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    If you have moved and the correspondence about your judgment was given to your old address, then enforcement fails. If you received a judgment without you knowing at your old address and the bailiff has traced you and turned up unexpectedly at your new address, the law says the enforcement is invalid. You can apply to stay the writ and set aside the judgment. The creditor may bring fresh proceedings. If the bailiffs do not know your new address, you must not give it to them.

    You have moved – but you don’t want to give your new address to bailiffs.

    If you have moved a bailiff may take the law into their own hands and try to trace your new address if they have discovered you are no longer living at your previous address.

    Paragraph 12 of the Taking Control of Goods National Standards 2014 states;

    Creditors must not issue a warrant knowing that the debtor is not at the address, as a means of tracing the debtor at no cost.

    They will call at your new address in a surprise visit and catch you unawares.

    They stand to gain financially because they charge the £235 enforcement stage fee together with the £75 compliance stage fee knowing you are unaware of the law that requires you to be given notice before a bailiff attends.

    Enforcement regulations do not provide for bailiffs to execute warrants of control or liability orders without following the prescribed enforcement procedure.

    That procedure includes sending the debtor a notice before starting enforcement. Paragraph 7(1) of Schedule 12 of the Tribunals Courts and Enforcement Act 2007 reads:

    An enforcement agent may not take control of goods unless the debtor has been given notice.

    Regulation 8(1)(e) of the Taking Control of Goods Regulations 2013 reads:

    (e)where the debtor is an individual, to the debtor personally;

    Interestingly, failure to issue a notice before attending revokes all the fees the bailiff is charging. Regulation 3 of the Taking Control of Goods (Fees) Regulations 2014 says:

    These Regulations apply when an enforcement agent uses the Schedule 12 procedure.

    You can bring an action to recover the money under paragraph 66(3) of Schedule 12 of the Tribunals Courts and Enforcement Act 2007.

    Further requirements on giving notice varies with the type of debt being enforced.

    Council tax

    Regulation 33(1) of the Council Tax (Administration and Enforcement) Regulations 1992 says a “final Notice” must be sent, or a “reminder” must be sent under regulation 23(1)

    You can decline to give your new address but you must continue paying the council tax online until the liability order sum is paid or appealed.

    Local Authority Traffic Debts – PCNs

    Part 75.7(7) of the Civil Procedure Rules requires the authority to reissue the warrant by filing a request with the Traffic Enforcement Centre if the address of the debtor has changed since the issue of the original warrant.

    If you want to appeal the penalty then this requires disclosure of your old address and new address potentially exposing your whereabouts to bailiffs. If you don’t want to give your new address then approach the council and make an offer of payment, if the council palms you off with ‘contact the bailiffs’ then consider the matter closed and the warrant will expire after 12 months (if issued before 06 April 2013) and it dies. You could still become a victim of an ANPR van.

    Magistrates’ Court fines

    Pay the fine at court using the ATM machine in the court lobby, or pay it online, and as far as the court is concerned, the power conferred under the warrant of control ceases to have effect. Court staff call the payments machine a “drop-box”.

    The bailiff company might still try and trace you just to recover his fees.

    County Court Judgment, and High Court Enforcement Officers (HCEOs).

    a High Court writ can ONLY be executed at the address the debtor usually lives or carries on trade or business.

    Apply to get the writ and judgment set aside and enforcement action ceases.

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