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HMRC internal manual

Debt Management and Banking Manual

Enforcement action: distraint: after the levy: monitoring auctioneer's performance

The senior debt manager, in liaison with the higher debt manager and distraint officer, is responsible for monitoring the performance of bailiffs and auctioneers that are used. This includes periodically attending auctions.

In additional to the initial check and vetting procedures put in place by your DMGO, you must continue to periodically review the auctioneer’s own performance regarding IT-PAYE/NIC-1 and VAT and submission of returns in accordance withDMBM655490

Ensure the auctioneer has adequate insurance in place to cover seized goods during transit and storage.

Any shortcomings on the part of a bailiff attending while an officer levies distraint should be discussed with them immediately they occur.

If you are dissatisfied with a bailiff’s performance or suitability the officer in charge should consult the DMGO, as other offices may use the same bailiff.

If you decide to dispense with a bailiff’s services you must explain to the bailiff why this is happening and, wherever possible, give suitable written notice.