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Attachment of Earnings Act 1971

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9 Variation, lapse and discharge of orders.E+W

(1)The court [F1, or where an attachment of earnings order is made under Schedule 5 to the Courts Act 2003, the court or the fines officer as the case may be,] may make an order discharging or varying an attachment of earnings order.

(2)Where an order is varied, the employer shall, if he has been served with notice of the variation, comply with the order as varied; but he shall be under no liablility for non-compliance before seven days have elapsed since the service.

(3)Rules of court may make provision—

(a)as to the circumstances in which an attachment of earnings order [F2made under this Act] may be varied or discharged by the court of its own motion;

[F3(aa)as to the circumstances in which an attachment of earnings order made under Schedule 5 to the Courts Act 2003 may be varied or discharged by the court or the fines officer of its or his own motion;]

(b)in the case of an attachment of earnings order made by a magistrates’ court, for enabling a single justice, on an application made by the debtor on the ground of a material change in his resources and needs since the order was made or last varied, to vary the order for a period of not more than four weeks by an increase of the protected earnings rate.

(4)Where an attachment of earnings order has been made and the person to whom it is directed ceases to have the debtor in his employment, the order shall lapse (except as respects deduction from earnings paid after the cesser and payment to the collecting officer of amounts deducted at any time) and be of no effect unless and until the court [F4, or where the order was made under Schedule 5 to the Courts Act 2003, unless and until the court or the fines officer as the case may be,] again directs it to a person (whether the same as before or another) who appears to the court [F5or the fines officer (as the case may be)] to have the debtor in his employment.

(5)The lapse of an order under subsection (4) above shall not prevent its being treated as remaining in force for other purposes.

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