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Enforcing a County Court Judgment
Once Judgment has been obtained in the County Court and if the debtor has still not been paid, the next step will be to enforce this Judgment. There are various ways to enforce a Judgment and at this stage, we will advise you of the appropriate method for your debt, depending on the debtor's circumstances.
If your debtor owns or has an interest in a property, it is possible to secure your Judgment against the property. Although the charge does not guarantee immediate payment, it does secure the debt and interest accrues at 8% per annum. It is usually worth getting a Charge on a property if there is equity in the property.
Order for sale
Once you have a Charging Order you can enforce it by an application to sell the property.
County Court Bailiff / High Court Enforcement Officer
A County Court Bailiff or High Court Enforcement Officer will attend at the Defendant's premises and collect the money due, or take steps to enforce payment by seizing and selling goods, or will report back to you as to the Defendant’s assets. Entry can be forced into commercial premises e.g. by employing a locksmith to pick the lock but entry cannot be forced into residential premises. The items seized must generally be sold by auction.
The costs of instructing Bailiff/HCEO are partly recoverable from the debtor if the debt is collected in full. If the bailiff does not recover the debt, the costs are payable by you.
Attachment of Earnings Order
Where a debtor is working, this is often an appropriate method of enforcement. You will need to know the name and address of his/her employer. Your debt is paid out of the debtor's salary by the employer.
Third Party Debt Order
A Third Party Debt Order is usually made to stop the Defendant taking money out of his or her bank or building society account. The money you are owed is paid directly to you by the debtor's Bank/Building Society from their account. A Third Party Debt Order can also be made against anyone who owes the Defendant money
If the debtor is attempting to avoid enforcement, we can apply to the court for an order that the debtor attends before a court officer to answer questions with regard to their assets and means.
If your Judgment remains unsatisfied the option of insolvency exists if your debt is for an amount over £750. Visit our Insolvency Section for further information.