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Bailiffs and absent son

(13 Posts)
Finsbury Fri 29-Apr-16 13:52:04

Can anyone advise please?
Son (24) does not live with me but still using this address. He has unpaid fines - a speeding offence and an unpaid train ticket. Yesterday bailiffs came round and my younger son (21) let them in the house - they made an inventory of items they might take. They came back this morning - I spoke to them from an upstairs window, said son did not live here, none of his possessions were here, but they said they would be back with a locksmith to gain entry and I would have to prove I owned the items or they could take them away. In the meantime son has contacted them and things seem to be sorted out. But my worry is this may happen again - what can I do - I have to prove I own my own possessions? Thanks anyone!

notagiraffe Sat 30-Apr-16 09:58:21

Tell your other son never to let them in. They have to be invited. If the home is in your name as mortgage/rent/utilities payer, they cannot legitimately assume anything belongs to him. And tell him to sort out his debts!

Cindy34 Sat 30-Apr-16 10:04:26

Watch The Sheriffs Are Coming on iPlayer, so you get to know more about what High Court Bailiffs can do. Stop your son from using your address, does he have his own place? Talk to him about money management and how you never want to see bailiffs at your door again. He needs to accept responsibility (sounds like he has if he has now contacted the bailiffs) and with luck it won't happen again. If he gets in financial trouble in future, be there for moral support and financial support if you can afford to loan him the money.

firesidechat Sat 30-Apr-16 15:51:10

The people in that programme have far more powers than your average bailiff Cindy The op would need to know what type she is dealing with and take it from there. Either way they can't take stuff if it belongs to the op and not the son with the debts.

murphyslaws Sat 30-Apr-16 15:57:55

They can't get a lock smith. It would be breaking and entry. They have to have police with them.

They can't take something if it's yours and not your sons.

firesidechat Sat 30-Apr-16 18:22:55

Court appointed bailiffs have considerably more powers and if they have a warrant they can use reasonable force to enter premises. It depends on who the bailiffs are and what they are collecting.

Finsbury Mon 02-May-16 13:39:32

Thanks everyone. A horrible situation to be in. I suppose they were court appointed bailiffs as it's an unpaid fine. I was quite shocked when they said to me that I'd have to prove I owned items in my own house, though it didn't get to that stage in the end.

nearlyhadenough Mon 02-May-16 18:03:11

I have had exactly the same situation with my son. His was a fine from the courts.

In my case the bailiff was allowed to get a locksmith and enter the property because the fine was from the courts. He had the power to remove any items that I could not prove ownership of - I had no way of proving ownership of my mum's engagement ring or my ancient laptop.

I would have had 3 days to provide proof (after removal).

I had no choice but to pay. There was a locksmith waiting.

I can find no way of stopping it reoccurring.

Finsbury Tue 03-May-16 10:00:15

nearlyhadenough it's an awful situation isn't it. And I've no faith it won't happen again. I have an expensive coffee machine - had it years so no receipts - but I do have an email where I tell a friend how I got it as a present - I wonder if the email would count as proof?

BoomFromHarry Tue 03-May-16 10:05:01

Send deeds and utility bills to court and give then your son's address. He has zero respect for you, to use your address.

ShotgunNotDoingThePans Tue 03-May-16 10:11:07

Some info on bailiffs' rights to enter here.
If it's an unpaid debt that hasn't had a county court judgement made on it, or an outstanding debt to HMRC, or an unpaid magistrate's fine, they cannot forcefully enter your home.

ShotgunNotDoingThePans Tue 03-May-16 10:12:20

Oops that came out all wrong - if it isn't one of the above they cannot enter your home blush.

Shinyshoes2 Tue 03-May-16 10:26:34

I could have written the OP . except my son does live here still but pretty much stays round his girlfriends full time ( he's not living there he tells me ) .
My DP is willing " out of principle " to let the baliffs take stuff as we are "not bailing him out again. "
The date it needs to be paid is the 11th, there is a distress warrant issued ( bailiffs ) .
I'm clearing out iPads , jewellery and anything I can shove in a carrier bag and storing it away from the house .
His " principle " is going to cost us a fucking fortune .
We have the money to pay it but he says no
My DS buries his fucking head in the sand .

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