The landlord in Somerset can get enforcement by high court enforcement officer by simply applying to the county court to transfer its possession order from county court to High Court which is also an alternative to possession order implementation by the issuance of the warrant of possession from the County Court.
You can also call HCEOs, certified Bailiffs or Sheriffs, and enforcement agents in Somerset.
Often, a possession order is enforced in Yeovil, Taunton, or Bridgwater in a high court under two conditions:
High Court in Somerset has scheduled a hearing for possession order, but it is generally not observed as a landlord in Somerset's possession claim goes to the County Court except those cases which have any unusual situation like critical law points or complex factual disputes.
The landlord in Somerset makes an application to the county court to have the HCEO transfer the possession order to the high court for compliance.
It is the county court judge that will determine if to transfer the enforcement in Taunton, Yeovil, or Bridgwater to the High Court or not.
The landlord in Somerset can apply before the hearing or apply for the same during the hearing to transfer to the High Court for enforcement.
The landlord in Somerset must apply to the County Court for the transfer of the possession order to the High Court once the order is obtained.
The application for transfer cannot be made if the Somerset tenant had made the appeal against the application of a landlord and they have strong points.
If the total costs including the unpaid rent along with court expenses are over £600, the owner of the property can appeal for warrant of control for recovering the owed money in Taunton, Bridgwater, or Yeovil.
A writ of control allows the landlord in Somerset to seize and sell the tenants goods which is also known as a writ of Fieri facias or writ of fi fa.
If the Consumer Credit Act 1974 (CCA) regulated the debt, it could not be transferred to the High Court, as CCA regulated agreements can only be enforced in the county court in Somerset.
There are certain reasons why a landlord in Somerset can apply for a transfer of the order to the High Court for enforcement including:
Implementation in Somerset by HCEOs is usually faster than by county court bailiffs
Loss of rental income because delays in enforcement through the county court bailiffs in Somerset
To avoid continued destruction of the property in Somerset as well as antisocial behaviour
If there are rent arrears, HCEOs are empowered to confiscate goods in Somerset as well as enforce the possession order
An interest rate of 8% will be accrued for judgement debt arrears from the start of the order transfer.
The costs of using an HCEO for eviction in Somerset are higher than the Somerset county court bailiffs because the speed of eviction is quicker, however, a tenant may wish to oppose an application to transfer enforcement to the High Court.
The reasons for the tenant might include:
The Somerset landlord did not provide significant evidence that shows the county court bailiffs couldn't facilitate the eviction in good time
The costs involved are too high
The tenant needs enough time to find alternative accommodation in Bridgwater, Taunton, or Yeovil
The tenant needs to highlight the relevant factors the court in Somerset can take into consideration such as having significant arrears or having kids.
In case the landlord's application to transfer is accepted, by the Somerset county court, then the landlord needs to get high Court's consent before the assurance of the writ of possession unless if:
Furthermore, the permission required before serving warrant of possession is not necessary when there is a violation of order of possession including suspension orders in which violation includes non payment of money in Somerset.
Once the permission to enforce an order of possession is sought in the high court, the landlord in Yeovil, Taunton, or Bridgwater will have to give notice of that application to every party in actual possession of the premises.
The High Court must not grant permission until each tenant in Somerset is given such notice as the Court considers sufficient.
In Somerset, it is not required to give the notice in a specific form.
However, it should be according to the facts of the case.
If it is a sole tenant in Somerset who already knows that the case was in the high court, the Landlord can send them a reminder showing the terms of the court order and appeal that the tenant gives up possession of the rental property, is sufficient notice.
If satisfactory notice is not provided by the landlord or he provides the court with insufficient information about the pending appeals or applications against hearings of possession, then the warrant of possession will get invalid even after execution in Somerset.
Some HCEOs in Somerset try to take over the matter under section 41 of the County Court Act 1984 by applying directly to the High Court or by inappropriately using Form N293A (i.e., against tenants instead of trespassers) to circumvent the correct procedure.
The Senior Master of the High Court (Queens Bench Division) gave out a practice not on the 21st March 2016 to stop the carelessness.
HCEOs ensure faster enforcement of a possession order in Somerset than bailiffs in a County Court.
Execution of the possession order is possible only in a few days of the expiration of the notice given by the landlord when executed by the high court or after then possession writ is issued in Yeovil, Taunton, or Bridgwater.
In most cases, they do not inform the tenants of their visit in Somerset and in some other cases, they may drop off the writ of possession and come back after about two days to implement it.
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 Somerset, they will have to provide the tenant a 7 days' notice.
It is possible to obtain stay or invalidation of warrant of possession or control through the high courts in Somerset.
You will need to complete form N244 during your application to high court.
In case the stay or set aside is granted, then it is important that, if possible, the tenant in Somerset will inform the HCEO of this fact as the High Court may not have informed the HCEO.
Additional applications such as an annulment of the original order of possession must be submitted to the Somerset county court.
High Court enforcement officers (HCEOs) in Somerset are commercial agencies which are not employees of High court however they are authorized by the high court.
You can look at the Directory of High Court Enforcement Officers to see who is authorised to proceed with High Court writs in England and Wales.
High Court Enforcement Officers (HCEOs) are bound by some codes of practice.
A writ of possession must not be implemented on the Public holidays like Sunday, Good Friday or Christmas in Somerset - only if ordered by the court.
As of April 6th, 2014, regulation restrict the proceedings of HCEOs and bailiffs when they are taking goods in Somerset.
The regulations stipulate that:
Go inside the Somerset residential premises earlier than 6 am or past 9 pm unless the court orders that
Enter if the only person present in the house in Somerset is a child under the age of 16
Take vital household goods like a cooker, fridge or washing machine
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