As of today, Enforcement Agents are able to resume enforcement visits for cases where debtors have failed to uphold their payment plan, or have failed to contact us to arrange payment. Please note: our Enforcement Agents will not visit your property if you have not received prior communication from Dukes to advise that recovery is resuming and contact is required.
During the suspension of visits, efforts have been made to reconnect with customers with overdue debts and those who have missed repayments. A standardised re-connection letter, devised by CIVEA, has been sent to all customers in debt to their local authority as part of a post-lockdown support plan. This also included a vulnerability identification phase to identify any additional needs of people affected by the pandemic.
In any future case where agents encounter vulnerable people, additional support will be provided by welfare teams and referral to council support services.
Covid-19 and the return of enforcement visits
To prepare for the return of enforcement visits, all of our Enforcement Agents have completed mandatory CIVEA-approved training, covering the effective use of PPE, social distancing and protecting themselves as well as those they encounter.
All of our Agents will be equipped with surgical face masks and clear visors, protective gloves and hand sanitiser. All of which will be changed between visits.
All letters posted by Agents during visits will be sealed using self-seal envelopes and glue sticks only to avoid the spread of germs.
Our Enforcement Agents will remain 2 metres away from debtors at all times, and we ask that our customers respect this and apply this distance too. For your safety, our Agents will be willing to retreat to their van to continue conversations about repayment via the telephone in the Agent's vehicle. This will be done for the sole purpose of protecting your health and the health of the Agent, and protecting your privacy.
All of our Enforcement Agents wear body worn video cameras and will keep the camera recording throughout the whole visit with you (even when they retreat to the vehicle).
Payments will be requested to be cashless only where possible.
With regards to track and trace, the enforcement industry is adhering to PHE guidance that outlines anyone testing positive for Covid-19 must be contacted to submit further details. EAs are public individuals like everyone else, so if they feel unwell and suspect they have Covid-19, they will self-isolate and request a test.
We request any customers call us immediately if anyone in their house has symptoms, is self-isolating or has been asked to shield.
Please note: our Enforcement Agents will be wearing their branded 'uniform' and will have valid photographic ID cards that will be visible to you upon arrival at your property. If you suspect that the Enforcement Agent visiting you is a fraudster and does not work for Dukes, please call our office team immediately on 01785 825 500 who will be able to confirm if the Agent works for Dukes and is visiting you legitimately.