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CIVEA responds to BBC drama

Immediate release:  July 2018

Civil Enforcement Association responds to BBC drama

Responding to the BBC drama Killed by my debt, which first aired on 29 May 2018, Russell Hamblin-Boone, chief executive officer of the Civil Enforcement Association (CIVEA) said:

“Debt and mental health are important issues raised in the BBC drama, which is partly based on a real-life tragedy. However, as the drama shows, it can be very difficult to discern a person’s state of mind. All enforcement agents are highly trained, closely monitored and abide by strict rules set out in law. Enforcement Agents act on behalf of the courts and must be re-certificated every two years by a judge to confirm their continuing suitability for the role. There is no evidence that the tragic case of Jerome Rogers was the result of a visit by the enforcement agent, who met all the regulations, and this was confirmed by the coroner at the inquest. We advise anyone with debt problems to look at the options for free expert advice from moneyadviceservice.org.uk<http://moneyadviceservice.org.uk>”


Notes for editors:

The Civil Enforcement Association (CIVEA) is the principal trade association representing civil enforcement agencies operating in England and Wales.

Enforcement agents (formerly known as bailiffs) are regulated by the Tribunals Courts and Enforcement Act 2007, Schedule 12 and the Taking Control of Goods Regulations 2013.

The Ministry of Justice published a One year review of Enforcement Agent reforms in March 2018 https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/695833/one-year-review-bailiff-reform-web.pdf

The first review of those reforms showed positive progress since our changes. This includes better awareness around debtor rights and how to complain, more clarity for debtors about the fees that can be charged, the processes that should be followed, and where to go for advice.

It also found the overall effectiveness of proper enforcement has improved, with a greater proportion of debts now being successfully enforced.

In light of lingering concerns over aggressive behaviour by minority of bailiffs, the Ministry will be publishing a Call for Evidence.