mec security Bailiffs
Mec security Debt Collectors
Mec security Debt Collection
Mec security Agency
Why Are MEC Security Getting in Touch
If MEC Security have called you out the blue and you have no idea who they are, you are probably questioning the legitimacy of the company. You should know that they are legitimate, and if they get in touch, you should speak to them and find out what they want. These are some of the potential reasons they may be contacting you:
- You have debts with individuals, businesses or other organisations
- You have failed to pay your tax bill and or you have received a tax overpayment from HMRC
- You have credit card or payday loan debt
- You have defaulted on your court fines
The original creditor you have the debt with, such as HMRC, will pass the account over to MEC Security. This is because they have exhausted efforts to get in touch with you, or to get any payment from you. They do this as they guarantee they’ll get a bit of money, and they no longer have the hassle of trying to chase the debt. Some of the companies they may be chasing you on behalf of, include:
- Gas and electricity suppliers, such as NPower
- Broadband and mobile companies, including Virgin Media and O2
- Local council debts, such as parking fees
It is more worthwhile for MEC Security to buy the debt in bundles, instead of buying it individually. As they pay a small amount for the debt, and in some cases, even less if they buy in bulk, they can make a good profit from the debt, as long as you pay up!
Is There Any Way to Stop MEC Security From Contacting You?
MEC Security agents may use quite harsh tactics to try and get payments on the debt. They have been known to send letters, and call an excessive amount to try and get the money. They may even show up at your home. The only way to stop the contact is to speak to them. You should never ignore them, as they won’t stop. It’s better to face up to your debt problems.
In some cases, MEC Security or other bailiffs may be used for the purpose of serving court documents, or even giving you summons or notices. If they are visiting your property, they should always give you 7 days’ notice, at a minimum. If you contact them and pay the outstanding debt, this will stop them from trying further.
MEC Security cannot just do what they want, or treat you in any way they wish. These are some things they can’t do:
- They are not permitted to send letters that resemble court forms
- They must not call you at unreasonable times, such as before 6am or after 9m
- They should not contact you in any way you have asked them not to, such as at your place of work
- Use jargon or technical language to try and confuse you
The best way to resolve the situation is to make sure you contact MEC Security and discuss the debt. You will find their contact details on any correspondence they have sent or on their website. If you contact them quickly, you will be less likely to end up with other costs or a visit to your property.
If they are contacting you about debt that doesn’t belong to you, you should ask them to provide evidence of the debt. The Financial Conduct Authority’s guidelines have more information on this (see section 7).
Do MEC Security Have Any Powers?
MEC Security are a bailiff, so they do have legal powers in relation to chasing you about the debt. You also have rights, and it is important that you know what these are.
Bailiffs have the right to visit you at home to try and get the debt payments. They may even have the right to enter your property, and remove belongings in payment for the debt. If you don’t allow them access, and you make no attempts to pay the debt back, they may take your vehicle from outside your property.
If an agent from MEC Security arrives at your property, and you tell them you are not paying the debt, they may decide to take items to the equivalent of the debt. For instance, your TV or games console.
In cases where the debt is serious, such as if you have not paid your criminal fines, income tax etc, they may have the right to force entry, although this would be a last resort. If the debt is just regular debt, such as an unpaid credit card or loan, bailiffs are not permitted to enter your home in these ways:
- By forcing into the property and pushing you out the way
- If there are only vulnerable people at home, or young people under 16
- At unsociable times, such as before 6am or after 9pm
- By any other means than your door
How to Cope With a Visit from MEC Security
You are not required to give access to bailiffs, unless it is extreme circumstances. They may tell you that they have the right to access your property when they do not have permission to do so. The only way they can force entry into your property is if you have failed to pay court fines, tax debts or other serious debts. They must also be able to prove this with paperwork. If you do not allow them access, when they are allowed to enter, they may try to get access through a locksmith. They cannot break your door down, and these actions would be a last resort.
If someone shows up from MEC Security, you should always ask them to provide you with identification. These are some types of identification they should be able to provide, without any hassle:
- ID card, badge or any other identification that shows who they are
- Proof of the company they’re working on behalf of (such as MEC Security)
- A breakdown of the debt and total costs
- Proof of whether they have the right to force entry into your property, such as a warrant or writ
You do not need to allow them to enter your property to provide the identification. You can ask them to put it through your door and you can have a look through the documentation, ensuring it is all accurate and in date.
If they do not have the relevant permission to enter your home, you can request that they leave. You should then contact the head office of MEC Security and arrange the payment this way. If you are being chased about debt that is not in your name, you should request that they leave, and you can update head office yourself.
If you fail to contact MEC Security and inform them of the debt being incorrect, or to make payment to it, they will keep visiting you. They won’t give up in a hurry!
MEC Security Have Taken Your Goods – What Next?
If you read this after you let a MEC Security bailiff into your property, you may be panicking that it is too late to recover your goods. There are ways, as long as you don’t leave it too long to take action.
The simplest way to get your goods back is to pay the debt before the items are sold. The other option is to set up a suitable repayment structure that suits your budget. You may even want to buy your items back, to clear your debt.
If MEC Security have failed to adhere to the legal requirements, this is another way you might be able to get the goods back. You will be able to contact Citizens Advice to get more information on this.
What Actions Can You Take If You’ve Been Contacted by MEC Security
There are various considerations you should make before deciding what action to take. These are some things you should and shouldn’t do when you receive contact from MEC Security.
Talk to them
You should not ignore the correspondence you have received from MEC Security. Ignoring them will not mean the debt disappears, and it will not prevent them from trying to track you down. Enforcement agents such as MEC Security may end up adding an extra fee to deal with the debt. These include:
- Compliance – £75. The cost of sending an enforcement notice with a request for payment
- Enforcement – £235 (or 7.5% over £1500). A charge for visiting your home or business to remove the goods as payment
- Sale of goods – £110 (or 7.5% over £1500). The cost of taking items and selling them to recover the debt costs
Even if the debt doesn’t belong to you, you should reply to any letters or calls you receive before they get the chance to send someone to your property. Make sure you know if you are liable and then take the appropriate action.
Get confirmation of the debt
If you are questioning whether you owe the debt, you should ask for confirmation. It could be that you have already paid off the debt, or they are chasing the wrong person. It is important that you get confirmation that this is yours, before you start making any payments. It may be the case that this is not yours to pay.
You may not even be required to pay the debt, even if it does belong to you, if you haven’t make a payment or spoken to the creditor in six years or more. If you were pressured into signing the agreement, or there was no affordability test carried out, you may not be required to pay back the debt. The creditor must have checked you could afford to take out the credit.
Pay your debt
If you receive confirmation that this is your debt, you would be liable to take care of it. If you are able to, the best option is to clear the debt as quickly as possible. If you pay the debt, MEC Security will not keep contacting you, and you won’t need to worry about receiving any correspondence from them. If you do pay, make sure you get confirmation and a receipt.
If you cannot pay off the debt, you should be able to set up a repayment plan that works for your situation. Contact MEC Security and advise them of your financial situation. They may stop any additional fees or charges being added to your debt, as long as you have a payment plan in place.
Dealing With MEC Security Debt
If you are looking for help in dealing with MEC Security or any other debt you may have, there are plenty of options available to you. You should speak to them in the first instance, and advise them of your financial situation. If you cannot pay and need some help, there are various ways you can deal with the debt.
You may be able to write off a chunk of the debt through an IVA. You can put all your debt together with an IVA, and make one single payment towards it. You will be able to write off any debt that is still remaining after a set period of around five years.
There are also other debt management options available, and the best option will depend on your circumstances. The potential options include: debt management plans, consolidation loans, and bankruptcy. You should assess these options and speak to a professional if you are unsure of the most suitable debt management programme for your situation.
If you are unsure how to deal with the correspondence you have received from MEC Security, you should speak to the Citizens Advice. They have skilled, experienced staff who can offer advice and check any correspondence for you. They also deal with other issues you are facing.
You only need to take a quick glance through the Trustpilot reviews of MEC Security to find out similar experiences to yours. If you need to, you can make a complaint.
If you want to complain to the bailiff company you can use our free letter template which outlines exactly what you should say.
If you do not receive a satisfactory response, you can escalate it to the Financial Ombudsman Service who will take the matter further.
MEC Security – Final Words
It is not pleasant to have to deal with enforcement agents like MEC Security. As long as you understand your rights, you will be in a better position to deal with them. It is vital that you don’t just ignore the correspondence they issue, as the problem won’t just go away. If they do decide to visit your home, you don’t have any obligation to allow them access to your property, unless they can provide a warrant or writ. In this case, just inform them that you will speak to the head office at MEC Security.
Is there anything bailiffs cannot do?
They must only come to your home at certain times, such as between 6am and 9pm. They must also provide 7 days notice of their plans to visit. They cannot use force either to try and get you out the way.
What is the maximum amount of times a bailiff may visit?
There is no limit on how many times the bailiff can visit. The restriction is on the time they can visit, i.e. between 6am and 9pm.
Can I refuse entry to the bailiff?
If you refuse entry, they may return at some point to get entry via a locksmith. You may not even be home when they do this.
Are bailiffs permitted to break down your door?
No. They must not break your door down. If they do need access, they should use a locksmith instead. They cannot enter your property via any other means than the door.
I need my car for work, can the bailiff take it?
The bailiff is allowed to take your car, regardless of if you need it from work. You may try and hide it away, but they can still take it, even if it parked on another street, even private property, unless it is not yours.