Before you even consider paying Equita Bailiffs Debt Collectors, you must be absolutely certain that the debt belongs to you. And if it turns out it does? There’s a crucial 7-day window after receiving a Notice of Enforcement that you mustn’t overlook.
So, what’s the next step with Equita? Well, let’s dive deep into it.
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Read our article for guidance on what steps you can take to be debt-free and how you should deal with Equita Bailiffs debt collectors. This year, complaints to the Financial Ombudsman Service (FOS) have risen from 830 to 2006. So, worry not; many people are experiencing similar issues, and you’re not alone.
What You Need to Know About Equita Bailiffs Debt Collectors?
With roots firmly established in Northampton, Equita Bailiffs represent numerous local authorities and private companies, aiming to retrieve outstanding debts. Equita has rapidly become one of the foremost debt recovery agencies in the UK. They also have over 1000 employees with offices that operate nationwide.
The company specialises in a variety of debt management services, such as:
- Local taxation
- Civil parking enforcement
- Debt advice
What is the Reason for the Contact by Equita Bailiffs Debt Collectors?
If you were contacted by Equita, their primary intention is to engage with those who have unpaid dues, be it council tax, utility bills, or other debts. They aim to recover debt on behalf of companies that you owe money to. So even if you don’t owe them directly, they have the right to contact you in order to collect debt.
Letters or calls from Equita’s contact number, 01604 628360, are typical means employed by them to establish contact. Even though contact with these debt collectors is stressful, it’s important that you respond to them and sort out the debt.
What’s the First Thing to Do If I Get an Equita Debt Letter?
Before making any decisions or taking any actions, it’s pivotal to confirm that the letter and the claim are legitimate. Double-check the details in the letter with your own and confirm if you actually owe the money.
If you don’t believe you owe the debt, request for evidence through a Prove the Debt letter. In order to prove that you owe the debt, the debt collectors should send you evidence, such as the original credit agreement.
They should also provide a breakdown of the amount that you owe. In this case, the value might be higher than the original amount due to added interest and other costs due to late payments. Note that if Equita Ltd does not prove the debt, you’re not obligated to pay them.
If they take you to court after failing to show you proof, provide proof to the judge of the prove the debt letter you sent them. The judge will then ask the debt collection agency to provide you proof; if they refuse, the case will be dismissed.
What if I’ve Had Evidence That the Equita Debt is Mine?
Acknowledgement is the initial step. Once you’ve established the debt’s authenticity, it’s crucial to engage with Equita. Whether you opt for a direct call using the Equita contact number or choose the online Equita payment portal, communication is vital. They are often open to payment arrangements or discussions about settling the debt.
After contacting them, they will ask you to make a direct payment through a single payment or via a payment plan. If you’re unable to pay due to your financial situation, you can take up a debt solution.
In some cases, you might not have to pay them at all. This included situations where your debt is statute-barred.
For a debt to be statute-barred, you need to meet the below criteria at the same time:
- You have not made any payments in the last six years (5 years in Scotland)
- You have not admitted that you owe the debt in the last six years
- You have not received a County Court Judgment (CCJ) for it
Note that statute-barred status does not apply to every debt. HMRC debts are enforceable for decades, and debts that you’ve received a CCJ for during the 5 to 6-year timeframe will be enforceable for the duration of the County Court Judgment (CCJ).
If you want more guidance regarding this matter, feel free to contact a debt charity (which we’ve provided at the end of the article) for advice.
Are Equita Bailiffs?
Yes, Equita is a company that has debt collectors as well as bailiffs. Note that the two are not the same and have a significant difference in the UK.
This is why, in a case where Equita visits your home, it’s crucial that you ask them if they’re a debt collector or a bailiff. Since bailiffs have more legal powers than a debt collectors, it’s important that you identify who they are so that you can take necessary steps accordingly.
Enforcement officers have a certificate from a County Court Judge (CCJ). It gives them the legal right to seize possessions. They will sell these items at an auction and use that generated money to settle the debt and all bailiffs’ charges.
Whereas debt collectors don’t have the right to seize goods. They can only chase debtors for payment. Equita debt collectors collect various types of unpaid debt on behalf of local authorities in England and Wales. Some of these include:
- Council tax
- Parking penalty
- Charges notices
- Unpaid rent arrears
A Bailiff has Shown Up at My Home
If a bailiff shows up at your home, firstly, request proper identification. If genuine, discuss and potentially negotiate a payment arrangement that you can manage. Ignoring or antagonising them isn’t recommended, as it will affect your debt issue negatively.
Usually, you’re not obligated to open your door for them. Bailiffs don’t have the right to enter your home:
- By force, such as breaking your door or pushing past you when you try to close it, etc.
- If only vulnerable individuals at home, such as children or a person with a disability
- Between 9 pm and 6 am
- Through a window or another opening. They should enter only through the door.
Equita must send a Notice of Enforcement to the debtor at least 7 days prior before taking further action. This is called the compliance stage. During this time, the debtor can aim to clear the debt or communicate with the creditor to find a solution.
If you haven’t received an Equita Notice of Enforcement, bailiffs cannot come to your home. But if you receive a notice, it’s crucial that you respond. If you don’t, they can take further action against you.
Should You Pay the Debt Back to Equita?
If you identify that the debt is yours, you should pay. Ask for a payment plan if you’re unable to pay the debt. In this case, you might have to provide proof of your income and expenditure.
Debt Collectors and Their Tactics
Equita uses a series of strategies, ranging from phone calls to letters and emails. Their ultimate goal is to retrieve what’s rightfully owed. However, they’re bound by strict regulations, ensuring respectful and legal methods are employed.
Some tactics they may use include:
- Frequent calls
- Frequent text messages
- Multiple letters
- Combination of the above
In some cases, this is viewed as harassment. If they continue to bombard you with calls and messages even after you request them to contact you only through letters or email, make a complaint to the Financial Ombudsman Service (FOS).
So note that even though they use these tactics to get you to pay, they cannot harass or bully you.
What the Law Says About Debt Collectors
Debt collectors, including Equita, are governed by stringent UK regulations. This means they must operate within certain boundaries. Aggressive or threatening tactics are forbidden, and they must always respect the debtor’s rights and privacy.
- Be honest about information regarding the debtors and treat them fairly
- Provide clear information and avoid misleading them
- Be empathetic and understand the position of debtors
How do I Make a Complaint about Equita Bailiffs?
If you’ve been treated unfairly, raising your concerns not only protects your rights but also helps ensure that agencies maintain their high standards. With Equita being one of the leading debt collection agencies in the UK, they value feedback and strive to address grievances.
First, directly make a complaint to Equita Ltd. Before making that call or sending an email, make sure you have all pertinent details. This might include:
- The name of the person you spoke to
- Date and time of communication
- Any reference numbers
- Detailed notes on what went wrong
Make the Call: Dial the Equita contact number, which is often the quickest way to get a response. Remember to stay calm and explain your situation clearly.
Write an Email or Letter: If you’re more comfortable with written communication or need to include supporting documents, this is a great option. But where to send it? You can find their official contact details easily online. When writing, always remain factual and to the point.
Note that Equita usually acknowledges complaints within five working days.
Contact the Financial Ombudsman Service (FOS) if Equita doesn’t resolve the matter. They will look into the issue and will issue a fine to the company or ask them to pay you compensation if the accusations are proven true.
If you believe they have broken any rules of the Civil Enforcement Association (CIVEA), you can make a complaint to them directly.
Why You Should Pay Back the Debt from Equita Bailiffs Debt Collectors
If you don’t make the payments, it will affect your credit score. Thus, getting credit won’t be easy in the future. So if you clear your payments fast, it will help your credit score to improve.
So, deal with your debts upfront and stop their impact on your credit rating. Suppose you’re struggling to make payments. There are many debt solutions that you can take up to start building your credit score.
Settling debts isn’t just about money; it’s about trust. By clearing your debts, you send a message that you’re reliable and trustworthy, attributes that can benefit you in various walks of life.
There is no doubt that debt is stressful. And if Equita debt collectors are continuously contacting you, this will worsen your stress. Paying off your debt will not only stop their calls and reachouts, but it will also bring you peace of mind.
Also, make sure that you don’t let debt collectors bully you into paying more than what you can. Check your income and expenditure and see if it is something you can do. Don’t agree to anything that would put you in a difficult situation.
If you spoke with this debt collection company and they are causing you to feel stressed or are unfairly treating you, speak to the Financial Ombudsman about it. Reach out to them by phone at 0300 123 9123 or 0800 023 4567.
Will Equita Bailiffs Affect My Credit Score?
Yes, bailiffs and debt collectors negatively impact your credit score. Once your debts get defaulted on an account with a credit or don’t make payments, it affects your credit report. Your credit score isn’t just a number; it’s a reflection of your financial behaviour. Banks, lenders, and even some employers look at it.
Ignoring that letter or avoiding the 01604 628360 calls might seem tempting, but there are consequences. Unsettled debts with Equita can negatively impact your score, making future financial endeavours challenging.
After your debt is sold to debt collectors, it will show as a second collection account on your credit report. In this case, the original entry will appear as ‘sold’, which is a huge red flag for lenders. If a second entry is not added to the report, the entry for your initial debt can be changed to include the information of the debt collection company.
Note that such collection accounts have a negative impact on your credit report. It will remain on the report for six years and will make it difficult for you to get credit in the future. This is because lenders check your credit file to check if you’re a high-risk customer.
A high-risk customer is someone who might have difficulty paying off debt on time. So, if you have had a County Court judgment (CCJ), this means you had trouble paying debt in the past, and someone had to go to court against you for it.
Thus, in this case, lenders will be reluctant to offer you credit; however, after six years, your credit report clears, and you will find it easier to borrow money again.
Apart from this, note that debt solutions that you take up also appear on your credit report for six years. As a result, it will affect your credit report. But after six years, it will clear out from your report, and your credit score will improve. Thereafter, you will find it easier to borrow money again.
Equita Bailiffs Debt Collectors Contact Details
Whether you have queries, complaints, or simply seek clarification, Equita is reachable. The most direct method is via their official Equita contact number: 01604 628360.
Additionally, for those more inclined towards digital methods, their Equita payment portal online offers a host of functionalities. Their contact details are as follows:
|Phone number:||01604 628 360|
|Address:||Equita Ltd, 42-44 Henry Street, Northampton, NN1 4BZ|
|Online Enquiry for Outstanding Account||https://equita.co.uk/contact-us/outstanding-account/|
Dealing with Debt Issues
Tackling debt can feel overwhelming. However, resources and assistance are available. Charities, government-backed schemes, and even financial advisors can offer guidance and actionable steps.
Furthermore, working out a budget is also helpful. Create a budget including your expenses and your income. Even though financial planning is not easy, it is crucial if you want to get back in control of your finances.
According to the budget, you can use any extra money you have left in order to pay the debts. But make sure that you have enough money to pay for your essentials, such as
- Mortgage payments
If Equita continues to bother you even after you make payments or they refuse to accept your payments, make a complaint to the Financial Ombudsman Service (FOS).
Lies by Debt Collectors
While Equita has a reputation for being straightforward, it’s always good to be vigilant. Some agencies might employ scare tactics or misinformation. Ensure you’re well-informed and consult professional advice if unsure.
Reduce Your Stress
Financial pressures can be taxing. By actively engaging with collectors, seeking advice, and exploring available resources, you can chart a path towards financial stability.
Take up a payment plan or a debt solution, or simply explain your financial situation to them. You can also ask them to stop reaching out to you. But to do this, you should have an arrangement even if you’re unable to pay. Note that if it’s affecting your mental well-being, you will find a benefit from the new Breathing Space scheme beneficial.
The New Debt Breathing Space Scheme
A relatively recent development, this scheme provides a window of 60 days where debtors can seek advice and formulate a plan without the added stress of mounting interest or actions by collectors.
During this period, if you’re eligible, there will be no:
- Extra fees
- Added interest
- Enforcement action
Two types of Breathing Space you can apply for include:
Can I Get a Debt Solution?
Yes, if you’re struggling with debt, you can get a debt solution. There are various debt solutions available in the UK. So we recommend that you contact a debt charity and get some advice regarding it. Different situations call for different remedies.
Thus, some debt solutions include the following:
For Individual Voluntary Arrangement (IVA), pay a portion of your debt every month, and your creditors agree not to contact you during the IVA. This amount is then divided among your creditors.
An IVA lasts for 5 to 6 years, and any debt that’s remaining after this period is written off. Note that IVAs are not for everyone. To be eligible, you should owe thousands of pounds to multiple creditors. You should also have some disposable income every month.
If you’re in a situation where your total debt is below £20,000 and you have a low disposable income, a Debt Relief Order (DRO) might be the way forward. It’s like a pause button, freezing your debt for 12 months. And your creditors agree not to contact you during this time. After 12 months, if your financial situation doesn’t improve, your debt gets written off.
A Debt Management Plan (DMP) is an informal agreement that allows you to pay your debts through a single payment every month. Note that since it’s informal, you’re not tied to a DMP for a minimum amount.
If you have no realistic possibility of ever paying off your debts, declaring Bankruptcy might be suitable for you. However, it is a serious situation and shouldn’t be taken lightly.
Can Anyone Help with Your Debt?
There are many nonprofit organisations that help debtors. Also, the digital age brings the advantage of online communities. Feel free to reach out to debt charities such as the Citizens Advice Bureau (CAB) and StepChange.
They provide free debt advice and guidance for debtors. These platforms often have experienced members sharing personal experiences.
What if Your Debt is Out of Hand?
If you’re finding it difficult to pay off your debt, you can get an IVA.
- IVA (Individual Voluntary Arrangement): This isn’t just another acronym. It’s a formal agreement between you and your creditors. After the end of the IVA, your remaining debt will be written off.
If you want to know if you’re eligible for an IVA, feel free to fill out our online form, and our Money Advisor team will assist you.
You can also get a Debt Relief Order. But to be eligible, you should have at least £75 every month after all your expenses.
Debt doesn’t define you. These solutions aim to offer a new beginning, free from past financial burdens.
The journey to financial freedom might seem like a winding road with unexpected turns. But with a roadmap and guidance, you can navigate through.
If you can pay off your debt, it is best you do. In a case where a debt collector harasses or bullies you, seek advice from the Financial Ombudsman. If they’re found guilty, they might even lose their license or have to pay you compensation.
Who are Equita Debt Collectors?
Equita is a debt recovery and bailiff company that works with multiple local authorities in the UK.
They are famous for using innovative technology to check if a debt is paid. They also have a good hold on the market, which allows them to identify and handle any issues that arise.
Apart from debt collection, they also engage with debtors to give advice on their situations and set up payment plans.
Are Equita Debt Collectors Legit?
Yes, Equita, with its longstanding presence, has carved a niche in the UK’s debt recovery landscape. Thus, their knowledge and experience in the industry is vast. They ensure that their services are legitimate for their clients as well as debtors.
What do Equita Debt Collectors Do?
From advising local authorities to initiating legal actions when needed, Equita plays a pivotal role in debt recovery. They don’t purchase debt from creditors. They only chase debtors to collect debt on behalf of creditors.
Some of their main clients include local authorities. This indicates that the type of debt that they chase includes rent payments or other types of fines.
What Does the Equita Debt Collection Process Look Like?
Every debtor has a story, and Equita knows that. Their methodical approach starts with understanding the debtor’s situation. From emails to calls, their aim is resolution.
They may contact debtors and request them to make the payment upfront. If a debtor is unable to pay, they may offer a payment plan. Debtors can make the payment over the phone or even through their online portal.
Where Can I Get Professional Advice?
If you’re struggling to pay off your debt and are unsure of what you should do, we recommend you reach out to a debt charity.
There are many debt charities that you can reach out to in the UK. Some of these include:
- National Debtline
- Citizens Advice
- Debt Advice Foundation
- Originating from Northampton, Equita has established itself as one of the UK’s most prominent debt recovery agencies. They cater to over 200 UK local authorities.
- Equita Bailiffs Debt Collectors specialise in offering a variety of debt management services, including local taxation, civil parking enforcement, and debt advice, primarily serving local authorities.
- With a longstanding reputation in the UK, Equita is not only legit but also highly respected within the debt recovery landscape.
- Equita encompasses both bailiffs and debt collectors. It’s essential to ask any visiting agent about their specific role, especially since bailiffs possess additional legal powers.
- Before committing to any payments, always verify the legitimacy of the debt. Request evidence, such as the original credit agreement, to ensure it’s not a scam or mistake.
- If you’re in a tight spot and can’t settle the full amount, Equita might offer arrangements for smaller payments. Alternatively, consider debt solutions like IVAs or DROs.
- There are numerous avenues for advice and help. Organisations like Citizens Advice and StepChange can be particularly beneficial.
- It’s crucial to recognise that unresolved disputes or unpaid debts with agencies, including uEquita, can adversely affect your credit score, impacting your future financial undertakings.
- The importance of getting professional advice can’t be emphasised enough. Multiple organisations, including the National Debtline, provide tailored insights to help individuals navigate their debt.
- Many UK residents might be eligible to legally write off a portion of their debt, providing them with financial relief and a pathway to better financial health.