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View Full Version : Property visited by bailiffs seeking ex-T; can I bar them?



Telometer
21-01-2009, 16:57 PM
Discovered a note for an ex-T through the door from the baliffs.

They threaten, as I guess they always do, to return an obtain access to remove property.

Do they have rights to break and enter to remove property?

If I happen to answer the door to them, and tell them to go away as they've got the wrong man, will they?

mind the gap
21-01-2009, 17:02 PM
Discovered a note for an ex-T through the door from the baliffs.

They threaten, as I guess they always do, to return an obtain access to remove property.

Do they have rights to break and enter to remove property?

If I happen to answer the door to them, and tell them to go away as they've got the wrong man, will they?

:eek: I don't know but I expect it would help to be able to prove your identity at some point, and a copy of your tenancy agreement showing dates of your tenancy might help, too.

It would be nice to think they couldn't just barge in and take out the furniture, wouldn't it?

islandgirl
21-01-2009, 17:04 PM
as I understand they can only enter if invited. However I have had walking possession notices put on a vehicle which I owned even though it was not my debt. They would just not believe me (yes madam, everyone we visit says it is not them...)

arusha
21-01-2009, 17:21 PM
I had a similar problem so I told my tenants to have a copy of their tenancy agreement and some ID to hand for if the bailiffs returned.

I told them to pass on my name and number (as the landlord) and I did get someone (perhaps from the police) call me and I just explained that the guy had left and that seemed to work. The man who called me said he had a warrant for the arrest of the guy though, they weren't after taking his stuff. (He was still getting a lot of mail from creditors and debt collection companies so he had obviously just done a runner.)

I also wrote a snotty letter to one company who were threatening to send bailiffs round, as when I phoned them up to say the man didn't live there any more, they were really rude (obviously didn't believe what I was saying). With the letter, I sent them an invoice for my time and said I would charge them for any future letters that I have to write (got that advice from this website). As would be expected, they didn't pay the invoice but I didn't get any more letters from them and as far as I am aware a bailiff never turned up. (Unless he did and the tenants never told me.)

mind the gap
21-01-2009, 17:52 PM
I had a similar problem so I told my tenants to have a copy of their tenancy agreement and some ID to hand for if the bailiffs returned.

I told them to pass on my name and number (as the landlord) and I did get someone (perhaps from the police) call me and I just explained that the guy had left and that seemed to work. The man who called me said he had a warrant for the arrest of the guy though, they weren't after taking his stuff. (He was still getting a lot of mail from creditors and debt collection companies so he had obviously just done a runner.)

I also wrote a snotty letter to one company who were threatening to send bailiffs round, as when I phoned them up to say the man didn't live there any more, they were really rude (obviously didn't believe what I was saying). With the letter, I sent them an invoice for my time and said I would charge them for any future letters that I have to write (got that advice from this website). As would be expected, they didn't pay the invoice but I didn't get any more letters from them and as far as I am aware a bailiff never turned up. (Unless he did and the tenants never told me.)

Useful advice, arusha - cheers. I suppose, given the nature of their job, they risk developing a fairly jaundiced view of all humanity.

Telometer
21-01-2009, 18:19 PM
My dear chaps, I hold the f/h...

mind the gap
21-01-2009, 18:31 PM
My dear chaps, I hold the f/h...

Oops - sorry. Of course you do. (I assumed you were the new tenant. I'm not psychic).

So - :)whack 'em round the head with your title deeds, my good man!

Paul Gibbs
22-01-2009, 08:52 AM
you do not have to answer the door to the bailiffs, however in your case it is probably wise to do so so that they dont pester you again.

show them your driving licence and also a copy of the letter from your solicitor that confirmed you had completed on your purchase.

should be enough to get rid of them

Mrs Jones
22-01-2009, 09:30 AM
This situation arose in the building where I have a flat. Tenants from the flat above had gone back to Poland. Amongst the mail lying around I noticed a letter addressed to them with big red boxes and saw the word "bailiff" through the envelope window. Not wishing to have bailiffs breaking down the main door etc. etc. and also having visions of the new tenants of the flat above (also a Polish couple) trying to explain that they were not the subject of the letter, I opened it. I wrote to the firm explaining who I was and informing them that the people concerned in the letter had returned to Poland and the date they left. Didn't hear any more from them.

mind the gap
22-01-2009, 09:36 AM
This situation arose in the building where I have a flat. Tenants from the flat above had gone back to Poland. Amongst the mail lying around I noticed a letter addressed to them with big red boxes and saw the word "bailiff" through the envelope window. Not wishing to have bailiffs breaking down the main door etc. etc. and also having visions of the new tenants of the flat above (also a Polish couple) trying to explain that they were not the subject of the letter, I opened it. I wrote to the firm explaining who I was and informing them that the people concerned in the letter had returned to Poland and the date they left. Didn't hear any more from them.

They gave up easily, then...although from what people have been posting (on this forum) recently about the species, I am coming to the conclusion that the modern bailiff is no longer the muscle-bound, Desperate Dan lookalike of popular mythology, so much as a weedy little bureaucrat who'll do anything for a quiet life and is quite glad when reprobate tenants don't answer the door.

Unfair to bailiffs, I hear the cry go up. (Or do I?)

caroline7758
22-01-2009, 09:46 AM
One of my tenants has contacted me several times over the last 3 years because of creditors chasing the previous tenant, and I've told him to give them my contact details to get the (last known!) address of the former tenant (they left owing me money too so I'm happy to pass it on!).

It's worth checking your credit record if this happens, as bad credit attched to your address could become attached to you.

Telometer
23-01-2009, 14:40 PM
>>It's worth checking your credit record if this happens, as bad credit attched to your
>>address could become attached to you.

This is a myth. Only if the previous resident were also called Caroline7758.


The notice referred to "obtaining entry by legal means". I guess this is through the open front door, and merely a threat?

Impartial Advice
23-01-2009, 15:06 PM
[/QUOTE]The notice referred to "obtaining entry by legal means". I guess this is through the open front door, and merely a threat?[/QUOTE]

Powers of entry are subject to case law. Only peaceable entry is allowed. Bailiffs cannot force entry to Residential property. IIRC peaceful entry can include entering an unlocked door or climbing through an open window but not booting down the door an putting resident in full nelson while mate rifles the property :cool:

johnboy
23-01-2009, 17:00 PM
So how much power does a court balif have? If you have judgement against someone via MCOL and then pay to get the court bailif round and all the tenant has to do is not let him in (and been pre-warned by the court) it seems pointless.

Or am i missing something??

Impartial Advice
23-01-2009, 17:07 PM
no your not missing a lot!! To be fair it does depend on what the debt is owed for and the powers of entry are stronger for commercial property.

Preston
23-01-2009, 19:14 PM
Hi

Last time I checked - which was some time ago - a bailiff could take walking possession of certain goods by looking through a window if access is not provided. After leaving the appropriate notices, they can then force access to take away those goods which are by then "in their possession".

In my experience they rarely did this and so the general advice was (and it seems still is) not to let them in.

Having said this, if its not you that owes the debt, I agree its best to speak directly to them and explain the situation. Court bailiffs are generally reasonable people.

Preston

Paul Gibbs
24-01-2009, 10:00 AM
Hi

Last time I checked - which was some time ago - a bailiff could take walking possession of certain goods by looking through a window if access is not provided.

Preston


I think thats wrong - they can take walk in possession but only for items specifically that they can (touch) they can take walk in possession of a car on a driveway, or items in the front or rear garden (if they can get access to the rear) but they must then specifically list the items they have taken possession of and leave a note setting this out.

In relation to items within the home the bailiff must have actually accessed the property - this can be through an unlocked door or unlocked window but they cannot use force to enter.

Once a bailiff has managed to access the property they can take walk in possession of any specific items simply by pointing at them (they used to have to actually touch the item but IIRC that is now no longer necessary). If the bailiff visits again then you must allow their entry as they obtained possession previously.

so if they have effected walk in possession previously and you lock them out so they cannot take the 46" LCD TV then IIRC they are allowed to force entry to get the possessions - althoguh they may need to get a specific order from the court for that!)

Preston
24-01-2009, 10:23 AM
I think thats wrong

Hi, yes, sorry, I have just checked and you are right that is no longer the case.

By the way, is it "walking" possession or "walk in" possession?

Preston

jeffrey
25-01-2009, 14:50 PM
Hi, yes, sorry, I have just checked and you are right that is no longer the case.

By the way, is it "walking" possession or "walk in" possession?

Preston
"Walking".

mind the gap
25-01-2009, 14:57 PM
Once a bailiff has managed to access the property they can take walk in possession of any specific items simply by pointing at them (they used to have to actually touch the item but IIRC that is now no longer necessary). If the bailiff visits again then you must allow their entry as they obtained possession previously.

so if they have effected walk in possession previously and you lock them out so they cannot take the 46" LCD TV then IIRC they are allowed to force entry to get the possessions - althoguh they may need to get a specific order from the court for that!)

What if the items in question have 'walked out' by the time the bailiff returns?