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Justice Act (Northern Ireland) 2016

Section 5: Default on payment: collection officer to contact debtor

This Section stipulates what a collection officer must or can do where an offender fails to comply with the collection order.  Section 5(2) provides the information that the collection officer can seek from an individual who has failed to comply with an order.   The information that can be required includes the debtor’s name, address, date of birth, National Insurance number, as well as details of earnings or income, welfare benefits, bank accounts or vehicles registered in their name (Section 5(2)).  Appropriate information can also be sought when the debtor is a company (Section 5(3)).

The Section also allows for the collection officer to apply to the court for a summons requiring the debtor to attend for a meeting with the collection officer should the debtor fail to make contact or fail to provide any of this information (Section 5(4)).  Failure to provide information when requested by a collection officer or to provide false information is an offence under Section 5(6) which can attract a penalty of up to £500 (as provided by Section 24 by way of a fine not exceeding level 2 on the standard scale).

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