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HMRC internal manual

Debt Management and Banking Manual

Actions by sheriff officer on receipt of a request to execute a decree for arrestment

On receipt of an instruction to lay an ordinary arrestment/earnings arrestment, the sheriff officer will execute the decree in accordance with the provisions of the Debtors (Scotland) Act 1987 and the Ordinary Cause Rules 1993.

Ordinary arrestments

As with ordinary arrestments executed under summary warrant action, ordinary arrestments executed under ordinary cause action may be laid instantly without a further approach to the defender. A copy of the extract decree is lodged with the arrestee (DMBM680090).

Earnings arrestments

Before lodging an earnings arrestment schedule in the hands of the defender’s employer under ordinary cause proceedings the sheriff officer must first of all charge the defender to pay the sum in decree plus expenses, within 14 days.

To do this the sheriff officer will serve a document on the defender, requesting payment and warning of the diligence that will follow should default continue. The defender is liable for the costs incurred by the sheriff officer in serving this document.

If after the expiry of the 14 day period any of the debt still remains unpaid the sheriff officer will execute the decree by serving on the debtor’s employer an earnings arrestment schedule (court form 30 see DMBM671120).