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Thread: Vary an Order - what to do if you can't pay a forthwith judgment order.

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    Amethyst's Avatar

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    Default Vary an Order - what to do if you can't pay a forthwith judgment order.

    Use form N245 to ask for a varied order.

    Fill in all the details about your income and spending. Remember to write in the amount you can afford to pay.

    You will have to pay a fee to apply for a varied order. You can find out how much you will have to pay from the ‘EX50 Civil and family court fees’ leaflet. You can find out if you can get a fee remission on leaflet EX160.

    Keep a copy and send the form and fee to the court. The court will send the form to the claimant, who will decide whether to accept your offer of payment.

    If the claimant accepts your offer, the court will make an order for the instalments you agreed to pay.

    If the claimant does not accept your offer, the court will look at the information you gave and tell you how much to pay and when.

    If you still do not think you can afford to pay, you can ask the court to 'reconsider' the order.

    Write to the court within 16 days of the postmark on the varied order. Give your reasons why you don't think you can pay the amount the court has ordered you to pay. The court will arrange a private hearing for you and the claimant to discuss, with the district judge, your payments. If judgment was not made in your local court hearing centre, the case will automatically be transferred there before the hearing is arranged.

    You will be told when to come to court. You should go to this hearing.


    If you suddenly have no income and you can't pay anything towards the judgment, you can ask the court for permission to stop payment temporarily. This is called a 'stay of judgment or execution'.

    Fill in form N244 (application form) to ask for a stay of judgment, giving your reasons. You will have to pay a fee to apply for a stay of judgment or execution.
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    Last edited by Amethyst; 4th December 2017 at 09:21:AM.
    “We may not win by protesting, but if we don’t protest we will lose. If we stand up to them, there is always a chance we will win.” Hetty Bower

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  2. #2
    Amethyst's Avatar

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    Default Re: Vary an Order - what to do if you can't pay a forthwith judgment order.

    What will happen if I do nothing?

    If you do not pay anything once you have received the judgment, or you do not keep up with the payments, the claimant can ask the court to enforce the judgment. The claimant will have to pay a fee for this and this will probably be added to the amount you owe.

    If you do nothing now, you may have to pay more later.

    The claimant can try to get the money you owe in several ways. The most common ways are:
    •a warrant of control; or
    •an attachment of earnings order.


    What is a warrant of control?

    A warrant of control gives a County Court enforcement agent the power to visit your home or business to:
    • collect the money you owe; or
    • see whether you have goods to the value of the money you owe.

    If you cannot pay, the enforcement agent will look at your belongings and decide whether you own anything which could be sold at auction to pay the debt.

    If the claimant asks for a warrant of control, you will usually be sent a letter saying that if you pay the amount of the warrant to the court within seven days, the enforcement agent will not come to your home or business. If you do not pay, the enforcement agent will come to your home or business to collect payment or take goods to sell at auction.

    If you can arrange a way to pay the warrant, the enforcement agent will not usually take any belongings straightaway but they will still have to come to your home or business.


    Paying by instalments

    If you can pay the warrant in two or three weeks, the enforcement agent may not take your goods.

    But if you need more time to pay, you may need to ask for the warrant to be suspended and for an instalment order to be made. If you already have an instalment order which you have not been able to pay, you can ask the court to reduce the amount of the instalments.

    Fill in form N245 to ask for an instalment order. The procedure for asking for an instalment order is the same as we have explained on page 1 to ask for a varied order. You will also have to pay a fee.
    “We may not win by protesting, but if we don’t protest we will lose. If we stand up to them, there is always a chance we will win.” Hetty Bower

    Any advice I provide is given without liability, if you are unsure please seek professional legal guidance.

    Find Solicitors offering fixed fees on our sister site - JustBeagle.com

  3. #3
    Amethyst's Avatar

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    Default Re: Vary an Order - what to do if you can't pay a forthwith judgment order.

    What is an attachment of earnings order (AEO)?

    An AEO is sent to your employer. It tells your employer to take money from your wages each pay day and send it to the court. The court then sends the money to the claimant. If the claimant asks for an AEO, you must:

    •pay all the money you owe straightaway; or
    •fill in a statement of means form giving information about your employment, income and spending.

    Tell the court if you are:

    •unemployed;
    •self-employed;
    •in the armed forces; or
    •a merchant seaman.

    The court cannot make an AEO against you if you are one of the above. You may need to provide proof, such as your unemployment benefit number or your service number. If you pay the amount you owe straightaway, the court will not send an order to your employer.

    You must fill in the statement of means and send it to the court immediately. If you do not, the court can send you to prison and may also contact your employer to find out how much you earn.


    A court officer will look at the information you have given on your statement and decide whether to make an AEO. The court officer will also decide how much you can afford to pay each week or each month.

    The court officer will take into account how much you need to live on and to pay regular bills. This is called the 'protected earnings rate'. If you earn more than the protected earnings rate, the court will make an AEO.

    The court will send the order to your employer saying how much to take out of your wages and when to take it. The court will send you a copy of the order. Your employer may take an extra £1 each time they take money from your wages to cover their expenses.

    If you do not want the court to send an AEO to your employer, you can use the statement of means to ask the court to suspend the order. You must still fill in the statement of means and you must say why you want the court to suspend the order. If the court agrees, the court will tell you to pay a certain amount each week, or each month, direct to the claimant. The claimant's address is on the order.

    Remember, if you do not keep up with these payments, the court will send the order to your employer.

    What if I already have other attachment of earnings orders?

    If you already have a County Court AEO, you can ask the court to 'consolidate' (join) the orders.

    A consolidated AEO means that your employer will make one payment from your wages to cover all the orders and can only take £1 per deduction towards expenses.

    You can ask for a consolidated AEO by writing to your local court. Remember to give the case numbers of all the AEOs you want consolidated and, if the orders are not in your local court, the names of the courts. You cannot include an attachment order made to collect maintenance for a partner or for children.

    You do not have to pay a fee to ask for a consolidation attachment of earnings order. But you will have to pay a fee for the court to look after the order for you. This will be added to the money you already owe. You do not have to pay the whole fee in one go.
    “We may not win by protesting, but if we don’t protest we will lose. If we stand up to them, there is always a chance we will win.” Hetty Bower

    Any advice I provide is given without liability, if you are unsure please seek professional legal guidance.

    Find Solicitors offering fixed fees on our sister site - JustBeagle.com

  4. #4
    Amethyst's Avatar

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    Default Re: Vary an Order - what to do if you can't pay a forthwith judgment order.

    What other types of enforcement can the claimant use?

    The claimant may also ask for a 'third-party debt order' or a 'charging order'.

    When the claimant applies for a third-party debt order or a charging order, the court will arrange a hearing. If you don’t want the court to make the order, you must go to the hearing to give your reasons. You may ask the court to transfer the case to your local County Court hearing centre for hearing if it is not taking place there.
    “We may not win by protesting, but if we don’t protest we will lose. If we stand up to them, there is always a chance we will win.” Hetty Bower

    Any advice I provide is given without liability, if you are unsure please seek professional legal guidance.

    Find Solicitors offering fixed fees on our sister site - JustBeagle.com

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