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Parking Mate UK

How To Challenge Bailiff Enforcement Notice

Bailiffs cannot force you to pay a penalty charge notice.

We provide step by step instructions to challenge bailiff enforcement and stop their action. Whether your vehicle has been clamped or taken, we can help.

How To Stop Bailiff Enforcement

To stop enforcement, you have to complete documents and send them to the Traffic Enforcement Centre (the TEC). If you apply to have the bailiff warrant suspended, the bailiff has to stop all enforcement action and wait for the TEC to give a final decision on your case.

Can bailiffs enforce a parking fine?

A bailiff (‘enforcement agent’) may visit your home if you do not pay your debts – such as Council Tax bills, parking fines, court fines and county court, high court or family court judgments. (Government website on bailiffs)

If you do not pay a penalty charge notice, the council can apply to the Traffic Enforcement Centre (TEC) for a debt to be registered and a warrant to be issued. The bailif then uses the warrant to enforce the penalty charge notice.

A penalty charge notice must first be issued to you, and if you do not appeal or pay, the council can apply for a warrant to chase for payment. If you never received the PCN, this is a good reason to have the warrant cancelled.

A warrant must be issued by the TEC before the bailiff can contact you and demand payment. The warrant will be issued after the the TEC issue an order for recovery. At this stage of enforcement, the order for recovery is the document to challenge if you want to stop enforcement.

Before the bailiff can attend, they must send a notice of enforcement, this will inform you of the amount, the reason of visit and give you 7 clear days before they visit. If you have not received this document, you can complain about unlawful enforcement.

The bailiff enforcement officer will visit your home and attempt to secure goods either by entering if invited or by putting a clamp on your car. The bailiff officer can also take your car if they wish.

Please note: A vehicle can be secured anywhere on public land. But they can not take your vehicle on private land.

Challenge The Bailiff Warrant

You can challenge the warrant and get it cancelled. When the warrant is cancelled, the bailiffs will have to stop chasing you for payment and wait for the TEC to respond with a final decision.

1. Challenge the Order for Recovery or Warrant of Control

Avoid Paying Bailiff Fees

You never have to pay the bailiffs any money at all. Any payment made to the bailiff simply goes to their pockets and they give the council the amount owed. Once payment is made to the council, the council will have to stop the enforcement process.

2. Paying the Council Directly

The bailiff is not entitled to any fees after the debt is settled with the council. If the bailiff persists, challenge the warrant and state that payment was made and provide evidence.

Complaning About Bailiffs

The job of being a bailiff is not easy for the people doing it. However, often, they do not always follow the rules correctly and therefore, you have a case for a formal complaint to be raised. 

Remember, bailiffs are representing the council, so you should complain about unfair treatment to the council using their complaints process. You can see recent complaints at the LGO where other motorists have complained about bailiffs and successfully won. Complaints can be anything from unfairly clamping a vehicle, entering your home or making you pay.

3. How to Complain to the Council and LGO

Frequently Asked Questions

How to stop enforcement

As soon as you send an application to the Northampton County Court, bailiff enforcement will be stopped by 4pm the next working day and bailiffs can not contact you again until you receive a response to your application from the TEC. Please process above for forms to complete.

If the bailiff has not behaved correctly

Bailiffs may only enter your home if you invite them in or the opportunity to enter was not by force. They must however treat you fairly and if you are vulnerable, such as in financial difficulty, disabled, pregnant, have trouble speaking english, they must take extra care. Failure to do so is the basis of a complaint to the council and LGO.

Support for bailiff enforcement

You can use our apps to write witness statements and statutory declarations. If we need to write a letter of complaint to the council, we can prepare your correspondence and handle the complaint for you. Please get in touch with us via the home page.

Raising a complaint

If you believe that the enforcement process has not been fair, you can raise a complaint to the council and should you be unhappy with their response, you can then complain to the Local Goverment Ombudsman. The ombudsman can only investigate issues relating to wrongful enforcement and not the reasons related to the PCN itself.

Challenge Bailiff Notice