The other choice for enforcing a possession order by asking the county court to issue a warrant of possession is for the property owner in Lancashire to apply to transfer the order to the High Court for enforcement by a High Court Enforcement Officer (HCEO).
These HCEOs are also known as Sheriffs, certificated bailiffs or enforcement agents in Lancashire.
The High Court can impose a possession order in Preston, Burnley, or Morecambe if:
Hearing in the High Court in Lancashire is only possible if the circumstances are dire, for example, the High Court will deal with the case if the dispute is having any exceptional circumstances, otherwise, the possession order applied for by the Lancashire landlord will be transferred to the County Court.
When the Lancashire property owner makes an application to the county court to transfer the order of possession to the high court for implementation by an HCEO.
It's often the decision of the judge at the county court if the order in Morecambe, Burnley, or Preston will be allowed to get transferred to the High Court.
During the county court possession hearings, a landlord in Lancashire can request that the possession order to be moved to the high court for enforcement.
Once the order of possession is obtained by the Lancashire landlord, he can appeal before county court and request movement of order for purposes of implementation in high court.
The landlord can't make the application if there are outstanding issues such as if the tenant in Lancashire has appealed against the order.
If the tenant owes rent arrears and the sum of the arrears and the court costs are over £600, the landlord would be allowed to apply for a writ of control that allows him to control the money owed in Morecambe, Preston, or Burnley.
The writ of control provides you with the authority to sell the tenant's goods after seizing them in Lancashire, and in the past, this was commonly known as writ of fi fa or writ of fiery facias.
However, the debt cannot be transferred to the High Court if the debt or rent arrears are regulated by the Consumer Act 1974 (CCA), that is because agreements regulated by the CCA can only be enforced in the Lancashire county court.
A Lancashire landlord can request a transfer of the order to the High Court for enforcement because of the following reasons:
Enforcement in Lancashire by HCEO is usually faster than the county court bailiff enforcement
Lancashire County court bailiffs may indirectly cause a reduction in rental income since their enforcement takes a longer time
Avoiding any further damage to the assets or antisocial behaviour in Lancashire
If there are rent arrears, HCEOs are empowered to confiscate goods in Lancashire as well as enforce the possession order
The interest rate on judgement, currently at 8%, for debt arrears will start accumulating exactly from order transference.
The renter may decide to challenge the request to transfer enforcement in Lancashire to high court considering that eviction is quicker and hiring an HCEO is costly compared to the Lancashire county court bailiff.
Some reasons the tenant may give include:
The landlord in Lancashire did not prove that there will be colossal delay by using the county court bailiffs
The prices are excessive and/or disproportionate
The period of delay before eviction affords the tenant the opportunity to find another place to live in Preston, Morecambe, or Burnley
The Lancashire court's decision about the order transference is affected by a number of factors, for instance, in case there are children with tenants or presence of notable rental arrears.
If the Lancashire county court approves the landlord's order for relocation, the landlord must seek the High Court's consent before the certificate of custody is given, except in:
There may not be a need for permission if the application for writ of possession is facilitated by breach of a possession order, such as a suspended possession order or unpaid rent in Lancashire.
When a landlord in Burnley, Morecambe, or Preston seeks permission from the High Court in order to enforce the possession order then every tenant (everyone in actual possession) must be served with the notice of application.
The High Court will not award approval except each tenant in Lancashire has such notice as the Court feels is enough.
There is no specific requirement of notice to be served in a set form in Lancashire.
Dependent on the facts of the case, is what is sufficient notice.
In the case of a sole occupant in Lancashire that has had case in the High Court had acknowledged the notice, reminding them of the court order's terms and a request for possession is counted as enough notice.
If the landlord fails to provide enough notice or does not give all the details to the court about appeals against possession hearings or pending applications, the writ of possession can be set aside even after it has been executed in Lancashire.
The note came on the heels of the individualized activities of HCEOs in Lancashire, such as the inappropriate use of Form N293A against tenants and not trespassers, and the direct application to the High Court to take over the case on the premise of Section 41 of the County Court Act 1984.
So, in order to prevent such malpractices, High Court's Senior Master issued a practice note on 21 March 2016.
Compared to using county bailiffs, enforcing a possession order in Lancashire by HCEOs is faster.
The implementation of a writ of possession by an HCEO can take place in few days after the notice by the landlord to tenants expires or when the writ of possession is issued in Preston, Burnley, or Morecambe.
A HCEO does not have to give tenants any notice in advance before their visit in Lancashire to execute the writ of possession because there is no requirement for that, however, some HCEOs usually send the writ one or two days before visiting the premises.
In cases where a HCEO is claiming to seize money and goods due to costs and rent arrears and recovering possession of the premises in Lancashire, they will have to provide the tenant a 7 days' notice.
The Lancashire High court can stay or set aside a writ of control or writ of possession.
All applications to the High Court must be made on form N244.
In case the stay or set aside is obtained, it's important where applicable, that the Lancashire tenant notifies the HCEO of the situation since the high court might have not notified the HCEO.
Additional applications such as an annulment of the original order of possession must be submitted to the Lancashire county court.
HCEOs in Lancashire are commercially paid agencies given authority by the High Court and are not actual employees of the court.
If you need to check the names of enforcement officers in England and Wales, there is a Directory of High Court Enforcement Officers who have been authorized to execute High Court writs.
High Court enforcement officers practice a code of conduct.
A writ of possession must not be implemented on the Public holidays like Sunday, Good Friday or Christmas in Lancashire - only if ordered by the court.
Starting from 6 April 2014, regulations for the actions of HCEOs and all other bailiffs, when seizing goods in Lancashire came out.
Under these regulations, the HCEO is restricted from:
The HCEO mustn't enter a residential property in Lancashire before 6 am, or after 9 pm, without authorization from the court
Enter the Lancashire property if there is only a child present who is aged under 16
Take the fridge, cooker, washing machine, or some other essential household items
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