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Attachment of Earnings Successful

You might recall that some time back, I told you about my experience of a claim for attachment of earnings. You can read about it here.

Following the successful appeal, the Judge ruled properly, and the attachment was successfully implemented. It took a few weeks to get the attachemnt put in place. Thankfully, I didn’t have to do anything at this stage. A section of the Her Majesty’s Court Service bureacracy called the Centralised Attachment of Earnings Payments System (CAPS)  kicked into play. Presumably, the officials at this office contacted my tenant’s employers, and got the necessary instruments put in place to deduct the agreed amount from the tenant’s weekly wages.

The HM Paymaster General duly collected the deductions and sent me a weekly cheque for the agreed amount. I don’t know why they couldn’t just do it by BACS, as it would have been less bureacratic and the money would have reached me quicker. But then the wheels of officialdom are not designed to be efficient, are they? It would completely dispel the myth of  justice-has-to-be-seen-to-take-a-long-time thingy that is going on. Getting the first cheque was a milestone. Very Satisfying. I remember scanning the payment notice and cheque, just for my records. I then traipsed 11 miles to the nearest bank (I live in a rural area, so no local banks…) and paid it in.

I must say, once the system kicks in and settles down, it does work. Regular weekly cheques kept coming in. Sometimes, the amounts collected were less than the agreed sum, and I still can’t work out why that happened. I didn’t think I would get a coherent answer even if I called – particularly as calling the courts and hoping to get a good answer can be a very very time consuming process. I knew the money would all come through, so didn’t mind too much.  At once point, the cheques stopped for a couple of weeks, and fearful he’d lost his job, I duly chased up the tenant to find out what was going on. He was off-sick and his pay had reduced etc.etc. But he was soon back at work, and the cheques starting coming again.

The cheques have now stopped coming, but only because all the monies owed and claimed under that order have now been paid off. So well done, Her Majesty’s Court Service Centralised Attachment of Earnings Payments or HMCS CAPS for short. Thank you indeed for coming through for me. You’ve notched up my faith in the Court system by a millimeter (every littl’ ‘elps).

I have now continued the practice of a weekly deduction from my tenant’s account, seamlessly. Once we worked out when the last cheque would come and for how much, we duly got the tenant to sign a new Direct Debit mandate which we then put in place and which kicked in just nicely at the right time. As he is now used to having money deducted from him weekly, it was absolutely essential that we carried on the practice outside the court system, without a break. That will help him manage his finances better and give him less opportunity to fall into rent arrears.

Going forward, he is now paying his rent weekly, and all things being equal, he will continue to be cooperative. One more mess up, and he knows he’s out. There’s only so far a landlord can assist a tenant to be responsible. After all, we are running a business, and not a charity.

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