Equite bailiff [Merged]

edited 12 January at 11:03AM in Debt-free wannabe
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Sunny662Sunny662 Forumite
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edited 12 January at 11:03AM in Debt-free wannabe
Good afternoon ,
I wonder if someone could offer any advice please? 
We have a debt with Equita of £1200 for council tax (my partner was laid off and they said we couldn't get any help with c tax).
Anyway I made an offer of £50 per month as we have other debts outstanding to Dwp too (partner was overpaid benefit 3 years ago).

I sent the offer by email and the auto reply said it could take over 30 days to be read ,so I also sent a letter .This was in November 2022.

With the postal strikes I wasn't too concerned that I hadn't heard anything back from Equita by by middle of Dec & then I got this awful bug everyone's had and was Ill from week before Xmas to a couple of days ago.
In hindsight I should have chased this up I realise that,but it totally went out of my mind .
Fast forward to January 6th ,I was in bed after a nightshift and my partner answered the door to a man who had come on behalf of Equita .He left a warning of removal and said he needed ringing once I'd got up to sort it.
I rang him back and he was so unpleasant ,said the £50 had been accepted,but I'd failed to pay it .
I've received no contact from Equita at all before he turned up and explained this,he said "Not my issue ,get on to your postman".
I offered to make the payment of £50 and he said on a debt of £1400 I don't think so ,I need it all".  Obviously I don't have that amount of money ,he wouldn't listen to me and said he'd be back and wanted goods/money .
I've complained to Equita as I have had no letters/calls as he claimed to say I had missed the payment etc.He did say you've been sent a letter ,oh you won't have got it yet .

Today I get a letter dated 5.1.23 saying because I've missed the payment agreed,they want the full amount or a bailiff will visit me,which he did the day after the date on the letter.
Sorry for the long post ,can anyone please offer me any advice on what to do now ?.
I can pay more ,but not untill I get paid 27th January.
Thanks in advance for any help.
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  • BrieBrie Forumite
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    I would send them an email submitting a subject access request so that they have to give you all of the information they hold for you.  Remind them that you have not yet had a reply to your letter in November.  Remind them that you had already made an offer to repay and they have not replied to that or agreed to it.  Tell them to ensure no bailiffs come to your house while you are sorting this out as that would be considered harassment.

    At least that's my take on it all.
    "Never retract, never explain, never apologise; get things done and let them howl.”

    2023 £1 a day  £54.26/365
  • fatbellyfatbelly Forumite
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    These debt queries are better on the debt-free wannabe board.

    Having visited, the bailiff has added both fees £75 and £235. He may now send it back to the council, and it's them you need to be talking to.

    If they do turn up, you just keep your doors locked and do not engage with them They are not allowed to force entry. Other threats (locksmith, jail)  will just be the usual rubbish you get from bailiffs
  • Sunny662Sunny662 Forumite
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    Thanks so much for your help 
    I'll make sure we keep everything locked,we've moved my partners car from outside just in case.
    My partner has multiple sclerosis so can't get about much without it .
    I just find it strange no letters have arrived bar the one that came today .
  • Sunny662Sunny662 Forumite
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    Hi I put this in another part & was advised to post it in here .

    Good afternoon ,
    I wonder if someone could offer any advice please? 
    We have a debt with Equita of £1200 for council tax (my partner was laid off and they said we couldn't get any help with c tax).
    Anyway I made an offer of £50 per month as we have other debts outstanding to Dwp too (partner was overpaid benefit 3 years ago).

    I sent the offer by email and the auto reply said it could take over 30 days to be read ,so I also sent a letter .This was in November 2022.

    With the postal strikes I wasn't too concerned that I hadn't heard anything back from Equita by by middle of Dec & then I got this awful bug everyone's had and was Ill from week before Xmas to a couple of days ago.
    In hindsight I should have chased this up I realise that,but it totally went out of my mind .
    Fast forward to January 6th ,I was in bed after a nightshift and my partner answered the door to a man who had come on behalf of Equita .He left a warning of removal and said he needed ringing once I'd got up to sort it.
    I rang him back and he was so unpleasant ,said the £50 had been accepted,but I'd failed to pay it .
    I've received no contact from Equita at all before he turned up and explained this,he said "Not my issue ,get on to your postman".
    I offered to make the payment of £50 and he said on a debt of £1400 I don't think so ,I need it all".  Obviously I don't have that amount of money ,he wouldn't listen to me and said he'd be back and wanted goods/money .
    I've complained to Equita as I have had no letters/calls as he claimed to say I had missed the payment etc.He did say you've been sent a letter ,oh you won't have got it yet .

    Today I get a letter dated 5.1.23 saying because I've missed the payment agreed,they want the full amount or a bailiff will visit me,which he did the day after the date on the letter.
    Sorry for the long post ,can anyone please offer me any advice on what to do now ?.
    I can pay more ,but not untill I get paid 27th January.
    Thanks in advance for any help.
  • RASRAS Forumite
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    Did the bailiff enter the house and list items?


    The person who has not made a mistake, has made nothing
  • Sunny662Sunny662 Forumite
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    RAS said:
    Did the bailiff enter the house and list items?


    No ,my partner spoke to him at the door only.
  • edited 10 January at 9:00PM
    sourcratessourcrates Forumite
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    edited 10 January at 9:00PM
    Keep the bailiff outside, do not allow them entry under any circumstances.

    Bailiffs cannot force entry to private property for a council tax debt.

    They will always want full payment, standard bailiff blah blah, some can be dreadful to deal with, best advice is to have as little contact with them as possible, pay as much of the debt as you can on a monthly basis, and try not to take any notice of anything they may say.

    Make the payment regardless, and then keep paying until the debt is repaid, make it your priority to pay this, the sooner its paid, the sooner they are out of your life.

    The one thing you must not do is allow them entry, keep doors locked.
    Ex MSE Board Guide.

    More than a third of IVA`s fail....fact.
    Could A Debt Relief Order help you ?
    Never pay a fee for a Debt Management Plan.
    For free non-judgemental debt advice, contact either : Stepchange, National Debtline, or CitizensAdviceBureaux.
  • Sunny662Sunny662 Forumite
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    Keep the bailiff outside, do not allow them entry under any circumstances.

    Bailiffs cannot force entry to private property for a council tax debt.

    They will always want full payment, standard bailiff blah blah, some can be dreadful to deal with, best advice is to have as little contact with them as possible, pay as much of the debt as you can on a monthly basis, and try not to take any notice of anything they may say.

    Make the payment regardless, and then keep paying until the debt is repaid, make it your priority to pay this, the sooner its paid, the sooner they are out of your life.

    The one thing you must not do is allow them entry, keep doors locked.
    Thank you for that ,will do.
  • RASRAS Forumite
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    So glad they did not get in.

    Pay as much off this debt as you can, even if it means you pay nothing off your credit cards and debit cards.

    You need to clear this as soon as you can and also make sure you stay on line to clear this year's Council Tax. Do you pay over 10 months or 12?
    The person who has not made a mistake, has made nothing
  • soolinsoolin Forumite, Ambassador
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    I’ll ask the team to move this for you. 
    ’m a Forum Ambassador and I support the Forum Team on the eBay, Auctions, Car Boot & Jumble Sales, Boost Your Income, Praise, Vents & Warnings, Overseas Holidays & Travel Planning , UK Holidays, Days Out & Entertainments boards. If you need any help on these boards, do let me know.. Please note that Ambassadors are not moderators. Any posts you spot in breach of the Forum Rules should be reported via the report button, or by emailing [email protected]
    All views are my own and not the official line of MoneySavingExpert.
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