Recovering debt using High court enforcement

Recovering debt using High court enforcement

10:55 AM, 27th October 2017, About 6 years ago 36

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Hi guys, does anyone know what further recourse, (if any) one can resort to, to pursue a tenant debtor after high court enforcement agents (HCEA) have unsuccessfully tried to recover debts from him following a CCJ and how best to pursue such path? For instance,

1. Can one return to the county court to accept a low payment plan previously offered by the debtor? Or pursue other recovery options?

I am trying to understand this and in anticipation before I engage the services of a HCEA to pursue a debt of over £3K i.e. I want to understand my options based on different scenarios before I box myself in.

Thanks in advance of your response.


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Neil Patterson

9:57 AM, 27th October 2017, About 6 years ago

Hi Andy,

This is not an expert field for me but hopefully this page will assist: FREE Guide To Enforcing Judgements >>

Richard Adams

12:28 PM, 27th October 2017, About 6 years ago


You've got your CCJ you say, ordering the debtor (your tenant who owes you rent unpaid) to pay you the sum owing. He/she has ignored this like they have doubtless ignored the whole legal process.

Having been in a similar situation myself I did the following which is far and away best route forward. Engage the services of Debt Collection Bailliffs Ltd. (DCBL). Go here to get contact details etc

Provide them with the CCJ and pay £60 which is added to the debt so you will get it back and leave it to them. They write to the debtor adding fees to the debt giving a time frame to pay. Sometimes this does the trick (I've used them for other non property debts as well) because DCBL are well known from the Channel 5 TV programmes about them "Don't pay we'll take it away" so realistic debtors know there is no point any more in ignoring letters etc any more.

If debtor does not pay then the bailiffs will visit - early morning or whenever - and they don't mess about! If a visit is necessary the amount demanded goes up to include fees for the bailiffs so they are incentivized to succeed which they invariably do.

I cannot recommend them highly enough. Actually my success re unpaid rent involved chasing a guarantor. Obviously as with any debt you must be sure before you start that the debtor has the wherewithal to pay. DCBL though will take away cars, goods etc if necessary. At their visit the bailiffs might come back to you with offer from debtor of an amount with instalments to follow if they believe that is best way forward. Up to you to accept or not. In this scenario if instalment payments are not made the bailiffs will visit again. You don't get asked to pay them any more though. £60 in total is what you pay although I recall they charge you £90 if the debtor is completely skint in which case you were wasting your time going after him/her in first place.

Seriously this the way to go. I have found using solicitors who say they will recover debts and other bailiff set ups a complete waste of time and money. DCBL do the business. Good luck.


Chris @ Possession Friend

20:49 PM, 28th October 2017, About 6 years ago

HCEO do exactly the same as you've outlined DCBL do.
It would be interesting to know which HCEO you used, and what efforts they made and their suggestions for further action.

Richard Adams

22:40 PM, 28th October 2017, About 6 years ago

I've never used HCEO so cannot comment on their effectiveness. I repeat having used DCBL that they are impressive in the extreme having twice got debtors of mine to pay. The one who got visited squealed just like on the TV programme but in the end friends, relatives etc were summoned by him to get him off the hook and chipped in. Job done.

Had the debtor paid when the CCJ was sent to him he would have saved himself £1200 he ended up paying extra covering DCBL fees.

andy adewale

14:15 PM, 30th October 2017, About 6 years ago

Reply to the comment left by Neil Patterson at 27/10/2017 - 09:57
Thanks Neil. Apologies for the delay in my acknowledgment of your response. I've only just realised that you pasted a response last Friday. Thank very much much.

andy adewale

14:20 PM, 30th October 2017, About 6 years ago

Reply to the comment left by Richard Adams at 27/10/2017 - 12:28
Hi Richard
Many thanks for your considered comments. I agree with you entirely and I am already dealing with DBCL whose works I have seen to be excellent. It is m intention to use their services however my question does remain that in the unlikely event that they can't recover monies or asset from the tenant debtor, can one return to the county court afterwards?

Chris @ Possession Friend

14:20 PM, 30th October 2017, About 6 years ago

Reply to the comment left by Richard Adams at 28/10/2017 - 22:40
DCBL ' ARE ' High Court Enforcement Officers ( says so on their web site.
There are different HCEO companies out there, The Sheriffs Office, Excel and DCBL are some of them.
( Good to hear the feedback on DCBL though )

andy adewale

14:24 PM, 30th October 2017, About 6 years ago

Reply to the comment left by Chris Daniel at 28/10/2017 - 20:49
Hi Daniel
I am looking to use DBCL for use however, I want to be clear of the options available before I give them the go ahead on the case. Surprisingly, their staff that I have been dealing with has been unable to answer my question as to whether or not I can return the case to the county court in the unlikely event that they can't recover the debt. All she said was " we are not able to give you legal advice, you'll have to speak to a solicitor about that". I didn't ask for legal advice, all I require is procedural information!
Would you authoritatively know the answer to this question?

Chris @ Possession Friend

15:27 PM, 30th October 2017, About 6 years ago

Reply to the comment left by andy adewale at 30/10/2017 - 14:24
I would ask Excel or the Sheriff's office, I'm sure they'd be more helpful than the response you've had.

Richard Adams

16:32 PM, 30th October 2017, About 6 years ago


If DCBL can't recover the debt then nobody can. There will be debtors they visit who have stuck their head in the sand and not responded to initial claim, CCJ against them and subsequent follow up from DCBL who are quite unable to pay ie they are completely skint and have no family or friends who will rally round. Maybe they have no car or any possessions worth anything? I mentioned in an earlier post that before starting proceedings against anyone plaintiffs should have some expectation that the debtor can pay. If you know they are skint at outset then it's chucking good money, and time, after bad going after them.

When DCBL visit they know when someone is swinging the lead saying they are skint or not. They will report back to their client if they believe there is no chance of recovery. They don't like that outcome as they don't get paid either.

In that scenario what would be the purpose in returning the case to the County Court? Like DCBL say they are not legal advisers.

A CCJ judgement is enforceable up to five years after it is dated so during that period you can have another crack at recovery when maybe the debtor has found work and is earning and got him/herself sorted and DCBL can get a down payment and instalment plan set up. It will be a nasty shock for him/her having believed they have got away with screwing you!

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