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Taxes Management Act 1970

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Distraint and poinding

61Distraint by collectors

(1)if a person neglects or refuses to pay the sum charged, upon demand made by the collector, the collector shall, for non-payment thereof, distrain upon the lands, tenements and premises in respect of which the tax is charged, or distrain the person charged by his goods and chattels, and all such other goods and chattels as the collector is hereby authorised to distrain.

(2)For the purpose of levying any such distress, a collector may, after obtaining a warrant for the purpose signed by the General Commissioners, break open, in the daytime, any house or premises, calling to his assistance any constable. Every such constable shall, when so required, aid and assist the collector in the execution of the warrant and in levying the distress in the house or premises.

(3)A levy or warrant to break open shall be executed by, or under the direction of, and in the presence of, the collector.

(4)A distress levied by the collector shall be kept for five days, at the costs and charges of the person neglecting or refusing to pay.

(5)If the person aforesaid does not pay the sum due, together with the costs and charges, within the said five days, the distress shall be appraised by two or more inhabitants of the parish in which the distress is taken, or by other sufficient persons, and shall be sold by public auction by the collector for payment of the sum due and all costs and charges. The costs and charges of taking, keeping, and selling the distress shall be retained by the collector, and any overplus coming by the distress, after the deduction of the costs and charges and of the sum due, shall be restored to the owner of the goods distrained.

62Priority of claim for tax

(1)No goods or chattels whatever, belonging to any person at the time any tax becomes in arrear, shall be liable to be taken by virtue of any execution or other process, warrant, or authority whatever, or by virtue of any assignment, on any account or pretence whatever, except at the suit of the landlord for rent, unless the person at whose suit the execution or seizure is made, or to whom the assignment was made, pays or causes to be paid to the collector, before the sale or removal of the goods or chattels, all arrears of tax which are due at the time of seizure, or which are payable for the year in which the seizure is made:

Provided that, where tax is claimed for more than one year, the person at whose instance the seizure has been made may, on paying to the collector the tax which is due for one whole year,

proceed in his seizure in like manner as if no tax had been claimed.

(2)In case of neglect or refusal to pay the tax so claimed or the tax for one whole year, as the case may be, the collector shall distrain the goods and chattels notwithstanding the seizure or assignment, and shall proceed to the sale thereof, as prescribed by this Act, for the purpose of obtaining payment of the whole of the tax charged and claimed, and the reasonable costs and charges attending such distress and sale, and every collector so doing shall be indemnified by virtue of this Act.

63Recovery in Scotland

In Scotland, the following provisions shall have effect—

(1)Upon certificate made to them by the collector that any tax is due and not paid, the General Commissioners, or sheriff or sheriff substitute for the county, shall issue a warrant for the collector recovering the said tax by poinding the goods and effects of any person entered in the certificate as being a defaulter, and any person who has made default in paying any sum which may be levied on him in respect of tax may be entered in the certificate as a defaulter, notwithstanding that he was not named in the assessment to tax:

(2)The warrant shall be executed by the sheriff officers of the county:

(3)The goods and effects so poinded shall be detained and kept on the ground, or at the house where the same were poinded, or in such other place of which the owner shall have notice, near to the said ground or house, as the officer so poinding the same shall think proper, for the space of five days, during which time the said goods and effects shall remain in the custody of the said officer, and liable to the payment of the whole tax in arrear and to the costs to be paid to the officer who poinded the same as hereinafter directed, unless the owner from whom the same were poinded shall redeem the same, within the said space of five days, by payment to the officer of the said tax in arrear and costs, to be settled in the same manner as if the said goods and effects had been sold as hereinafter directed:

(4)The goods and effects so poinded shall, after the expiration of the said five days, be valued and appraised by any two persons to be appointed by the officer (which two persons shall be obliged to value the same, under the penalty of £2 for each neglect or refusal), and shall be sold and disposed of, at a sum not less than the value, by the officer who does poind the same:

(5)The value shall be applied, in the first place to the satisfaction and payment of the tax owing by the person whose goods are so poinded, and, in the second place, to the payment for the trouble of the officer so poinding, at the rate of two shillings per pound of the tax for which the goods shall be so poinded unless the owner from whom the same were poinded shall redeem the same by payment of the appraised value, within the space of five days after the valuation, to the officer who poinded the same:

(6)In case any surplus remains of the price or value, after payment of the said tax, and after payment of what is allowed to be retained by the officer in manner herein directed, such surplus shall be returned to the owner from whom the goods were poinded:

(7)In case no purchaser appears at the said sale, then the said goods and effects, so poinded, shall be consigned and lodged in the hands of the sheriff of the county, or his substitute, and if not redeemed by the owner within the space of five days after the consignment in the hands of the said sheriff or sheriff substitute, the same shall be rouped, sold, and disposed of by order of the sheriff, in such manner, and at such time and place, as he shall appoint, he always being liable to the payment of the tax to the collector, and to payment to the officer who shall have poinded the same, for his trouble and expense, as before stated, and to the fees due to the officer, and being, in the third place, entitled to one shilling per pound of the value of the goods so disposed of, for his own pains and trouble, after preference and allowance of the said tax, and of what is appointed to be paid to the officer for his trouble:

(8)There shall also be allowed, to the officer so poinding, the expense of preserving the said goods and effects, and of maintaining the cattle, if there should happen to be any among the goods and effects so poinded, from the time of poinding the same, during the period allowed to the owner to redeem them, and also the expense of the sale; and in like manner the expense shall be allowed to the sheriff or sheriff substitute, for preserving and maintaining the goods or cattle poinded, during the period that the owner is allowed to redeem, after consignment in his hands, and until the sale thereof, and also the expense of the sale:

(9)Every auctioneer, or seller by commission, selling by auction, in Scotland, any goods or effects whatsoever by any mode of sale at auction, shall, at least three days before he begins any sale by way of auction, deliver or cause to be delivered to the collector a notice in writing, signed by such auctioneer or seller by auction, specifying therein the particular day when such sale is to begin, and the name and surname of the person whose goods and effects are to be sold, with his place of residence:

(10)If any such auctioneer or seller by auction shall sell any such goods and effects by way of auction, without delivering the notice hereinbefore required to be delivered, every such auctioneer, or person selling by auction, offending therein shall, for every such offence, incur a penalty of £50.

64Priority of claim for tax in Scotland

(1)No moveable goods and effects belonging to any person in Scotland, at the time any tax became in arrear or was payable, shall be liable to be taken by virtue of any poinding, sequestration for rent, or diligence whatever, or by any assignation, unless the person proceeding to take the said goods and effects pays the tax so in arrear or payable:

Provided that where the tax is claimed for more than one year the person proceeding to take the said goods and effects may on paying the tax for one whole year proceed as he might have done if no tax had been so claimed.

(2)If the said person neglects or refuses to pay the tax so in arrear or payable, or the tax for one whole year, as the case may be, the tax claimed shall, notwithstanding any proceeding at his instance for the purpose of taking the said moveable goods and effects, be recoverable by poinding and selling the said moveable goods and effects under warrant obtained in conformity with the provisions contained in section 63 above.

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