ROYAL COURT OF
Applications for a Dégrèvement
a judgment debtor (“debtor”) has received formal notification from
the Viscount, (following an Acte Vicomte
chargé d’écrire) to satisfy a
judgment debt, a judgment creditor (“creditor”) may, after a period
of two months in the case of a judgment of the Royal Court or a period of three
months in the case of a judgment of the Petty Debts Court apply to the Royal Court
for an act declaring the debtor’s immoveable property renounced with a
consequential order for a dégrèvement. Such applications have historically been
made without notice to the debtor.
effect from the date of this Practice Direction when making such an application,
the creditor must be able to demonstrate to the Court that all reasonable steps
have been taken to give notice to the debtor of the creditor’s intention
to make an application at that time on that day. Notice to the debtor should be given
substantially in the form set out in the attached schedule. Personal service is not necessary.
least 4 working days must elapse between the date on which notice of the
intended application is given to the debtor and the date for the hearing of the
application. All supporting
evidence to be relied upon at the hearing shall also be provided to the debtor
at the same time as the notice of the intended application is delivered.
Viscount is to be given written notice of the application (and all evidence relied
upon) at the same time as notice of the application is provided to the debtor.
Practice Direction shall take effect from 5th January, 2015.
Your current position and the dégrèvement
As you are aware, we are instructed by [creditor] and on
[date] judgment was taken against you in the sum of £[ ]. We obtained an order from the
[Royal/Petty Debts] Court (without notice to you) on [date] for an Acte Vicomte
chargé d’ecrire which was served on
you on [date]. That order gave you
notice that if you did not repay the debt within [two/three] calendar months
from the date of the order, your assets may be adjudged renounced by the Royal
Court. In other words any property you own could be seized for the benefit of
one or more of your creditors.
Unless payment in full is received by [date] our client has
instructed us to make an application for renunciation at the next Royal Court
sitting on [date]. This letter constitutes formal notice that this application
will be made; for any land or buildings you own the application will be for a
process known as dégrèvement.
For all your other possessions or property which is not land the
application will be for a process known as réalisation.
The purpose of this letter is also to warn you of the
effect of a successful application for dégrèvement/
réalisation, so that you may take immediate legal
advice in relation to this matter, as there may be alternative options
available to you that the Royal Court may order, in particular a declaration of
(bankruptcy) or a remise de biens. The Viscount’s Department have published
guides on Désastre,
Remise and Dégrèvement,
explaining the concepts and how to apply for them, copies of which are
available on their website at www.gov.je/viscount
or on request in writing to the Viscount. You should consider whether these
alternatives may be more appropriate for your financial situation. Notice is given of the date and time we
will be making this application so that you can attend Court if you wish to
make such representations as you think fit.
In summary, if the renunciation application is granted, the
Royal Court will order a dégrèvement
of any immovable property i.e. land or buildings in your name. The court may also order a realisation
of any movable property which is the remainder of your property which is not
land or buildings.
Following an order for renunciation, two Advocates or
Solicitors will be appointed by the Royal Court to be Attournés, and they will
have possession and care of all of your property from the date of the order.
They will carry out all of the procedural steps, including the publication of
Notices in the Jersey Gazette, that lead up to the dégrèvement
hearing, which will be held 4-6 weeks after the renunciation is ordered. At
this hearing one of your creditors will become the legal owner of your
immovable property. You will no longer have any rights in relation to the
property, and can no longer reside there. Should you refuse to leave, further
eviction proceedings will be commenced against you. Your other possessions or
property apart from land may also be disposed of.
When the dégrèvement process has been completed, you
remain liable for any unpaid debts that existed before the procedure (unlike in
or a successful remise de biens where the conclusion of the procedure grants you
a discharge from your debts).
You are urged to take legal advice on your position as soon
[Applicant creditors legal advisers]