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I have c tax arrears from 2 previous propertys. (Due to unforseen circumstances, I had to sell my house as I got into financial hardship!).


1. £459.43


= £1043.87


I made an arrangment to pay an amount per month for my c tax. I found I could not afford this. I had a letter from them saying I agreed to pay an amount for both every month til debt was paid. This agreement was over the phone and to Phoenix. Which amounted to £1128.87. £85 fee added by Phoenix.


I have received 2 letters from Phoenix Commercial Collections, (1 letter each per property) saying to pay in full to avoid bailiffs.


1 for £506.93 and 1 for £636.94 = £1143.87 £15 added on by Phoenix.



They now want full payment or they will come and take my car and goods.


My car is parked away, (I also need my car for work, as I attend peoples houses, can they take my car if I need it for work??)


I read that I should wright to the council and offer an affordable amount. Should I wright to Phoenix as well??

Anything else i should do??


Thanks for any help x x x

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Your situation is not a lot different to mine.


Keep the car away from the property, and make sure there is nothing outside your home upon with they can "levy". This includes garden furniture, lawnmowers etc.


1 for £506.93 and 1 for £636.94 = £1143.87 £15 added on by Phoenix.



As I understand it, they are only allowed to charge for visits. I am not sure where this rule can be found though. I suspect the other £85 is not legit either.


They now want full payment or they will come and take my car and goods.



Tell them to get lost. As long as they do not get a levy on anything and you do not let them into your property, their powers are virtually nil. Thet can enter your property through open windows and what not (to gain "peaceable entry"). Realistically, they do not want your possessions; they want to scare you, bully you and intimidate you in order that they can bleed you dry. Do not let them.


Remember, you owe the Council the money, not the Bailiff company. The Bailiffs work for the Council.


I read that I should wright to the council and offer an affordable amount. Should I wright to Phoenix as well??

Anything else i should do??


Draw up a proper income and expenditure schedule, ensuring you deal with Priority Debts and things like that first. There should be templates on this site somewhere.


Then start making payments


There are differing views on this, but I would be tempted to deal with the Council direct. They will likely try to refuse, but persist.


I have started paying the Council direct, but this course of action does require doing properly - because you may pay all you owe to the council, but the Bailiff still wants his fees, and you could well end up thinking you have paid the debt, but there will be outstanding charges that make up part of the liability order, and they could well end up chasing you for the £24.50 + £18.00 fees for a visit. Then if they get a levy, whicjh they will try to do, you will end up with a load more fees and stress.


Make sure your Income and Expenditure is accurate, get a copy off the the Council with your proposals. I would say just ignore the Bailiffs, as I am doing, in the hope that they return it to the Council saying they couldn't get any money out of you. At that point, as long as you are paying the Council, there is little else they can do. They cannot take what you do not have.


I have also found that reminding the people at the Council that the Bailiffs are their subcontractors, and that you will therefore hold the Council accountable for their subcontractors actions.


A thug of a Bailiff has little to lose by bullying you and intimidating you - but has plenty to gain.


The person at the Council has a job for life with a copper bottomed pension, and therefore has a lot more to lose, and nothing really to gain.


Telling the Council you will hold THEM accountable should make them pay a little more attention if nothing else. This si work in progress for me right now!


They are my thoughts for what they are worth, and I am sure others will have their own musings as well.


I have realised that my situation will take time to resolve, and so will yours, but I do not think there is a quick fix, sadly.



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Guest Happy Contrails

£15 added on by Phoenix.


Something not right there. The law prescribing bailiffs fees for collecting unpaid council tax is the Council Tax (Administration and Enforcement) Regulations 1992 and provides £24.00 for a first visit and £18.00 for a second visit if one is made. No other bailiff's fees can lawfully be charged if a bailiff has not moved your goods in a vehicle and you have not signed any document consenting to a levy or a walking possessions agreement (currently a flat rate of £10).


Send this lettter to the bailiffs and it should clear up the fee irregularity.


The Omnipotent Bailiff Co, Plc

Their Address 1

Their Address 2

Their Address 3





Dear Sir/Madam


Re: [YOUR NAME + REF]: Fee irregularities. Opportunity to compensate


I write following visits by your bailiff however there appears to be irregularities with your fees. I ask you to provide the following within fourteen (14) days:


1) The name of the certificating court and certificate number for the bailiff in charge


2) Written confirmation of a) your fees, and b) the original debt


3) Truthfully confirm in writing your fees are lawful and comply with legislation


4) The name and address of the person or body you act for



If an irregularity with your fees is later discovered within the statutory time limit of 6 years as prescribed under Section 2 of the Limitation Act 1980, I will enter no further correspondence with you and automatically file a Form 4 at court for dishonestly defrauding me with your fees. This may also involve a criminal investigation by police and your bailiff and firm's director(s) may receive a criminal record for assisting an offender, benefiting from proceeds of crime and committing offences under the Fraud Act 2006.


This document is delivered by Royal Mail and I deem it good service upon you by the ordinary course of post under Section 7 of the Interpretation Act 1978. It is your responsibility and in your best interests this letter is handed to the relevant person within your organisation.


Yours Sincerely



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I sent a letter to the council with a payment and an offer of payments. I sent a letter to the bailiffs. I have now received two letters by hand from the bailiffs saying they are coming back tomorrow to remove my belongings. I will be at work, but what do I do now?? Not heard from the council. Need my car for work!

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Guest Happy Contrails

Phone the council, tell them their bailiff has been caught cheating with his fees and commits an offence under Section 2 and 4 of the Fraud Act 2006 and ask they take the council tax debt back into town hall administration. remind ther council they are liable for their bailiffs when they are caught defrauding a member of the public. If the council is uncooperative or vexatious then quickly contact the local government ombudsman. Heres the standard advice for dealing with bailiffs at the door and hand a copy of the above letter to the bailiff through a window then take a photo of the bailiff standing outside reading it. You will need it as proof of delivery.





1. ALWAYS! Keep your door LOCKED SHUT at all times. NEVER open the door to a bailiff - speak through a window or letterbox

2. ALWAYS! Hide your car - in the garage or park it well away

3. ALWAYS! Take a photo of the bailiff and his vehicle (better still use a video camcorder) and record everything

4. ALWAYS! Speak as little as possible to the bailiff

5. ALWAYS! Ask for his bailiff's certificate number

6. ALWAYS! Ask which court issued his certificate

7. ALWAYS! Ask for a full breakdown of his fees IN WRITING

8. ALWAYS! Ask who the creditor is (if you don't know)

9. ALWAYS! Pay using a credit card, avoid cash and debit cards if possible

10. ALWAYS! If you have grounds, get an appeal lodged immediately (parking tickets) - it stops enforcement


1. NEVER! Sign any documents handed to you by a bailiff

2. NEVER! Phone a bailiff (unless asking him which Court issued his certificate)

3. NEVER! Admit any debt

4. NEVER! Say or "confirm" your name address or date of birth


If you feel intimidated or threatened by a bailiff, call police on 999. Remember that door remains LOCKED SHUT until the bailiff is a safe distance from your property. You DO NOT have to open the door to police. If possible get EVERYTHING on video, it can be used in court: Example: YouTube - Rossendales Bailiffs

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I sent a letter recorded delivery with an offer of payment to the council last week. With a copy of the letter I sent to the bailiffs re: charges. I will more than likely be at work tomorrow-I work from 7am til 10pm. Am a bit suspicious of telephoning as no evidence. Letters are better. I know its urgent, but he aint getting in, and I will be at work with my car.


I was told that as long as I show willing to pay, there is not alot they can do. And have sent some money to the council. x Thanks for your help

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