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Are the Bailiffs at your door?

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Are the bailiffs at your door, demanding payment for debt? The first step is not to panic. Easier said than done when you are facing the prospect of having your possessions taken, but there are steps you can take to make them go away.

Don’t bury your head

Prevention is always better than cure and therefore if you know you are going to miss a payment for any bill, contact your supplier or creditor to notify them. In many cases you may be permitted to rearrange payments as companies such as utility suppliers do not want to lose your custom and would rather receive the money that is owed than not at all.

If it has reached the stage that you are receiving letters threatening to send a debt collector, then contact the company immediately as fees can be added to your outstanding bill for someone coming to visit you at your address. You may be fearful of what reaction you will receive, but remember that it is better to tackle the situation head on rather than putting your head in the sand and hoping the situation will resolve itself. It will not.are bailiffs at your door?

Payment plans

Most creditors will devise a payment plan and if so, many will require a breakdown of you income and your outgoings. By providing this information as soon as possible, you will be beginning to rectifying your situation and can relax somewhat.

Perhaps you have been too frightened to approach your debtors and are only now realising the enormity of your situation. If bailiff letters lay ignored and you have been visited by one you still have certain rights which can help you tackle the problem.

Your Rights

In most instances bailiffs cannot make their own way into your property or enter without your permission.  The exceptions to this rule are when you owe stamp duty, criminal fines or income tax and even then it is in only extreme circumstances bailiffs can force their way into your home. You have the right to receive an itemised breakdown of your debt showing exactly what you owe and for what.

What can Bailiffs Do?

If you invite a bailiff into your home, they can take goods to the value of your debt; they can also add a further amount as payment for the confiscation of your goods. Bailiffs may also attempt to move your vehicle from outside your property. They can remove goods they believe to be yours from the property and the onus is on you to prove the items are not yours. They cannot however remove items used for work or objects that are considered to be essential. This can include, a laptop used for work, your fridge, cooker or clothes. Recreational objects can be taken.

REMEMBER

In most circumstances, you do not have to let a bailiff in, so if possible pay him at your door and ensure you receive a receipt to prove you have made a payment. The sensible option would be to agree to a direct debit or regular payment which has been mutually agreed upon so the bailiff does not have to frequent your doorstep at all. Always request at least one form of identification when making any payments to a bailiff and before allowing them into your home.

Helpful Organisations

Free advice about how to manage your debts can be obtained from Citizen’s Advice, National Debtline and the Money Advice Service.

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About Rebecca Robinson

About Rebecca Robinson

After spending the last 8 years juggling life as a mum of two, wife and working full time as a Project Manager for a global telecommunications company, Rebecca Robinson made the decision to follow her love of writing and took the plunge; turning her passion into a full time career. Since becoming a full time writer, Rebecca has worked with various media and copy-writing companies and with the ability to make any topic relevant and interesting to the reader, now contributes to The Working Parent on articles ranging from credit cards to teenage relationships. Ever the optimist, Rebecca's dreams for the future include a house in the country filled with children, dogs and horses in the field!

Website: Rebecca Robinson

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