Getting behind with the council tax seems to be quite common among the lower paid and once it goes to court the court fees and then the bailiff fees can make the tax seem extortionate, it is! But many people ask us can a bailiff break into a home to grab property to cover the debt?
No, bailiffs cannot break into a property if you owe council tax.
However if you have previously spoken to bailiffs for the council tax bill and have let them in to your home then yes they can now break in on subsequent visits to secure and or take your property.
At the FIRST VISIT You should never allow bailiffs into your property FULL STOP!
Bailiffs will knock at your door and give you false information as to what they can do, they are powerless to enforce any warrant from the council unless you accept them into your home. NEVER pay a bailiff, they will only deduct the money from their charges FIRST and not from your council tax bill!
There are reports online that after 3 attempts to collect money they will pass the court summons back to the council, however the council will probably go for an attachment of earnings order.....
Government advice on what a bailiff can do: https://www.gov.uk/your-rights-bailiffs/what-you-can-do-when-a-bailiff-visits
Dealing with bailiffs
You usually don’t have to open your door to a bailiff or let them in. Bailiffs can’t enter your home:
- by force, eg push past you
- if only children under 16 or vulnerable people (eg, disabled) are present
- between 9pm and 6am
- through anything except the door
Bailiffs are allowed to force their way into your home to collect unpaid criminal fines, Income Tax or Stamp Duty, but only as a last resort.
If you don’t let a bailiff in or agree to pay them:
- they could take things from outside your home, eg your car
- you could end up owing even more money
If you do let a bailiff in but don’t pay them they may take some of your belongings. They could sell the items to pay debts and cover their fees.
Help or advice
You can get free help or advice on dealing with bailiffs from:
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