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HMRC internal manual

Debt Management and Banking Manual

Enforcement action: county court proceedings: warrants of execution: payment, or offer of payment, following issue of warrant of execution

Payment made to claimant

If the judgment debtor offers you payment after you have issued a warrant of execution

  • refuse it
  • tell the judgment debtor to pay the bailiff or the court.

If payment is received,

  • notify the court by telephone immediately
  • ask whether the court requires transfer of the money (for example, to meet the bailiff’s costs) and if so
  • transfer the money as appropriate or bring the money to account in the usual way (always satisfy the enforcement court fees first).

When you receive payment, bring it to account in the normal way (always satisfy the enforcement court fees first).

Payment made to court bailiff

Where the judgment debtor pays the amount shown on the warrant, the court will send you the money.

Payment made by cheque

Where the judgment debtor pays by cheque, the court will retain the payment for 14 days for clearance before sending you payment.

Payment following sale

When the court bailiff has to take the goods away for sale you will be sent the net proceeds of the sale.

However, where your warrant is for more than £500, the court will notify you on form N330 to say that it will keep any payment for 14 days in case a bankruptcy or winding-up petition is presented.

If the court receives notice of a bankruptcy or winding-up petition within the 14 day retention period, it will pay the net proceeds of sale to the trustee or liquidator as appropriate.

Net proceeds insufficient to satisfy court fee

If the proceeds of the sale are not enough to satisfy the court fee paid on application for the warrant of execution, treat that fee as irrecoverable. The judgment debtor is not personally liable for the fee (for the warrant) therefore you cannot include it in a judgment summons or a new order for payment.

The warrant of execution remains live for 12 months and can be reissued if you discover other goods against which it will be effective.