Dealing with Debt Collectors in Scotland

If you are being hassled by Debt collectors and Sheriff Officers in Scotland it can be a daunting and intimidating time, especially if you are already trying to juggle debts and general stresses of day-to-day modern life.

The first thing to remember is that you don't have to discuss anything with these people until you seek advice – so tell them nothing. Don’t give them contact details, information about your job, bank details or any other personal information that they could use to intimidate or force your arm.

Sherrif Officers and Messenger at Arms

If you are not repaying your debts in Scotland creditors will take legal action by contacting the Sheriff court in your district. The court will then appoint a Sheriff Officer who is responsible for serving you documents and enforcing court orders. The Sherrif Officer who is appointed can only opporate in their Sheriff Court district and their jurisdiction is limited to this area only.

Messenger at arms

Messenger at arms are similar to Sheriff officers however they have jurisdiction throughout Scotland. Both Sherrif Officers and Messengers at arms are employed by businesses and charge fees which are set by Act of Sederunt

What to expect if your creditors take legal action

Your creditor will apply for a decree forcign you to pay the outstanding debt.

You can offer to make reduced payments though the Sherrif court and should only offer to pay what you can afford.

Admitting liability for the claim

If you agree that you owe the money you can apply for what is known as a "time to pay direction". The Sherrif court can grant this for you and you can start making a realisitic payment based on your monthly finances.

Make sure you only enter the agreement of repayment if you are comfortable with the monthly amounts. If you have reviewed your monthly finances and find that you cannot realistically make the payments a Trust Deed or Debt arrangement Scheme could be better suited.