The High Court Enforcement Officers Association [HCEOA] have published its findings, the survey results clearly showing that court users want the right to choose which enforcement provider to use, without any distinction because of the debt type.
During the summer, the HCEOA undertook an online survey of court users to see whether users wished to see a change to the High Court and County Courts Jurisdiction Order 1991.
Some of the results showed that:
- 92.17% would consider using High Court Enforcement Officers for the enforcement of Consumer Regulated Judgments.
- 89.12% see no justification for maintaining a distinction in the High Court and County Courts Jurisdiction Order between Consumer regulated and non-regulated judgments.
- 87.89% would support a change in the High Court and County Courts Jurisdiction Order to remove the prohibition not allowing High Court Enforcement Officers to enforce consumer regulated judgments.
As the resources in the courts are being squeezed through cost saving measures, we are likely to see access to justice being affected. As a business we have already experienced inordinate delays in the execution of county court warrants in the County Court bailiff system. Put simply, this is having an impact for our clients not being able to recover funds as effectively as we can in the high court.
High Court officers already collect a significant amount of un-regulated consumer debt. There is no plausible reason why they ought not to be able to collect Consumer Regulated Debt.
Only time will tell, but there are clear commercial advantages to open up the market.