Section 22 – Release of vehicle from attachment
54.This section provides for the protection of vehicles where auction would be unduly harsh in the circumstances, for example, vehicles used for travel to work or for regular medical treatment in a rural area not serviced by public transport. Circumstances which would constitute undue harshness are not specified, thus allowing the sheriff to make a decision based on the debtor’s individual circumstances. This section implements recommendation 11 of the Scottish Law Commission in Scot Law Com No 177.
55.Section 22(1) entitles the sheriff, on an application by the debtor, to make an order for release of the vehicle. Section 22(2) restricts the release to vehicles whose value does not exceed £1,000. This monetary limit may be varied by the Scottish Ministers in regulations. Section 22(3) provides that, where the value of the vehicle is over £1,000, the sheriff may order the sale of the vehicle and for the proceeds of sale up to £1,000 to be paid to the debtor to enable a replacement vehicle to be obtained and for any surplus to remain in court. Section 22(5) provides that if the vehicle cannot be sold within 14 days of the date of the order the attachment will cease to have effect.