An IVA can be used to stop action from a bailiff. However whether it is the right solution for you will depend on a number of factors.
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When is a Bailiff Used?
A bailiff is most commonly used to collect outstanding council tax, court fines, utility arrears and HMRC debt. A commercial bank or lender is unlikely to use this collection option.
These types of creditors will normally only resort to using a bailiff after all other attempts to collect an outstanding debt have been exhausted. If they do an application has to be made at the Court for a warrant of execution.
Once the warrant is issued a bailiff can then visit your home and has the power to arrest goods. In other words take things that you own and sell them to pay the debt you owe.
Do not ignore a payment demand from a bailiff. Ultimately they do have the power to seize your goods up to the value of the debt that you owe.
Is an IVA the Right Solution for you?
All court actions including the use of a bailiff must be stopped after an IVA has been put in place. However whether it is the right solution to deal with your problem depends on a number of things.
Most debts can be included in an IVA including utility and council tax arrears. However court fines cannot. If the bailiff is collecting an outstanding court fine you owe an IVA cannot help.
You also need to consider how much debt you have in total. An IVA is normally only suitable if you owe at least £8000. You will also be obliged to maintain a monthly payment of at least £100 for 5 years.
If the amount a bailiff is chasing for is only a few hundred pounds an IVA is unlikely to be right for you unless you have other debts.
What can you do while your IVA is being implemented?
It is important to understand that an IVA cannot be implemented overnight. The solution will take 4-6 weeks to set up.
You will therefore need to speak to the bailiff. Explain that you are in the process of proposing an IVA and ask them to put your account on hold for a month to allow time for this to happen.
If they refuse to stop their action it might be possible to apply for temporary protection from the Court in the form of an Interim Order. However this costs £160 which you would have to pay.
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