In Scotland, enforcement agents are known as 'sheriff officers'. Sheriff officers are legally authorised individuals who work on behalf of the courts to serve courts orders. This includes:
- recovering an outstanding debt
- repossessing goods
- carrying out the eviction of a tenant
- removing or detaining someone from a property (eg a child that has been abused)
- ensuring that important (legal) papers are served
Sheriff officers can be instructed by private individuals, companies, lawyers, local authorities and government departments.
Court officers acting for the Court of Sessions (also known as ‘Messengers-at-Arms’) have similar powers to enforce orders granted by the Court of Sessions. Messengers-at-Arms are also always sheriff officers.