Another method for implementation of order of possession is requesting possession warrant from the county court and then the landlord in Thanet will be able to apply for the order to move in high court where it can be implemented by enforcement officer of the high court (HCEO).
HCEOs in Thanet are in other terms referred to as certificate bailiffs, sheriffs or law enforcement agents.
Often, a possession order is enforced in Broadstairs, Margate, or Ramsgate in a high court under two conditions:
When the hearing of possession was in high court in Kent, as this is not common because if a landlord in Thanet makes an application for an order of possession in high court, it will be moved to county court unless there are special circumstances like complicated disputes.
An application is submitted by the Thanet landlord to the county court requesting for the transfer of a possession order to the High Court so that it can be enforced by an HCEO.
It is at the discretion of the county court judge to approve the transfer of enforcement in Ramsgate, Margate, or Broadstairs to the High Court or not.
The Thanet landlord can plead during the county court possession hearing that if the court awards judgement in his favour, it should transfer the enforcement to the High Court.
After a possession order has been served, the Thanet property owner have to make an application to the county court asking for the order to be transferred to the High Court for enforcement.
Application for transfer cannot be launched if made if there is a pending appeal by the tenant in Thanet against a possession order.
Another scenario is recovering the debt if the overdue rent is over £600, the landlord applies for the writ of control to recover money in Broadstairs, Margate, or Ramsgate.
It gives an owner a chance for seizure and sale of the things owned by the tenant in Thanet and the writ is also known as a writ of Fieri facias or writ of fi fa.
Any arrears managed by CCA (Consumer Credit Act) cannot be transferred to high court so as to be implemented attributing to the fact that CCA controlled agreements may only be implemented within the Kent county court.
The reasons that may lead to a landlord in Thanet asking for a transfer of the order to the High Court for enforcement include that:
HCEOs enforcements in Thanet are faster than enforcement by bailiffs of the county court
Loss in rental income by the Kent county court bailiffs due to delays in compliance
Prevention of more damage to the property and/or behaviour that is not social in Thanet
If there are rent arrears, HCEOs are empowered to confiscate goods in Thanet as well as enforce the possession order
Interest on the judgment debt for arrears, currently at a rate of 8 percent, will accrue from the moment the order is transferred.
The tenant can oppose the application to move enforcement in Thanet to the high court because the eviction is much faster and the costs of hiring a HCEO are higher than that of a county court bailiff in Kent.
The reasons include but not limited to:
The Thanet landlord did not provide significant evidence that shows the county court bailiffs couldn't facilitate the eviction in good time
To locate somewhere else to stay in Margate, Broadstairs, or Ramsgate until relocation, he / she need extra time
Exceptional circumstances like when a tenant has children or owes a substantial amount of debt are usually important factors which would be considered by the court in Thanet.
In case the county court in Kent allows the owner to move the order to the high court, the owner may require obtaining consent from high court before serving the possession writ except during:
Moreover, you don't need permission to issue a writ of possession if there is a breach of the possession order, including a violation of a suspended possession order by failing to pay money in Thanet as required.
When the landlord in Margate, Broadstairs, or Ramsgate ask for leave to enforce a possession order in the High Court (except in actions against trespassers and cases of mortgage repossession), the landlord must give notice of this application to 'all persons in actual possession' of the property.
The High Court, therefore, cannot give permission until every person in Thanet involved with the possession order has received the notice sufficiently.
There is no requirement to provide notice in any particular form in Kent.
The facts of the case will determine sufficient notice.
If there is just one tenant in the Thanet property, who is already aware of the case being transferred, then a simple reminder by the landlord of the guidelines from the court order and a demand that the property is to be given up is more than enough.
Failing to provide good enough notice or failing to give the full details to the Court about current appeals or applications not in favour of the process, can waver the writ of possession process, even if it's been executed in Thanet.
Some HCEOs in Kent 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.
In order to curb these kinds of misconducts, practice notes were provided by High Court Senior Master on the 21st of March 2016.
Compared to using county bailiffs, enforcing a possession order in Thanet by HCEOs is faster.
HCEO can execute a writ of possession within a few days after the expiry of the notice of the landlord's application to the High Court or when the possession writ is provided in Margate, Broadstairs, or Ramsgate.
The HCEO doesn't need to inform the tenants in Thanet about when they are going to execute the writ of possession, and the HCEOs usually drop off the writ return a day or two later.
However, the HCEO needs to give a seven days' notice to the tenant where they need to seize goods and money while recovering possession of the property in Thanet.
Only the High Court in Kent has the power to stay or set aside a writ of possession, or writ of control.
The applicants can use the Form N244 to submit an application in the High Court.
So, it is the responsibility of the tenant in Thanet to inform HCEO if the stay is set aside or issued as the High court may not inform them.
Other applications aside from this, such as setting aside the original possession order must be directed to the Kent County Court.
The High Court authorizes the HCEOs as commercial agencies in Thanet, thus, they are not on the court's payroll.
The names of authorized HCEOs in Wales and England permitted to carry out an execution of High Court writs are contained in the HCEO directory.
HCEOs are required to follow practice code.
Except stated otherwise by the court, a writ of possession cannot be enforced on Christmas Day, Good Friday, or on a Sunday in Thanet.
Starting from the 6th of April, 2014, certain laws were put in place to govern activities of HCEOs and bailiffs in Thanet during seizure of tenant possessions.
The HCEOs are restricted from:
Enter the Kent property before 6am or after 9pm unless when ordered by the court
Entering a property in Thanet with an under 16 person the only person in the property
To take or seize the basic household goods such as cooker, fridge or washing machine
Based in Thanet, working nationwide
Find Out More
If you would like to find out more about the bespoke security services we provide here at Denbigh Franks, please do not hesitate to get in touch today. We look forward to answering any questions you may have.