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Hi all

Is it not correct that a council has a LEGAL DUTY to COLLECT TAX so how can it "REFUSE" to accept payments when offered.

 

Since payment HAS been offered what is the validity of a "Liability Order" -- how for example can people (Bailiff's) actually charge a Levy against money owed to a Council when the money has been REFUSED by the same Council. -- surely the Law has it's knickers totally in a twist here.

 

In any case don't the council have to send out a Liability Order first if they want to use Bailiff's.

 

I'm no legal eagle - but the duty of the Council is to collect the TAX - and not be lining the pockets of 3rd parties so aren't they LEGALLY REQUIRED to accept payment.

 

Hopefully some good Lawyer here will unearth some obscure clause which says that in the case of a DECENT offer of payment (and I offered over 50% of the arrears) a COUNCIL MUST TAKE THE PAYMENT.

 

Please can someone clear up the whole situation in these cases.

 

I'm aware in any case that one doesn't have to deal with the Bailiff's - so presumably the TAX bill goes back to the council anyway - so why on Earth don't they just take a better deal when it's on the table instead of going the last mile with the Bailiff's by which time people might have been able to get Council Tax benefit in any case -- so they've DOUBLY lost out.

 

Sometimes the Law seems an ASS -- in this case it seems like a whole STABLEFUL of ASSES.

 

Please anybody - Clarification if poss.

Cheers

jimbo

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Guest Old_andrew2018

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Altho I don`t know if they can or can`t refuse payment, an interesting fact has come to light in my own case. I have found out over the weekend that our Council use`s an outside company called Capita to handle all of their Concil Tax affairs, collection of tax etc. When I had my own issue with a bailiff claiming over £200 in additional fee`s , I called the "council" , who were in fact Capita, and I was told that I had paid all of my council tax, however I still had to pay the bailiff fee`s direct to the bailiff altho I had paid the origional debt direct to the council. I have since found out that Capita seem to have a link with Equita , the bailiff concerened so it would be in Capita`s interest to enforce the bailiff fee`s. In your case it may be a similar set up which would be why they want to keep the debt with the bailiff.

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Altho I don`t know if they can or can`t refuse payment, an interesting fact has come to light in my own case. I have found out over the weekend that our Council use`s an outside company called Capita to handle all of their Concil Tax affairs, collection of tax etc. When I had my own issue with a bailiff claiming over £200 in additional fee`s , I called the "council" , who were in fact Capita, and I was told that I had paid all of my council tax, however I still had to pay the bailiff fee`s direct to the bailiff altho I had paid the origional debt direct to the council. I have since found out that Capita seem to have a link with Equita , the bailiff concerened so it would be in Capita`s interest to enforce the bailiff fee`s. In your case it may be a similar set up which would be why they want to keep the debt with the bailiff.

 

It is a very crazy situation but a huge number of local authorities use Capita to manage the payment of council tax and yet many local authorities use Equita Ltd who are WHOLLY OWNED by Capita !!

 

In fact, I understand that in many cases when you think that you are telephoning the council tax department...you are actually being diverted to CAPITA !!!

 

Try to work that one out !!

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I wonder if there could be any legal case to answer possibly as direct conflict of interest ? It is a bizare situation and one that can only compound this issue of paying the council direct

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the council's very often let companies such as Capita (Liberata, Vertex etc) appoint the bailiffs so the contract is with them and not the council. Naturally Capita will always appoint Equita

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Advice to all - where possible, go to the actual COUNCIL office

 

Thats what I do

 

That way I see a COUNCIL employee who has no vested interest in giving me BS


omnia praesumuntur legitime facta donec probetur in contrarium

 

 

Please note: I am not a member of the legal profession, all advice given is purely my opinion, if in doubt consult a professional

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I know that many councils will not deal with the debtor once it is passed to the bailiffs.

 

I agree with what you're saying, HCE, this is often an initial stance. But is there anything in law to state they can't? I suspect not - but don't know hence the question. [Genuine, not 'lets hit the bailiff with a pigs bladder' type question]. My impression is that stance is more procedural and it's the easiest answer to give. Or perhaps it forms part of a council / bailiff contract. But is there any real legal basis to this position? Curious.

 

Also curious about what's been said about possible conflict of interest. That a council farms out ct handling is rotten enough, that it is farmed out to a company that owns bailiff companies stinks higher than a pair of students socks...

 

Rae

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Another one I will be watching with interest.

 

I have square eyes from reading because although I have manned my Barricades so to speak, I would rather stop Mr Bailiff from calling again.

 

The following is part of Local Government Finance Act and there is very similiar stated in Council Tax (admin and enforcment thing)

 

17) 1 Regulations under paragraph1 (1) above many provide that in case where

 

(a) proceedings under the regulations have been taken as regards the receovery of any sum mentioned in 1(1) above and

 

(b) the outstanding amount is paid or tendered to the authority to which it is payable:

 

the authority shall accept the amount, no further steps shall be taken as regards it's recovery, and any person committed to prison in pursuance of the proceedings shall be released.

 

2) the outstanding amount is an amount equal to the sum concerned or to so much of it as remains outstanding (as the case may be)

 

3) in a case where costs and charges are relevant the outstanding amount shall be treated as augmented by a sum (of a prescribed amount or an amount determined in accordance with precribed rule) in respect of cost and charges incurred in the proceedings up to the time of payment or tender.

 

Can anyone explain this in plain english?

 

To me that reads if I pay in full or offer payment then they have to call off the dogs but I will have to pay the Bailiff fees.

 

In my particular case (hello again Jimbo :D) we have had one letter through the door, immediatley contacted council and made offer, they said they would accept payments but would not call off the bailiff. I have made first payment and sent letter to council confirming my offer and have written to Bailiff saying I will only pay council.

 

I havent attempted to use there own regs against them yet as I am waiting for the council to say no first but as I have 3 young children who dont deserve to be harrassed in their own home, I will try anything that may have success.

Edited by crockie
my spelling is terrible as I am feding the baby

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I agree with what you're saying, HCE, this is often an initial stance. But is there anything in law to state they can't? I suspect not - but don't know hence the question. [Genuine, not 'lets hit the bailiff with a pigs bladder' type question]. My impression is that stance is more procedural and it's the easiest answer to give. Or perhaps it forms part of a council / bailiff contract. But is there any real legal basis to this position? Curious.

 

Also curious about what's been said about possible conflict of interest. That a council farms out ct handling is rotten enough, that it is farmed out to a company that owns bailiff companies stinks higher than a pair of students socks...

 

Rae

 

It is purely a procedural decision but an understandable one. The debtor is given every chance to pay and/or make arrangements to resolve the debt. It is only when Bailiffs are instructed that it is taken seriously and they then try to take it back a step. That may sound harsh, but for the majority of cases I see, it's true.

 

If the councils didnt farm out CT handling, nationally they would lose millions. Then the public are all to quick to bash them for cuts...

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The debtor is given every chance to pay and/or make arrangements to resolve the debt.

 

This is untrue, at least in my local area. Once an installment is missed a liability order is obtained for the whole year and bailiffs sent in as a first resort, regardless of ability to pay.

 

I cannot see how a council can refuse payment. The power to use distress comes from The Council Tax (Administration and Enforcement) Regulations 1992 as amended. Regulation 45 gives the council the power to levy the distess; the bailiffs are the alter ego/agents of the council. It also states that they shall accept payment at any time, although it does also say this must include charges as well.


Post by me are intended as a discussion of the issues involved, as these are of general interest to me and others on the forum. Although it is hoped such discussion will be of use to readers, before exposing yourself to risk of loss you should not rely on any principles discussed without confirming the situation with a qualified person.

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This is untrue, at least in my local area. Once an installment is missed a liability order is obtained for the whole year and bailiffs sent in as a first resort, regardless of ability to pay.

 

Same here. We have received one letter refusing our offer, letter to say applying for liability order, liability order, nothing then for 6 months untill Bailiffs arrive at our door.

 

I cannot see how a council can refuse payment. The power to use distress comes from The Council Tax (Administration and Enforcement) Regulations 1992 as amended. Regulation 45 gives the council the power to levy the distess; the bailiffs are the alter ego/agents of the council. It also states that they shall accept payment at any time, although it does also say this must include charges as well.

 

See my post above, I dont understand if this only applies if you are paying the full amount or if offering to pay in installments. Our councils representative have said that they will accept payments from us and we have started making payments however they will not call off the bailiffs untill it is paid in full.

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Hi all

Is it not correct that a council has a LEGAL DUTY to COLLECT TAX so how can it "REFUSE" to accept payments when offered.

 

You have attempted to discharge your liability but the council is stopping you from doing so.

 

There is no law obligating you to trade with a bailiff, only pay the council what you owe. You are perfectly entitled to keep bailiffs out of your home and not communicate with them.

 

Write to the council, simple letter, telling them you attempted to discharge liability but they prevented you from doing so. The law does not obligate you to communicate with a bailiff or trade with him. Ask the council contact you when their bailiff has returned the case uncollected back to the council and ready to accept a reasonable payment from you.


The next generation Nintendo Wii - the Nintendo Puu

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