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What is a charge for payment in Scotland?

Sharon McDougall - Updated - 14th May 2024 - 3 minutes to read

If you have been struggling with debt and have found yourself unable to make the required payments to your creditors, you may eventually be in the position where your creditors look to take further action against you to recover the money you owe. If this is the case, they may ask a sheriff officer to issue you with a charge for payment.

What is a charge for payment?

A charge for payment is a formal demand for you to pay the money you owe. This amount will include the original debt along with any interest or charges which have accrued over time. Charge for payment is a step which must be taken before diligence, or enforcement, proceedings can begin.

You will typically be given 14 days to pay the money you owe or come to an alternative arrangement with your creditor or the sheriff officer.

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What happens if I cannot pay within 14 days?

You can ask for time to pay when you respond to the charge for payment. If accepted, you will be allowed to pay back the money you owe through a series of monthly instalments rather than all at once. Not only does this make it easier for you to repay the money, doing this also protects you from any further action from that creditor. Should the amount you owe to this creditor be lower than £5,000, you have the right to request additional time to pay at any point. This is done through the ‘simple procedure’ process.

It is important to remember, however, that agreeing to a time to pay arrangement only protects you from further action from the creditor who served you with the charge for payment; any other creditors you may have will still be able to chase you for payment or initiate legal proceedings of their own against you.

What is the next step after charge for payment?

If you ignore or otherwise fail to respond to the charge for payment, it will expire after 14 days and the court will automatically make a judgment against you allowing for enforcement action to take place.

After the charge for payment has expired it is likely that diligence will be used to recoup the money you owe. This can take many forms depending on your individual situation and the amount of money you owe, and can include deducting money directly from your wages, freezing your bank account, or removing valuable items from your home.

Due to this it is absolutely vital that you seek professional advice as soon as you are served with such a notice. Ignoring the issue is not an option as this will only lead to further and more serious action being taken against you. Therefore you should make it a priority to seek the help and guidance of debt experts who will be able to suggest the best way forward for you.

How Scotland Debt Solutions can help

At Scotland Debt Solutions we have almost 30 years’ experience of helping Scots out of debt. We will take the time to understand your situation in order to provide you with individual advice tailored to you. If you have been served with a charge for payment, or fear this may be the next step your creditors are looking to take against you, call our experts today and take the first step towards resolving your debt worries.

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Sharon McDougall


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