Bailiffs: Complaint Against a Council to the LGO

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IMPORTANT...If you need to make a Complaint to the Local Authority then read here.....

(With thanks to Tomtubby)

It must be remembered that a bailiff enforcing a debt for council tax, National Non Domestic Rates (NNDR) or an unpaid parking ticket is working as a agent for the local authority.

In this, the local authority cannot simply abdicate responsibility for the actions of their contractor as ultimately, it is the responsibility of the local authority to ensure that a levy is carried out in a lawful manner and that the fees charged by their agents are in accordance with statutory regulations.

Following a discussion with the Local Government Ombudsman's Office (LGO) they have advised that if you have a Compliant for the Council about their bailiff's then you MUST do the following:


You must ENSURE that you mark your letter to the local authority: FORMAL COMPLAINT.

Your letter should be addressed to the CHIEF EXECUTIVE and should be COPIED to the COMPLAINTS DEPARTMENT ( this will ensure that it is registered as a formal complaint).

If you are unsatisfied with your response from the local authority then you can take your complaint to the Local Government Ombudsman but they will want to see that you have gone through the councils COMPLAINTS PROCEDURE first and that you have allowed the local authority a maximum period of 12 weeks to respond.

The Local Government Ombudsman's office will need to satisy themselves that you have made it CLEAR to the Local Authority that you are making a FORMAL COMPLAINT.

Find the addresses of your local goverment ombudsman here

Amend as required (With thanks to 10010001)


The Local Government Ombudsman

Address 1

Address 1

Address 1



Dear Sir/Madam

Re: Comlaint of misfeasance against [NAME OF] Council

I am making this complaint because [NAME OF] Council instructed a firm of bailiffs [NAME OF BAILIFFS] who visited me on [DATE] for collecting [an unpaid parking ticket/unpaid council tax/unpaid business rates/unpaid rent/other] of £[AMOUNT] but the bailiff charged me £[AMOUNT], however on closer inspection of the law that prescribed fees for cerrtificated bailiffs indicated I should only have been charged £[AMOUNT] and I have been defrauded of £[AMOUNT]. I have asked the Council to put things right but they failed to do so and I understand that case law has ruled an authority is liable for the actions of its bailifffs.

I have had an opportunity to seek advice and I now understand the law that sets prescribed fees for bailiffs is [COPY NAME OF LAW FROM LIST BELOW] and the bailiff is committing an offence under Sections 1 to 5 of the Fraud Act 2006 by defrauding me by making a false representation and misuse of his position to make an unlawful gain or money transfer for himself or another.

I appreciate the public are generally less-informed of the fee entitlements of bailiffs and Councils that instruct them, but given the nature of this complaint and that money was aquired from me under false pretenses afforded by the council have since fobbed me off with excuses, I ask this matter is put right by the Council and I am awarded a reaonable monetary compensation to offset for my time and resources in seeking Discovery of Information relating to this incident.

Yours Faithfully


CC The Council.

List of relevant legislation

If this letter is about:

Council Tax Arrears, insert - Regulation 45(2) of the Council Tax (Administration and Enforcement) Regulations 1992

County Court Judgement, insert - the County Court Fees Order 1982 Amended 1994

A Parking Ticket, insert - Schedule 1 of the Enforcement of Road Traffic Debts (Certificated Bailiffs)(amended 2003) Regulations 1993

Business Rates - Regulation 3(c) of the Non-Domestic Rating (Collection and Enforcement) (Amendment and Miscellaneous Provision) Regulations 1993

Rent Arrears - Appendix 1 of the Distress for Rent Rules 1988

If the bailiff is a High Court Enforcement Officer (HCEO), insert - The High Court Enforcement Officers Regulations 2004 Debt not listed here then leave blank.