Debt collectora and an upset coupleThere is nothing more stressful than people not paying what they owe you. So what can you do about it? You can either hire a debt collector or a bailiff. However, you must understand that debt collectors do not have the same legal powers as bailiffs do.

What is a Bailiff?

There are two kinds of bailiffs: court and private bailiffs. Some private bailiffs are self-employed while others work for private companies who offer rent recovery services. Officially, the new name for bailiffs is enforcement agents, but many still refer to them as bailiffs. They have the legal power to visit homes to collect certain debts by asking for payments or by taking and selling the belongings of a debtor. However, they may only do so with court orders or warrants.

What’s the Difference between a Bailiff and a Debt Collector?

Debt collectors. They can contact people who owe money through phone calls and letters, but they do not have any legal power to collect debts as bailiffs do. In some cases, debt collectors may also visit the debtors’ homes, but people are not required to let them in or even open the doors for them. They also can’t take anything from a debtor’s property as a means of payment for their debt.

Bailiffs. They have more legal powers than debt collectors in collecting debts. Bailiffs may take a debtor’s possessions to sell and repay the creditors. However, they must send a notice that they are coming at least seven days in advance. They can’t force themselves into any home unless they are collecting a criminal fine, although bailiffs only turn to this as a last resort.

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Final Thoughts

Certified bailiffs receive special authorisation from the country court to collect debts. When hiring a bailiff that is self-employed or works for a private company, you should double check their credentials. Remember that it is illegal for debt collectors to introduce themselves as bailiffs.