Marc Gander - The Consumer Survival Handbook


A 220 page introduction to all things consumer related by our own BankFodder.

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Patricia Pearl - Small Claims Procedure - A Practical Guide


An excellent guide for the layperson in how to use the County Court - a must if you are intending to start a claim.

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  1. #1

    Default Builder has stopped paying agreed CCJ

    Hello All

    A few years ago I took my builder to court for shoddy workmanship and a CCJ was served against the builder to pay just over 5000. He pleaded poverty and, feeling a little pity on him, I accepted a monthly payment of 40, which by my calculations would take him over 10 years to pay back. Anyway, in the first few years he missed the odd payment which I ignored but for the past 6 months he has stopped paying all together.

    I am considering taking action to recover the rest of the amount he owes which is still over 4000.
    But I am unsure what method i use, as there is so much conflicting information out there.

    As I see it I have 2 choices
    1. take out a Writ of Control, which I understand will result in a bailiff turning up at his home and demanding the full debt paid or
    2. take out am Order to Obtain Information which I believe will bring him back to court to explain his current financial situation.

    I like the first option, as he has messed me about and I'd like to be rid of him really but I feel he will plead poverty again, (even though he is has recently bought a flashy new builders van and a new executive home). and so Bailiffs may not be able to recover much.

    Using the 2nd option he will most likely offer a nominal monthly repayment and later down the line start missing payments again.

    Can anyone advice whats the best approach and how do I go about this to stand any chance of recovering the rest of the debt?

    Any help much appreciated.

    M2


  2. #2

    Default Re: Builder has stopped paying agreed CCJ

    neither
    go ring one of the HCEO firms like 'the sheriffs officers' - its over 600 they'll do everything for you fee is <100 I think

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  3. #3
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    Default Re: Builder has stopped paying agreed CCJ

    Make sure that they are doing is on a no collection - no fee basis. They all do - but get it in writing

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  4. #4

    Default Re: Builder has stopped paying agreed CCJ

    Thanks BankFodder and dx100uk for your very quick responses.

    - "neither - go ring one of the HCEO firms like 'the sheriffs officers" Really?? I thought I would have to issue a Warrant of Control in order to pass it on the a HCEO???


  5. #5
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    Default Re: Builder has stopped paying agreed CCJ

    You have a judgement. That is all you need. The only slight complication is that the judgement is partially satisfied. Telephone HCEO and talk to them about it.

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  6. #6

    Default Re: Builder has stopped paying agreed CCJ

    Thanks BankFodder - I will ring someone on Monday and keep you guys posted.
    M2


  7. #7

    Default Re: Builder has stopped paying agreed CCJ

    How does the builder trade - sole trader, partnership, ltd company? If a sole trader are you sure he has assets - he may have a nice sparkly van but the chances are it is not his? When was your original Judgment obtained?

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  8. #8

    Default Re: Builder has stopped paying agreed CCJ

    Hi Ploddertom -

    The CCJ was issued 4 years ago.
    I believe he is a sole trader. Other than his new home, which he bought only last year according to Land Registry, I have no idea if he has any other assets.

    As for his van, I believe that even if that was his own, since he needs it for his work, just like his tools, it cannot be taken by the HCEOs.

    Which is why I thought perhaps bringing him to court to declare his financial situation under oath in front of a judge might be better. At least I would know what he is capable of paying. But it is not clear from reading some of the threads what is the best way to go about this either. there seems 2 ways
    with an EX324 Order to Obtain Information
    or by completing Form N316 (Application for an order that the judgment debtor attends court for questioning).
    Either way, in the end he can continue to play cat and mouse by agreeing to pay a new amount and then defaulting!


  9. #9
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    Default Re: Builder has stopped paying agreed CCJ

    If he is a sole trader and he has just bought a new home and if that home is in his own name then you should immediately start having the judgement transferred up for enforcement by HCEO.

    Speak to them about any difficulties enforcing a judgement which is part satisfied.

    You say that he now has a new home have you checked with the land registry that he is actually the owner? You can do a land registry search on the Internet.

    I think that if you went for enforcement by HCEO against his own home then there would be very little he could do and I expect that he would want to deal with it quickly to avoid further trouble.

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  10. #10

    Default Re: Builder has stopped paying agreed CCJ

    .
    Hi Avatar - I have done the Land Registry search. He is down as the Registered Owner(s) on the Title deeds, but reading further in the deeds the house is leasehold with 999 years lease. not sure if that makes any difference for my purposes.


  11. #11

    Default Re: Builder has stopped paying agreed CCJ

    Quote Originally Posted by mm2 View Post
    Hi Ploddertom -

    The CCJ was issued 4 years ago.
    I believe he is a sole trader. Other than his new home, which he bought only last year according to Land Registry, I have no idea if he has any other assets.

    As for his van, I believe that even if that was his own, since he needs it for his work, just like his tools, it cannot be taken by the HCEOs. As its value will probably be over 1350 hen it will not be exempt from seizure unless of course it is on finance which is what I would expect it to be.
    My reasons for asking how old this was is because it comes across strongly the payment you both agreed to was done mutually and if it had got to over 6 yearsicon then it may have been awkward. Someone earlier gave you an idea of the type of HCEO you need to contact and it would certainly pay you to speak to them on Monday morning
    - cost of applying is approx 66 - find the time to go to https://thesheriffsoffice.com/ and have a good read of the various articles on there
    - in particular the FAQ's.

    Whatever you do steer clear of the company that appears on Ch 5.

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  12. #12

    Default Re: Builder has stopped paying agreed CCJ

    sounds like you are onto a winner here.

    I've done this twice for people, both times they got their money

    but if it fails then that doesn't rule out court action.

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  13. #13

    Default Re: Builder has stopped paying agreed CCJ

    We had a judgement against a person and when they stopped paying, we got the bailiffs in. He came up with the balance of the the money within 2 hours as the bailiffs possessed is nice new Jaguar car.


  14. #14

    Default Re: Builder has stopped paying agreed CCJ

    Was that back in the time before they had to give notice?

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  15. #15

    Default Re: Builder has stopped paying agreed CCJ

    Quote Originally Posted by mm2 View Post
    As for his van, I believe that even if that was his own, since he needs it for his work, just like his tools, it cannot be taken by the HCEOs.
    Only if they are worth less than 1350, otherwise the bailiffs can take them.


  16. #16

    Default Re: Builder has stopped paying agreed CCJ

    Hi All
    I have spoken to the Sheriffs Office this morning, who say if they are successful then they will charge the Debtor for their work, not me.
    But if they are unsuccessful at recovering the whole debt they will charge me a "compliance fee" of 75+vat!

    Something that really puzzles me is that if they are not successful or only part successful, ie they only collect assets for part of the whole debt then, then although I am still charged the 75 they will continue to chase the debtor. Their email says - "This does not cover our costs, therefore it is in our interest to successfully execute the Writ in order to obtain our fees. Please see our terms of business for full conditions.".

    I have checked their T&Cs on their website and these are, as I expected quite complicated but it suggests they take 35% of whatever they recover!
    This does not sit well with me if it is correct.

    Am I reading this right?
    Can they do that?
    I would much rather placed some sort of order on his house and recover the whole of the remaining debt that way.
    It doesn't make sense going through with SO anymore.

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  17. #17

    Default Re: Builder has stopped paying agreed CCJ

    they dont keep 35% of what they recover, they add that to the amount they demand from the debtor and this is on a sliding scale according to the size of the debt. The 75 fee is normal and that amount is set by law so wont vary from agent to agent.


  18. #18

    Default Re: Builder has stopped paying agreed CCJ

    That is not how I am reading it.
    It says in the T&Cs -10.4 "All money is split after 200 is received from the defendant and that from the first 200, the 90 Compliance Fee is retained, and the remaining of 110 is split on a 65%/35% basis between the judgment debt, costs and interest, against our fees incurred under the Writ. All future money thereafter is split on a 65%/35% basis."


  19. #19

    Default Re: Builder has stopped paying agreed CCJ

    You are reading too much into the context.

    If the debtor pays in full then you will get every last penny back and the Enforcement Co gets to keep their fees (charged on top of the debt).

    If an agreement is reached to pay by instalments then the payments are apportioned so that both yourself & the Enforcement Co get a continuing income stream which is what the % split is all about.

    When eventually it is all paid you will have received what you claimed for originally in full and they will only have recovered their fees.

    They will NOT be taking a proportion of the debt for themselves unlike Claims Management Cos who do take a %age as their commission.

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  20. #20

    Default Re: Builder has stopped paying agreed CCJ

    Aha! Thanks ploddertom - you've explained it perfectly to a layman.

    I have also been recommended the use of DCB Ltd, but their split is 50/50, Is this the company you warned me of in your earlier post ?

    Does anyone have any experience of using either The Sheriffs Office or DCBL?


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