New section 73H – Failure to disclose information
694.Section 73H(1) provides that, where an arrestee fails to make a disclosure under section 73G, the sheriff may, on the application of the creditor, order the arrestee to pay the creditor the lesser of either the sum due by the debtor to the creditor or the amount which represents the minimum protected balance in bank accounts which are subject to an arrestment (at the time of the passing of this Act, £370).
695.Subsection (2) provides that in the case of an arrestment on the dependence of an action, the sanction in subsection (1) cannot be applied until the creditor has served a copy of the final decree in the action (see section 73C). The failure to disclose information can be treated as a contempt of court in arrestment on the dependence cases. Contempt of court is punishable by any of, or a combination of, admonition, fine and (in extreme cases) imprisonment or detention.
696.Where the arrestee pays over a sum ordered under subsection (1) following a failure to disclose information, subsection (3) provides that the amount paid reduces the debt owed by the debtor to the creditor by that amount and the arrestee is not allowed to recover that amount from the debtor.
697.Subsection (4) gives an arrestee a right of appeal against an order to pay money to the creditor following a failure to disclose information. The appeal must be made to the sheriff principal within 2 weeks of the date of the order and can only be on a point of law. There is no further right of appeal.