Summary Warrants and Charges to Pay
1 April 2008

Part 12 of the 2007 Act that dealt with Summary Warrants and Charges to Pay was brought into force on 1 April 2008. A separate Article dealt with the fact that Time to Pay Orders are now competent on Summary Warrants granted in respect of Council Tax and Non-Domestic Rates Arrears.

A possibly more significant change to summary warrant procedure is the requirement of service of a charge prior to certain diligences. There has been criticism in certain quarters that the summary warrant procedure did not give proper warning that diligence would take place. In practice a degree of warning was given in the correspondence issued to debtors. The new provisions bring some formality to that warning procedure.

A charge is now required before the following diligences are executed by virtue of a summary warrant

  • Earnings Arrestment
  • Arrestment (e.g. Bank arrestment)
  • Attachment including exceptional attachment

This brings summary warrant enforcement procedure into line with ordinary creditors as far as earnings arrestments and attachments are concerned. It should be noted that creditors with a decree in a non-summary warrant case do not require to serve a charge prior to an arrestment such as a bank arrestment.