LayerSlider – Conveyancing 26Jan18 – Base

New EJO changes – how will these affect creditors?

By James McIlveen – Senior Legal Executive. Published 14 February 2018

In this blog, debt-recovery specialist James McIlveen discusses new changes implemented by the Enforcements of Judgments Office which will affect creditors.

The EJO recently announced the redaction of certain personal information from the means assessment reports provided to creditors. The data contained in these reports ably assists creditors when identifying debtors and attaching assets.

The personal data to be redacted will include: DOB, National Insurance numbers, Payroll numbers, Mortgage account numbers, Bank sort code and account numbers, and the names of any children over 18 years of age.

These changes, which have been made in response to upcoming GDPR legislation, are now viewed by some as counterproductive – creating a ‘barrier’ to the physical collection of debt liabilities. By omitting this information, creditors will be unable to distinguish between people of the same name, address or otherwise.

Current data protection specifically provides for the disclosure of this information should same be required for legal process or pending legal action.

As a recent case highlighted, the father of a debtor – both with the same name – impersonated his son in an attempt to accept responsibility for the judgment debt (albeit that he was unemployed without assets). After thoroughly checking the personal data, it was revealed to be the wrong person. Had the data not been checked and compared, then a certificate of unenforceability would have resulted.

Going forward, this type of situation may become more prominent, as the personal data to identify the correct person will not be readily available. This means that all companies may now have to review their original terms and conditions of trade to provide for customers irrevocable consent to the release of such information in the event of legal action.

For further information on this article, please contact James via email: jm@mkblaw.co.uk or call: 028 9024 2450

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