Stop bailiffs from turning up: your options
- Pay the Judgment straight away: if you don’t dispute that you owe the money, the best way to get rid of a bailiff is to settle the debt as soon as possible. Once you have received an enforcement notice, you have 7 days to pay before the bailiff can visit your premises, so if you settle the debt in this time, the bailiff won’t visit. Have a look at our pages on dealing with cash flow problems and alternative funding options.
- Apply to suspend the warrant / enforcement notice, and pay by instalments: you can apply to the court to temporarily suspend the warrant whilst you arrange an instalment plan. You need to file form N245 with the court whilst your creditor (and then the court) is given time to consider your plan. The court fee to do this is £50, but it can be well worth the cost to give you the breathing space to get on top of your finances and get an affordable agreement for repayment.
- Time To Pay with HMRC: if the debt is with HMRC, you may be able to negotiate a Time To Pay agreement. This must be done within the 7 day window, if you have already received an enforcement notice, which can be tricky though not impossible.
- Have the CCJ set aside: if the debt isn’t with HMRC and you dispute it, or you didn’t receive the original paperwork from the county court judgment, you can apply to the courts to have the judgment set aside or cancelled using Form N244. You’ll have to pay a fee to the courts to process the form that will be in the region of £255, but this may be more preferable than the alternative. Be aware that a high volume of set aside applications are rejected, so it may be worthwhile seeking legal advice on the strength of your case before you spend the money.
Talk to one of our experts
More often than not, a visit from a bailiff is a symptom of a much more complex problem with a business. If you have already received an enforcement notice, or you know that one is due, we can look at the scale of the problem with you, and help you come up with a longer-term plan to tackle the root issue.
If the enforcement notice has already been issued, we may need to make an initial deal with the bailiff, but we have good relationships with most enforcement agencies, and once they know that you are in the process of dealing with the problem, as long as the terms of any agreements are kept to, they are more likely to give you the time needed to put a plan in place.
If you have other debts or tax arrears as well, it is worth getting overall financial advice. Have a look at these helpful topics:
Or contact one of our business rescue experts directly.