Complaining to the Court about a Bailiff.
If you have a very serious complaint about a bailiff (enforcement agent), then you may complain to the County Court that granted the bailiff his certificate. This would be by way of EAC2 form. Such a step should always be a last resort and almost certainly, should not be undertaken until you have first attempted to resolve your complaint with the bailiff company itself.
Before considering an EAC2 complaint, you need to be aware that the court will be required to consider whether your complaint addresses the ‘fitness’ of the bailiff (enforcement agent) to continue to hold a certificate. The relevant legislation regarding an EAC2 Complaint is Regulation 9 of the Certification of Enforcement Agents Regulations 2014 which can be read here.
What type of complaint can I make to the court?
It is important to realise that when considering an EAC2 Complaint, you will be required to demonstrate why you consider that the bailiff is a not a ‘fit and proper’ person to continue holding a bailiff certificate.
If you have a complaint concerning the level of fees that have been charged, or that goods have been taken that you consider should be exempt (or belong to a 3rd party), then you should not be using an EAC2 complaint. Instead, the court will expect you to bring a claim under Part 85 of the Civil Procedure Rules.
Could I be liable to pay costs to the bailiff if my EAC2 Complaint is rejected?
Yes, this is a real possibility. If the court considers that your complaint fails to address the ‘fitness’ of the bailiff or that your complaint is ‘spurious’ or an ‘abuse of the courts process’, then the court can indeed make an order that you pay the enforcement agents legal or other costs. The relevant legislation is provided under Rule 84.20 of the Civil Procedure Rules here.
Note from Bailiff Advice
If you are considering making an EAC2 Complaint to the court regarding the conduct of a bailiff/enforcement agent and wish to discuss in confidence whether or not this is the correct procedure, please feel free to contact us. Alternatively you can email a question to Bailiff Advice using our popular Question page