CIVEA’s members work to enforce civil debt on behalf of local authorities and Her Majesty’s Courts and Tribunals Service (HMCTS) including council tax, business rates, parking fines, magistrates’ court fines, employment tribunal awards, child support payments, B2B and commercial rent arrears.
This amounts to over £650 million of unpaid taxes and fines recovered each year at no cost to the public bodies themselves.
As local government finances come under continued pressure, the work that our members undertake is becoming increasingly important. For instance, £2.5 billion of council tax remains outstanding in England and Wales – that’s the equivalent to the annual staffing costs of all public libraries.
However, the public value of effective enforcement goes well beyond the collection of revenue.
Enforcement action can be an important trigger for people to seek much needed debt advice and support, and the profession has strict safeguards in place to ensure that the vulnerable are provided with the right protection.
CIVEA’s members seek to secure payment from those who won’t pay, not those who can’t pay.
CIVEA offer Corporate or Private membership to all enforcement agents and companies working throughout England and Wales.
Membership enables enforcement agents to:
By working with the Ministry of Justice alongside other government departments and agencies we ensure a fair deal for enforcement agents – whether an individual or a company.
Our members help shape new policies and share best practice for the benefit of the industry as a whole.
For instance, CIVEA was central in developing a clear and straightforward framework for our industry as part of the Tribunals, Courts and Enforcement (TCE) Act 2007 and amended through the Crime and Courts Act 2013.
Its key features include:
• A clear, three-stage enforcement process that sets minimum time periods and clear, fixed fees set out in statute by the Ministry of Justice for each stage
• An extended compliance stage before goods can be seized
• An enhanced and compulsory certification process for enforcement agents
• A simplified process for taking control of goods
We issue a mandatory ‘Code of Conduct and Good Practice Guide’ to all our members.
CIVEA’s members also participate in our independent complaints procedure to give clients the confidence they require.
At the Annual General Meeting, CIVEA’s Corporate Members elect twelve people who make up our Executive Council.
From the 12 councillors a President, Vice President and Treasurer are selected with the immediate past President staying on the council for two years.
The Executive Council also appoints the Director General who is responsible for the day to day running of CIVEA.