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Greetings, I loanded my daughter my car to do shopping, she is a single mother with 3 children and on benefits,as she pulled up in the drive today a bailliff approached her about an outstanding coucil tax bill of £282.96 and ask for payment, she could not pay the full amount,he then asked could he come in and discuss payment she said no,he then said he would take the car to be sold, he was infomed that it was not hers, his reply was I`ll take it anyway its for you to prove it`s not yours, a few minutes later he put a notice of seizure of goods through the door with my car details on, he also added £32.00 levy and walking possession fee to the bill.It states on the notice that unless paid in 5 days it will be sold.

1) How do I get this removed?

2)Who can I complain to about this as this is an illegal notice of seizure (is there an ombudsman ?)

3) if there are any scribes out there who could draft me a letter of complaint I would be most grateful

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get your daughter to send a letter (recorded delivery) to Jacobs telling them that she is not the owner of the car levied and ask them to remove all charges associated with the levy

Jacobs can do a dvla check to confirm ownership

copy letter to council include this in your letter to Jacobs and the council

 

April 2010 Insight – Local Government Ombudsmanlink3.giflink3.gif

 

 

As it has become increasingly difficult for bailiffs to gain access to debtors’ homes for the purpose of taking goods for council tax, the practice of levying on vehicles in the absence of the debtor has grown. These vehicles may be parked on the debtor’s property or in the road outside. This practice, if abused, can lead to the Local Government Ombudsman finding fault with the bailiffs and the council employing them.

 

The Ombudsman has dealt with at least four unreported complaints when cars parked in the road were levied on, but did not belong to the debtor. In each case the bailiffs assumed that the vehicle belonged to the debtor, but did not check ownership before making the levy. In one case, having levied on the car, a notice was put through the debtor’s letterbox including the fees. As the debtor did not respond, the bailiffs returned to remove the car, but found it was no longer there. Despite not being able to levy on the goods the bailiffs charged a “van fee” (under head C of Schedule 5 of the 1992 Administration and Enforcement Regulations, as amended) of £105, and posted a further notice through the letterbox to advise the debtor of the new, higher debt.

 

In three other complaints, involving a different authority, the same thing happened – with levy and van fees being charged for cars not owned by the debtors. In those cases the debtors contacted the bailiffs to say that they did not own the cars. The bailiffs acknowledged this, but still insisted that the levy and van fees were payable. When our investigator queried this with the council, they were told that the bailiffs would have checked with the DVLA before moving the car, but even if the debtor did not own the car the levy fees would not have been removed.

 

These practices are likely to result in a finding of administrative fault by the Ombudsman. There is no question that when bailiffs have carried out a relevant action, they are entitled to the fees the law allows them to charge. However in these cases the levy and van fees were being charged for goods that the bailiff would not have removed - had the car been found and the bailiffs checked before removal, it would have been found they belonged to a third party.

 

A council may say that a check would be made before any removal, but this does not prevent possible fault. Some debtors will pay when they receive the levy or other notices, and will pay fees that should not have been charged to them. Levying on a car parked on someone’s drive may appear less problematic as it is more likely to belong to the debtor. But if it does not, and levy and van fees are charged and paid, then the debtor has suffered the injustice of paying fees that were not due.

 

In all four cases the Ombudsman recommended the same remedy. The levy and van fees should be refunded and the council should ensure their bailiffs check ownership of vehicles with the DVLA before levying on them. Debtors should pay what they owe, and if a vehicle belongs to the debtor (and any levy would not be excessive) then levying and charging reasonable fees would not be questioned by the Ombudsman.

 

All councils are encouraged to ensure their written policies say that bailiffs, whether internal or external, do not levy on vehicles without first checking ownership. Failure to do so could mean that any future complaints to the Ombudsman may be the subject of a public report against the authority.

 

 

Andrew Hobley is Senior Investigator with the Local Government Ombudsman.

 

user_offline.gifreputation.gif report.gif

 

 

 

 

http://www.consumeractiongroup.co.uk/forum/bailiffs-sheriff-officers/262730-has-bailiff-levied-upon.html

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thanks she will do the letter for jacobs even though they should have done the check first. Now I am going to complain to the council and Jacobs on my own behalf as they have caused me undue stress and ? as I cannot now visit my daughter as I am in fear that they will carry out their threat to illegally seize my car and use this as a way of coercing her to make payment agreements she can not afford

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how do you prove a cars not yours? you can prove goods are n`t with receipts ccas and such but you have nothing to say the cars not yours

 

 

DVLA check will confirm the registered keeper (who is not necessarily the owner)

A statutory declaration can also be done

 

as your daughters on benefits ask them to take payments direct from her benefit

adapt this letter send to Jacobs and the council (recorded delivery)

 

NOTE: This letter can be adapted to suit your own circumstances and could be used to advise the company that you are in receipt of income support or income based jobseekers allowance and that you wish for your arrears of Council Tax to be deducted at source from your benefits and requesting that the account is returned back to the local authority. You should provide a photocopy if possible, of either your benefit book or confirmation of your entitlement from the benefits agency.

 

 

To: Bailiff Company

Date:

Dear Sirs,

Re: Account reference.

I refer to your letter dated (enter date) informing me that your company have been instructed by (enter local authority) to enforce a warrant/liability order etc against me, in respect of arrears of council tax.

In your letter you state that you will be visiting/returning to my home to
(seize/auction etc my goods.)
unless full payment of
(enter amount)
is made by return.

The purpose of this letter is to advise your company that I am in receipt of
(income support/jobseekers allowance)
and am enclosing as proof, a copy of
(payment book/letter from benefits agency.)

I am informed that deductions can be made directly from my benefits to pay my arrears of council tax. This is provided for in the Council Tax (Deductions from Income Support) Regulations 1993.

For this reason, I would like to request that this account be referred back to
(local authority)
(local authority) so that the relevant forms can be completed.

I am also aware that once deductions are in place, Regulation 52 of The Council Tax (Administration & Enforcement) Regulations 1992 expressly forbids any enforcement action.

As I have now made you aware of
(my/our)
circumstances, and provided proof, if your company continues with enforcement action, I will consider making a formal complaint about the bailiff’s conduct to the County Court

Could you please confirm safe receipt of this letter, a copy of which is being sent to my local authority.

 

Yours Faithfully.

 

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just been to jacobs to hand deliver letters of complaint about notice of seizure on my car and the levies charged,they point blank refused to remove anything saying the levy must stay and the are entitled to do this, any advice on the next step

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If they want to steal your car they will pay the consequences, There are two seperate issues here. HW has provided an excellent template for your daughter to use.

 

 

You as the third party have a complaint in that your car has been subjected to a levy at another address other than your own, for a debt that is not yours. Have you sent a seperate complaint and provided proof the car is registered to you to both Phillips and the CEO of the Council if the answer is yes then you have nothing to worry about

 

You can of course go to the police and tell them that attempts are being made to steal your car and when they say it is a civil matter please do make sure you get the desk officers name and number and ask how a criminal act of attempted theft can be seen as a civil matter? Make sure you get an incident no after making the report.

 

WD

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just been to jacobs to hand deliver letters of complaint about notice of seizure on my car and the levies charged,they point blank refused to remove anything saying the levy must stay and the are entitled to do this, any advice on the next step

What you SHOULD be doing is hand delivering a letter marked FORMAL COMPLAINT to the local authority as they are WHOLLY RESPONSIBLE for the any levy and charges applied by their bailiffs.

 

You should say to the COUNCIL that if the levy and fees are not REMOVED within 24 hours that you will be asking that a copy of your complaint is sent to the Local Government Ombudsman !!

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I went to jacobs, mrs went to council to hand deliver letters, letter of complaint and the daughters situation plus a copy of the goverment ombudsmans report posted above. council have said the bailiffs CAN levy on any car my daughter is in and will only do a dvla prior to taking the car.

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I went to Jacobs, Mrs went to council to hand deliver letters, letter of complaint and the daughters situation plus a copy of the government ombudsman's report posted above. council have said the bailiffs CAN levy on any car my daughter is in and will only do a dvla prior to taking the car.

 

 

council and bailiffs only talk bailiff

A bailiff has the right to assume Prima facie (Latin expression meaning on its first appearance, or at first sight) as in this situation the bailiff seen your daughter driving the car

 

However the owner of the car(who is not the debtor) has now come forward and informed them that they are the owner of the car this should be enough for the bailiffs to do a dvla check to confirm ownership

 

I assume the council told your wife this(not in writing) you will need to wait on a formal reply in writing to your letters of complaint from bailiffs and council to take your complaint to the next level

 

what did you put in your letter to the bailiffs and council

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he didnt see her driving the car the she was emptying the boot, he was informed she was not the owner, that should have been reason enough to do a dvla check,I was also under the impression that bailiffs could not levy on goods they could not take, or that they should not take goods way above the level of the debt, debt £300.00 car value about 8k

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he didn't see her driving the car the she was emptying the boot, he was informed she was not the owner, that should have been reason enough to do a dvla check,I was also under the impression that bailiffs could not levy on goods they could not take, or that they should not take goods way above the level of the debt, debt £300.00 car value about 8k

 

 

sorry i thought she was driving it you are correct that should have been enough reason to confirm ownership before levying it(especially now in view of the resent ombudsman's report ) however the bailiff heres this all the time thats why they still do the levy

 

once this is put in writing that the levy is invalid as the car does not belong to the debtor they should do a dvla check to confirm ownership and remove fees

 

 

no they cant levy on goods they cant take

 

If a bailiff Levy's goods in your home they cant over levy the usual rule is they levy goods to the value of 10x the debt

 

If they cant get a levy in your home they will levy on a debtors car

they can levy on a jumbo jet for a parking ticket /council tax if it belongs to the debtor this would not be classed as an excessive levy as it was the only goods available to levy at the time of the visit

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they have a statement (jacobs & council) from my daughter stating she is not the owner jacobs verbal reply was we are not removing anything I`ve ask that they put that in writing and the reasons why they will not remove charges from a third party`s car

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they have a statement (jacobs & council) from my daughter stating she is not the owner jacobs verbal reply was we are not removing anything I`ve ask that they put that in writing and the reasons why they will not remove charges from a third party`s car

 

Adapt this letter for your own needs and take a copy of it to your Council - inform them you are giving them 48/72 hours notice to have this sorted by the Bailiff - their Contractor - or you will have no hesitation in putting the matter to the local Magistrates Court for action.

 

 

"Mr Jo Blogs

1, High Street

Anytow

Post Code.

 

The Chief Clerk

xxxx Magistrates Court

 

Date:

 

Dear Sir/Madam

 

Council Ref: xxxxxx

 

I am writing to request that you issue a Summons against xxxxxxx Council by virtue of Regulation 46 Council Tax (Administration and Enforcement) Regs 1992 as a matter of urgency.

 

 

I am aggrieved by the levy carried out by Mr Smith of ABC Certificated Bailiffs on (enter date) for the following reason:

 

* The Bailiff visited my premises and he has provided a Notice of Seizure of Goods & Inventory advising me that he has levied against a vehicle that was outside/on the drive of my home.

* This vehicle is not owned by me. I do not know the owner of the vehicle and it would appear that the Bailiff has assumed that this is my car because it was parked close to my home.

* The Bailiff in seizing this vehicle, has charged me a levy fee of £50 together with an enforcement fee of £150 and I am advised that unless I pay the amount of the Laibility Order of £xxx together with the charges associated with this levy, that the Bailiff will be attending at my property to remove this vehicle to satisy my Council Tax arreas and in addition I will also be liable for further charges for "attending to remove" and I could also be in position of being personally liable to the owner of the vehicle.

* I have written to the Bailiff Company and the local authority concerning this levy but my complaints have been ignored.

 

I trust that this information will be sufficient and please do not hesitate to contact me if you require any further information.

Yours faithfully"

 

PT

ps - please excuse spelling but had dyslexic fingers whilst typing.

Please consider making a small donation to help keep this site running

 

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jeez just had a horrible vision,bailiff standing in the garden shades on black coat holding and stroking the kids pet rabbit and saying "pay up or the bunny gets it" I must be losin it lol

You have been watching too much TV lolol

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  • 3 weeks later...

received letter from wbc today, It states the bailiff acted correctly, think not but this is the bit that amuses me: I am sorry for any upset and inconvenience this may have caused you but I am satisfied that jacobs acted correctly in this case.I can confirm that the levy on your has been removed and that NO FURTHER ACTION WILL BE TAKEN AGAINST YOU OR YOUR VEHICLE IN THIS MATTER. mmmmmmmmmm wonder what they where going to do to me, put me in the stocks, name and shame me as a relative of a poll tax defaulter.

I AM INNOCENT!

FREE THE DOG!

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The council said the bailiff acted correctly because he" THOUGHT" it was her car, he was told it wasnt so there was a doubt to who owned the car,he should have checked before levying, could this be a case of fraud under 2006 fraud act? and if so, with the council agreeing with his actions they would be open to a charge of misfeance

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The council said the bailiff acted correctly because he" THOUGHT" it was her car, he was told it wasnt so there was a doubt to who owned the car,he should have checked before levying, could this be a case of fraud under 2006 fraud act? and if so, with the council agreeing with his actions they would be open to a charge of misfeance

 

I would go along with that, you took every avenue open to you to show he was mistaken and he was not prepared to act on any of the information given. under the circumstances and given the evidence supplied he had it within his own power to substantiate his beliefs the car belonged to the debtor, it can be clearly seen he chose not to act accordingly and chose to deliberately continue with attempts to extract money from you frauduently.

 

WD

 

WD

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