Who are Equita?
Equita provide debt recovery services to businesses across the UK. The company is a member of the Capita Group, who offer professional services and outsourcing solutions.
Equita debt collection are legitimate debt collectors, and the company has over 140 years of experience in this sector, working with hundreds of companies and councils. They employ around 1,000 people, which includes approximately 350 designated debt enforcement officers who go on field visits, also known as enforcement agents or bailiffs. They have registered offices in Northamptonshire and specialise in recouping revenue for local councils such as taxation receipts.
According to their website, the company can explain their debt collection philosophy in just four words: diligent, driven, swift, intelligence.
Who are Equita accredited by?
The firm has accreditations with a range of bodies. Three of the most prominent ones are:
- Credit Services Association
- British Parking Association
- Civil enforcement Association
Who do Equita collect for?
Equita Ltd provide debt collection services for the following types of businesses and services:
- Local authorities (from rural districts to London Boroughs) – council tax services
- Local authorities – parking fines
- Traffic warrant fines
- Landlords – rent arrears
- Utility companies – electricity, water and gas bills
- Unpaid business rates
Why are Equita contacting me?
If you are receiving messages from Equita, you likely have an unpaid bill, or you’ve broken the payment terms of a credit agreement with their customers, for example, local councils. As debt collectors, they have the right to buy debt cases from a variety of sources, and they hold a certificate to pursue the debt legally. Keep in mind that their primary reason for purchasing the debt is to make a profit. Dealing with debt agencies isn’t a game, and burying your head in the sand has no benefits; it will merely lead to more issues and stress in your life.
The best way forward is in fact to take a positive step towards finding an organisation that cares about you as a person, and can help you deal with Equita and its staff.
Can Equita force entry?
Bailiffs must abide by specific industry standards, even when carrying out a liability order, especially in the current climate. Bailiffs from any enforcement agent are only allowed to force entry into your home as a final resort if your unpaid debt relates to the following:
- Stamp duty
- Income tax
- A criminal fine
Can bailiffs take all of my possessions?
There are restrictions on the types of goods bailiffs can seize; they can not take any equipment that does not belong to you, such as a work mobile phone, or take essentials for sale, including belongings such as:
- Kitchen equipment.
Bailiffs should not enter the property if you have young family members present; that is anyone under the age of 16. They can, however, visit you multiple times and take items that are outside your property. Take care to leave nothing of value in your front garden.
Do not let bailiffs from Equita into your house. Instead, call us for free on 0330 1228447, and we will do our best to deal with the Equita bailiffs on your behalf. You may also wish to remove your car and any other vehicle linked to you, from the property as bailiffs can make arrangements to seize these assets and sell them to recoup their costs.
What fees do Equita bailiffs charge?
If bailiffs visit your property, they may add a collection fee to your account. The fee typically has two parts; a fixed fee plus 7.5% of any debt balance over £1,500.
How do Equita work?
Equita use technology that is known as a customer relationship management system to keep track of who owes them money once they have purchased a debt portfolio.
You will typically first hear from Equita by post when they buy your debt from a previous creditor. This letter is called a Notice of Enforcement, and it will usually give you seven days to make payment or call the company about your debts. You may also receive contact by text message and on any of your known telephone numbers in this period.
They will then typically follow these next steps:
- If you don’t have open lines of communication with Equita, they will start bailiff action. They will send a debt collector to your home to agree an immediate repayment amount or to seize goods from your land, or from within your home if you let them into your property. Legislation does not require you to open your door or give them access to your property. If you feel physically threatened, for example by a seemingly violent man, by law you can call the police. They are also not allowed to make false threats, such as telling you they will take you to prison or jail if you don’t pay now.
- At this enforcement stage, Equita will add additional fees to your debt status.
- If the bailiffs are not able to recover a suitable amount of your debt through these methods, Equita may proceed with High Court action, to obtain a County Court Judgement (CCJ) to force you to pay the debt through a variety of methods. If debtors do not pay County Court Judgements within 30 days, the court order stays on your credit rating for six years, which will make it challenging to secure further financing from banks or other providers.
If you receive a letter from Equita, you can contact us for guidance on handling the situation and the regulations that protect you in some instances. Let our knowledge and expertise with the rules of the debt industry guide you, and bring you some peace. We know their tactics and the loopholes you can exploit.
Understanding your options for debt help
If your total debt exceeds £5,000, then you may have the option to apply for an Individual Voluntary Arrangement (IVA).
An IVA consolidates all of your debt into a single account while freezing all of the interest and charges, so you no longer feel that you are drowning against an ever-growing debt. The IVA organiser will work with you to set an affordable monthly payment, based on your income and expenditure, for five years. At the end of this time, the rest of the debt disappears. You will receive protection from your creditors and any bullying tactics during the IVA period.
An IVA is a distinct debt arrangement scheme to a debt relief order (DRO). A DRO only lasts for 12 months. This type of facility is most suitable for individuals on low incomes who have no means of making their debt repayments and who are facing bankruptcy.
If you have questions about IVAs, debt guidelines, courts or another debt matter, you are welcome to call a member of our advisor team today. We will take the time to fully understand your circumstances and work with you to find the best solution for your needs, and lower your stress in the process.
We regularly receive messages of thanks and positive reviews from the clients we help. You can read some of these in the ‘Reviews’ section of our website, along the top menu.
How can I contact Equita?
If you have received contact from Equita or their bailiffs, then we recommend that you get support from free debt advice quickly. You can contact our team of advisors for a confidential call on 0330 1228447, which should be free from mobiles, or by clicking on the ‘Get Started for Free’ button. No question is too big or small.
If you need to reach Equita directly, their contact information is as follows:
- Phone: 01604 628 360
- Post: Equita Ltd, 42-44 Henry Street, Northampton, NN1 4BZ – Equita ask that you include your reference number, name and address in all letters
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Equita Frequently Asked Questions
Are Equita a legitimate business?
Equita Limited is a legitimate business, registered in England and Wales from July 1999, under company registration number 3168371. It has a registered office address at 42-44 Henry Street, Northampton, NN1 4BZ.
Equita are part of the Capita Group.
Where can I go for free help and support?
Our team of experts is just a phone call away and ready to answer your questions. We have vast experience in dealing with enforcement agents and help individuals to regain power and control, no matter the situation.
There are also numerous consumer debt advice organisations, who are there to support you, including:
- National Debtline
- Citizens Advice Bureau
When you get in touch with one of these institutions, you’ll soon realise just many how people are battling debt problems, and that you have a lot of support at your fingertips.
Any one of these organisations can help you to understand your rights if you are receiving threats from creditors. They also offer practical support with areas such as how to make a complaint, how to budget, and what behaviours constitute harassment if you are receiving phone calls, letters, text messages or bailiff visits.
Take the time to read an article, or a collection of their posts to understand more about the debt market. Then use this information to improve your chances of a debt-free future. Remember there is always something that you can do, and quite often there’s more than one thing.
Do Equita act as an enforcement agency for HMRC?
HMRC use numerous enforcement agencies to collect debt relating to unpaid tax bills, which is government money. At the time of writing, Equita bailiffs are not providing debt agency services for HMRC.
What is the Equita email address?
The best email address to use when contacting Equita is email@example.com.
How can I make debt payments to Equita?
Before taking responsibility as a debtor, we recommend that you ask for proof and evidence of the debt and its balance, if you do not recognise it. It’s possible to receive messages about enforcement action that relates to other debtors.
Before you pay anything, check your debt letter or notice from Equita to find the details of your debt account and which creditor, or list of creditors the bill originates from. You are welcome to call our team for independent advice. Otherwise, you can make payments to Equita through the following options:
- Credit card
- Debit card
- Lump sum payment
- Payment plan – Equita are likely to be happy to accept overpayments on this play
- Direct payment to Equita bailiffs/mr guys during enforcement action
- Direct debit
If Equita have taken your case to court, they may receive an order that allows their enforcement officer to seize your possessions to the value of the debt if you do not pay within 30 days of the court action. It’s best to involve us as soon as possible to avoid everything escalating to this stage.
What is Equita Northampton?
Equita’s Northampton office is the debt collector’s registered office address. They may also have an office in Manchester.
Will a CCJ impact my credit file now and in the future?
Having a CCJ on your credit report makes it much more difficult for you to secure funding from banks or other finance companies in the future. However, if you pay the CCJ in full within 30 days of when the court issues it, then the CCJ will not be placed on your credit report. After this time, it will stay on your credit file for six years.
What rights do I have when dealing with Equita bailiffs?
If you receive a visit from Equita bailiffs, you do not have to let them into your property. You can communicate with them through your letterbox, by phone or ask them to send you a letter.
They do not have a right to force entry into your home unless they are collecting for very specific types of debt, such as:
- criminal fines
- HMRC tax debts such as unpaid income tax
You are within your rights to ask the bailiff to show you their ID, such as a badge, certificate or identification card, and proof of your debt. If the individual who visits you identifies themself as a ‘debt collector’ rather than a bailiff, they have to abide by any request you make for them to leave your property. A debt collector has fewer rights.
Can Equita bailiffs break in?
Equita bailiffs can only force entry for very specific types of debt. In that circumstance, they must show that they have only used reasonable force, which generally means using a locksmith.
What if I am not happy with how Equita have handled my case?
In the first instance you should contact Equita, quoting your reference number and let them know why you are dissatisfied with their service.
If you have raised a complaint with Equita and you are not happy with their response, you can contact the Financial Ombudsman Service (FOS) through the complaint form on their website, explaining the reasons why you feel you have not been treated fairly as a client. The OFT no longer has authority in this process.