What is a High Court Enforcement Officer?
A High Court Enforcement Officer has been authorised by the Ministry of Justice. As officers of the High Court duty bound to enforce High Court judgments in England and Wales. They have greater powers than officers of other courts to enforce High Court Writs. The most popular being the “Writ of Control”. This is a writ issued for the recovery of money owed to the claimant by the defendant/debtor.
The High Court Enforcement Officer has a duty to the High Court to enforce the judgment by contacting the debtor to secure full payment or arrange an agreed payment plan. The Writ of Control also authorises the Enforcement Agent to list and take control of their assets on behalf of the court. The goods are left in situ until the debt is paid. In the rare event that no agreement of payment or a payment plan is being followed, the High Court Enforcement Officer can have the listed goods removed and sold at a later date at auction. It is therefore always advisable to immediately contact the High Court Enforcement company stated on the notice, to avoid the costs and action escalating.
Types of Writ Executed by a High Court Enforcement Officer
The most commonly applied for High Court judgment is a Writ of Control. This is to recover money owed to a claimant. Other writs a High Court Enforcement Officer can enforce include:
- a Writ of Possession to evict a tenant and secure the property on behalf of a landlord
- a successful Employment Tribunal Award or ACAS Settlement for an existing or former employee but has not been paid by the employer.
History- From Sheriffs Officers to High Court Enforcement Officer
Up to 2004, High Court Enforcement Officers (HCEOs) were identified as High Court Sheriffs (Sheriffs Officers). On 1st April 2004, the 2003 Court Act came into force This change allowed High Court Enforcement Officers (HCEOs). The Act removed the geographical boundaries for High Court Enforcement Officers and enables them to conduct enforcement throughout the whole of England and Wales.