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What happens if you do not pay your Council Tax

Recovery of unpaid Council Tax

Council Tax is a contribution towards providing vital frontline services for the whole community. 

The law says you must pay your Council Tax by the due date. If you fail to pay, we will take action to recover what you owe.

If you cannot afford to pay your bill, you can view more information on problems playing your Council Tax to find out what help is available, or you can complete a general enquiry form. We may be able to help.

It can take several days for payments to reach us, so please allow enough time to make sure each payment is with us by the date it becomes due. 

If you have received a reminder or final notice because you have forgotten to pay your instalment why not set up a Direct Debit to pay your Council Tax.

View more information on how to pay your Council Tax.

Set up Direct Debit

 

Late or missed Council Tax payments

You have missed a payment (first reminder)

If you fail to pay, or if you fall behind with your payments, we will send you a reminder notice giving you 14 days to bring your account up to date.

If you bring your account up to date your instalments will continue as normal. If you do not pay, a summons will be issued and costs of £51 added to your Council Tax account.

Pay Council Tax Set up Direct Debit

You can request a different payment plan/date if this will help with your payments. You will need to set up an online Council Tax account to do this.

Set up your own payment plan

 

You have missed 2 payments (second reminder)

If you bring your account up to date and fall behind again, we will send you a second reminder notice giving you 14 days to bring your account up to date.

If you bring your account up to date your instalments will continue as normal. If you do not pay, a summons will be issued and costs of £51 added to your Council Tax account.

Pay Council Tax Set up Direct Debit

You can request a different payment plan/date if this will help with your payments. You will need to set up an online Council Tax account to do this.

Set up your own payment plan

 

You fail to pay a third time (final notice)

If you fall behind a third time in the same financial year (1 April to 31 March), we will issue a final notice and you will lose the right to make future payments by instalments. If this happens you must then pay the full year's balance within 14 days. 

If the full year's Council Tax has become due and is not paid within 14 days' we will issue a summons and costs of £51 will be added to your account.

Whilst you have now lost your right to pay by instalments, it may be possible to reinstate your instalments provided you bring your payments up to date and agree to pay any future instalments by Direct Debit.

Alternatively, you can request a different payment plan/date if this will help with your payments. This would also be payable by Direct Debit. You will need to set up an online Council Tax account to do this.
 

Set up your own payment plan Set up Direct Debit

 

Experiencing financial difficulty

If you are experiencing financial difficulty, you can view information on financial advice available with organisations that may be able to help by giving you independent advice.

 

Further action

If a summons is issued and a Liability Order is granted for non-payment of your Council Tax, we can take various actions to recover your debt.

Summons and Liability Order hearings

Council Tax enforcement (bailiffs)

Deductions from your benefits

Deductions from your earnings

Bankruptcy and Charging Orders

Prison

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