FAKE bailiffs are working in tandem with gypsy travellers in a scam to get private landowners to pay out thousands for bogus evictions.
This is a headline being reported today by the daily express and it is something our Enforcement Agents (Bailiffs) witnessed ourselves recently where we noticed individuals carrying out common law evictions whilst wearing T-Shirts blazen with the words High Court Enforcement something that drew our attention to their actions.
The gentlemen concerned were very friendly with the members of the traveller community and even knew the children by name, they even stated to bystanders that they were Enforcement Agents but thats when the real alarm bells rang as i know one of the individuals was not an Enforcement Agent and had in fact been rejected for the job as he was not deemed to be a fit and proper person to be certificated by the courts.
They took a very long time in removing the unwanted guests and were witnessed approaching other businesses to help remove these trespassers and could do for a reduced rate if cash. Once this was completed the travellers left apart from a few left behind on the car park of a local training company which we had just been engaged by via the contact centre to remove the travellers.
We had removed travellers from the top car park under the threat of violence but we do not let threats deter us and removed them from the site, our agents moved to the site of the training company and were met by five travellers in two caravans, we advised they needed to move but was met by the female telling us the other agents would of offered us money to move but this landlord is not using them so are you going to pay us.
Wolf Enforcement Services never have and never will offer trespassers money to leave site as this encourages the travellers to abuse the clients generosity and keep returning with the expectation of payment.
It is a criminal offence to porport to be an Enforcement Agent and can carry heavy fines but this did not sem to deter these individuals.
We would recommend that if you are approached by people purporting to be Enforcement Agents you can check their credential at the HMCTS Website.
If they turn up out of the blue then be very careful as they may be part of a scam, when choicing your Enforcement Company make sure they have the following because you need to remember they will be acting as your agent and you are responsible for their actions.
The Enforcement Agent’s company should be able to:
- Provide copies of Insurance documents including Public Liability, Employers Liability and Professional Indemnity
- Provide references from satisfied clients
- Provide a health and safety Risk Assessment of the task or ideally, they should have a health and safety accreditation like CHAS or Safe Contractor
- Once their initial visit is done, if needed, provide you with a RAMS (Risk Assessment Method Statement)
- Provide enough resources to do the job. Beware of companies sending one man to carry out any sort of eviction. One man may be ok to do a Risk Assessment or Serve Notice, but think about how vulnerable one man evicting numerous individuals could be; effectively putting that individual at risk
- At least one of the team should be Certificated Enforcement Agent; so always ask to see the Certificate of the lead Enforcement Agent
- Ensure at least one Enforcement Agent has Body Worn Video to record events
- The company should be a member of a trade association e.g. CEAA or CIVEA
What are the consequences of not employing a professional Enforcement Agency to carry out an eviction?
It all depends of course on what happens; any Enforcement Agent company is only acting as your agent and you are the entity that is likely to be sued or face the HSE if anyone is hurt. This includes trespassers, Enforcement Agents, your staff or members of the public. There are also issues and consequences if trespassers goods are damaged.
You must be able prove you carried out due diligence before appointing an Enforcement Agency!
The Client may be held responsible in any of the following situations:
- If the Enforcement Agency has not carried out a proper Risk Assessment
- If the Enforcement Agency has used insufficient Agents to carry out the eviction
- If the Enforcement Agency has inadequate Employers/Public Liability Insurance
- If the Enforcement Agency uses Agents that are not Certificated or adequately trained
At Wolf Enforcement Services
- We will always provide you with copies of our insurance
- We are CHAS accredited
- We will provide a Risk Assessment and where required a RAMS or an Operational Order
- We will provide at least one Enforcement Agent that has Body Worn Video
- We will supply enough Agents to carry out the required task safely
- We ensure our Agents have suitable Eviction & Intervention Training
- We are recognised by the CEAA