If you do not pay your council tax, legal recovery action may be taken to get the money you owe.
If you cannot afford the payments that are shown on your council tax bill, you should contact us. You may be entitled to exemptions, discounts or reductions that would reduce the amount you pay.
You can choose to pay the full amount all at once or by instalments. You can also spread your payments over 12 months instead of the usual 10 to reduce the amount you are asked to pay on each bill.
Have you fallen behind with your payments?
If you have had a reminder letter from us because you have not paid your council tax bill, you can:
- make payment of the outstanding amount to bring your account up to date
- request that your instalments are rearranged to make them more manageable
Submit your requests to us on this pre-summons arrangement form.
Have you had a final notice?
Your council tax is now overdue and the amount due for the rest of the year is payable. You should make payment of the full amount on the notice to avoid further action.
If you cannot afford the full payment on the notice, please contact us ahead of the hearing date to discuss a payment plan.
If the payment is not made, we will obtain a summons to get the money owed.
Have you had a summons for a court hearing?
You should either:
- make payment of the full amount of the notice before the court hearing to avoid further action and additional costs
- pay the instalment on the court summons to accept the arrangement suggested on the letter
If you are unable to make payment in full or comply with the instalment plan on the court summons by the specified date, submit your payment proposal using our special payment arrangement form.
For council tax arrears, to complete this form you will need:
- council tax reference number
- council tax property address
- your name and contact address (if different to the council tax property)
- telephone number or email address
- your National Insurance Number
- employment details including payroll number (or business name if self-employed)
- benefit details where applicable
- bank details (if making payment by Direct Debit)
- start date for payments
Your account reference number is shown on the summons. If you no longer have this, you can request a copy bill online.
If you feel you are unable to clear your arrears within the current financial year, contact us.
If you don't make a payment or a payment arrangement, we may:
- pass your debt to an Enforcement Agent for collection
- deduct money from your wages
- deduct money from your Benefit entitlement
- make you bankrupt or apply for a charge against your property
Enforcement agents, sometimes called bailiffs, are employed in appropriate cases of non-payment of monies due to the council.
Enforcement agents are instructed to collect the debt outstanding where a liability order has been obtained through the Magistrates Court and all other efforts to collect the debt have failed. Enforcement agents collect their costs directly from the charge payer and therefore the amount payable can be greatly increased.
Anyone experiencing difficulty paying their bill should contact us before the matter reaches this stage.