Attachment of earnings farce

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  • Attachment of earnings farce

    I thought I'd share my recent experience of another aspect of the justice system.

    One of my Ts has had trouble keeping up with his rent due to what I later discovered was a gambling problem. He is in employment, so can afford to pay. I issued a S8 notice, and he eventually went to the council who told him to contact Shelter. Shelter called me to discuss the case, they were trying to help him with his problem, and he'd asked if the rent and arrears could be taken off his wages directly. He had actually asked his employers directly, but they said they couldn't do it without a court order. I agreed to go for an AofE, and so went through MCOL, got the money order, then applied to have the case transferred to local court, then applied for AofE. The T was most co-operative, stating clearly what he wanted to happen. The process took a while, but then the order finally came .. and I was gobsmacked to say the least.

    Judge made a "suspended attachment of earnings order", whereby, the T was to pay me direct, an amount of £25 every week. If the defendant didn't pay, then i was to use form N446 etc.etc. and if I objected to write to court within 16 days of the order etc.etc.

    To say I was livid was an understatement. The T had asked that £150 per week be deducted directly from his wages. But the judge had completely ignored that, and decided in his "impared" wisdom to do something completely different.

    I wrote in with my objection, and explained the T's history, an provided copies of statements, letters and discussion with Shelter etc.etc. in one of my now standard witness packs. I also got T to write a letter of objection, and sat with him whilst he did it, and posted it myself!!

    Looks like the objection from both sides did the trick. I've now received a notice with a revised order for the full attachment of earnings.

    What is the point of going through all that hassle if the Judge can disregard the information in front of him and make such outrageous orders? Some justice!!

    We are currently collecting the money via DD every Friday which is when the T gets paid. When the AofE kicks in, we'll stop the DD collection, but at least we have that option if the AofE process fails again.
    Last edited by havensRus; 10-11-2009, 11:06 AM. Reason: typo

  • #2
    I know in cases where a tenant goes into Debt Management, the DM company asks for a Financial statement from their customer, i.e. income & expenses per month, in order to work out how much is payable to creditor(s) (usually a few £'s a month over X years!), but in this case the AoE judgement seems to have been way off target given the overwhelming evidence.

    Well done on the end result!
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