If your Council Tax payment is late you will receive a reminder shortly after the due date. A maximum of two reminders will be issued in any financial year after which you may lose your right to pay by instalments. You would then have to pay the balance owed for the remainder of the year at once.
A second reminder will only be issued where you have complied with the terms of payment contained in the first reminder but you then did not pay a further instalment on the due date.
Reminders require payments to be brought up to date within seven days. If you do not, you lose your right to instalments and you will have to pay the full amount due for the rest of the year all in one lump sum payment. We take legal action against those who do not pay.
If we do have to take action a summons will be issued and then we will make an application for a liability order at Staines Magistrates' Court. This will entitle us to
- instruct an enforcement agent to recover the debt
- order an employer to make deductions from your earnings
- apply for part of any Income Support, Job Seekers Allowance or Universal Credit to be paid direct to us
- start bankruptcy proceedings
- make a charge upon your home.
We may also apply for you to be committed to prison for up to three months if the reason for non-payment is wilful refusal or culpable neglect.
Council tax enforcement
From the 6 April 2014 the Council can instruct an Enforcement Agent (formerly a Bailiff) to collect an outstanding Council tax debt from you if a Liability Order has been granted.
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