19 Jun 2019 / Back to latest updates

Landlords – Have you been granted an Order for Possession (including judgment for money arrears) against your tenant – and are you unsure what to do next?

If you have been granted an Order for Possession against your tenant you sometimes have a judgment included for the money arrears. You are able to use this to take enforcement action (detailed below) against the debtor to recover the judgment sum.

We have contacts with tracing agents who can attempt to locate a new address for the debtor if you have no forwarding address. They usually agree to carry out this search on a no trace no fee basis so you will only pay their fee if the agent is successful. The fee is usually around £50 to £80 plus VAT.  

There is a variety of enforcement options available, including:

  • Warrant of execution (County Court Bailiff) – for debts below £5,000. The County Court sends Bailiffs to the debtor’s address to try to obtain payment and/or remove goods that are of value that can be sold at auction – the sale of these goods is then used to pay off the debt.
  • High Court Enforcement Officers – Writ of Control– the debt needs to be £600 or over. The Judgment obtained at the County Court is then transferred to the High Court for a Writ of Control or Writ of Possession. High Court Enforcement Officers attend the debtor’s address (similar to Warrant of Execution).
  • Attachment of Earnings Order– this is an order obtained by the court and served upon the debtor’s employer. An amount decided by the court is then deducted from the debtor’s wages and paid directly to the Creditor/Claimant. However, this is only applicable to debtors that are employed and not self-employed or receiving benefits.
  • Charging Order- this secures the debt owed to you against the debtor’s property. If the property is then sold or re-mortgaged the debt will be paid if there is sufficient equity in the property.
  • Bankruptcy/Winding up Petition – this is considered to be an option of last resort. The threat of such action can be very effective and will definitely focus the debtor’s mind on paying what they owe. This can be only be used on debts on or over £5,000 if the debtor is an individual or £750 if the debtor is a company.
  • Third Party Debt Order- in this case, the court orders that money owed by a third party to the debtor, is paid directly to the creditor/claimant. This type of order can also be used against a bank account in the debtor’s name; this sometimes leads, from a practical perspective, to the bank account being frozen until the date of a hearing of the application.

Our specialist debt recovery experts can advise you on the best route to maximise your recovery and guide you through each step.

For further information on possible enforcement proceedings or if you have any debt related questions please contact us.

The Debt Collection Centre recovers the debts that others can’t- powered by Devonshires Solicitors. We act for a variety of businesses including individuals, SMEs, sole traders, government agencies and companies.

The Debt Collection Centre


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