Bailiffs are law enforcement officers who are trained to visit people’s homes to collect debts they owe to their clients. They are legally authorised to work on the behalf of the courts for recovering outstanding debt, repossess goods or even carry out the eviction of a tenant.
The career of a bailiff does involve some ground rules for they are under the obligation of laws so they must know where to draw the line. There are agencies that work in the favour of debtors who could reach out to them for bailiff help. So it is important to understand what impression you are attaching yourself to before stepping into it.
About the job of a bailiff and what is involved
There are mainly two types of bailiff
High court enforcement officers
High court enforcement officers are civil servants that are employed as court service bailiffs. They are hired by the court officials, their job is to deliver the writ to houses and businesses and enforce court judgments. This requires their concern with aspects of civil law regarding property matters, debt recovery and consumer dispute.
Private or certified bailiffs
Private bailiffs or certified bailiffs work for independent companies or individuals. These private or certified bailiffs have the job of enforcing the recovery of rent, parking fines and council tax. Private bailiffs work for various clients like solicitors, loan companies, banks, utility companies, local authorities and finance companies.
What do a bailiff’s day-to-day duties include?
Before getting into a full-time career you must understand what duties a bailiff manages in their day-to-day life. The duties include the following
- Bailiffs write letters to debtors requesting payment.
- They work with debtors and assist them as well in making payment plans.
- It is also their job to formally deliver court paper to debtors.
- They have to collect money and estimate the value of goods owned by the debtor.
- They have to carry out the repossession of goods where the owner may have failed to keep up repayments.
- Arranging goods that are to be sold off at auction.
- They evict occupants, change locks and board up properties.
- They record the details of the taken money or seized items.
- Take responsibility for the received
Bailiffs have to stick to the strict guidelines of what they can and can not do.
Bailiffs work from 37 to 40 hours a week, they are required to be flexible with the hours they do their job which will allow them to make direct contact with people present at home. Early mornings and late evenings are usually the common work time for these officers. There opportunities available for part-time work as well.
The jobs of bailiffs are generally office based but they spend a huge amount of their time travelling and visiting debtors. Their work may sometimes involve lifting and removing goods for that they need to be fit enough and their attires are usually a smart business formal dress.
Pay structures for bailiffs vary widely depending on their abilities and the firms that hire them.
Getting started with this career choice
There are job opportunities widely available as a bailiff in cities like England and Wales and large towns of the UK. The position for bailiffs is a stable one, opportunities are there to work on a self-employed basis as well. However, it is required to write directly to firms expressing personal interest to get a trainee post with a firm of sheriff officers in Scotland. The vacancies for bailiffs can be easily found in national and local papers and on the gov websites for court services.
Education and Training
There is no such qualification requirement for the job of a bailiff, employers just look for some basic numeracy and good communication skills in their employee. Additionally, they may expect a minimum of five GCSE’s A*-C, including English and maths. The procedures of applying for a candidate in court services has a normal civil service recruitment process.
Since bailiff’s jobs involve law, the applicants are required to show that they do not have a debt or criminal record themselves. They are also required a CCJ (Country Court Judgment) check.
What more exams you might need
Training is largely on the job and further varies distinctively depending on the employers. However, it is common to come across opportunities to attend short courses on some aspects of the work like conflict resolution for progressing in the role. As bailiffs are hired, employers may encourage them to progress more and train enough to attain the Bailiff’s General Certificate for their efficiency.