This is the Government's response to the Transforming Bailiff Action consultation paper. The Government is committed to strengthening protections against rogue bailiffs and the response sets out the 19 recommendations made following examination of consultation responses.
The consultation received 254 responses from a variety of sources including the advice sector enforcement sector, public and private creditors, members of the public and the judiciary. The response document, covers the background to the consultation, a summary of responses, detailed response to the specific questions raised in the consultation and the next steps.
The impact assessment and equality impact assessment accompanying the consultation have been updated to take account of evidence and comments provided by respondents, as well as policy developments that occurred following the consultation period. An independent resarch report was carried out to support the Impact Assessment and is published alongside.
This paper sets out the proposals for transforming bailiff action and providing more protection against aggressive bailiffs.
The aim of the proposals is to simplify and clarify the process, improve the accountability of enforcement agents and address unnecessary or inappropriate enforcement activity.
Why We Are Consulting
Bailiff action by its very nature is intrusive. It is necessary for a bailiff to be assertive and firm if they are to be effective. There is anecdotal evidence that some bailiffs may veer towards aggression in pursuit of effectiveness. It is these elements we need to address.
This paper sets out the need to balance all of the following objectives:
Providing more protection against aggressive bailiffs whilst spelling out the need for effective enforcement.
A fair, transparent and sustainable costs regime that provides adequate remuneration.
Minimising excessive regulation on business whilst ensuring effective protection for the vulnerable.
Views are welcomed on all our proposals to transform bailiff action.
In particular, we encourage the Enforcement Agent Industry to complete the questionnaire about the possible impact of the changes on their business.