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MATTYFEZ

CT summons for l,ate payment by 2 days

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Hi all,

 

Ive just had a summons through as I've not paid this months payment yet (September), its only the 2nd today, and I dont get paid until the 12th-ish if im lucky.

 

I have had a previous warning, followed by a demand for the full ammount.

I only settled what I owed according to the instalments at this point, due to cash flow problems, had to pay £1000 for an engine rebuild on my car (no excuse I realise) but I'm basicly fully up to date.

 

Just wondering what my options are - I know theres not much leeway with council tax but to pay the reamaining years amount plus £60 costs to keep it out of court is seriously going to break me financialy until at least christmas, not to mention cause late payments oand nasty letters for other bills.

 

Is there any way I can persuade them to carry on with the instalments, or at worst, pay the outstanding and get rid of the costs? technically I'm only 2 days in arrears, I know how strict the rules are once a final warning has been issued but it dosent seem right.:|

 

Any advice welcome, thanks

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Hi Mattyfez,

 

Firstly, what is the date on the summons? Are you definitely sure that it was issued because you missed September's payment, and not August's? Reason I ask is that the council usually wait about 10-14 days before issuing reminder notices because they need to allow a reasonable amount of time for payments to reach them - expecting everyone's payments to be showing on their accounts on the 1st is ridiculous for various reasons I shan't bore you with. If you aren't sure or it is definitely referring to September's payment then I think you need to query that because it seems very wrong.

 

As for paying it off you have two options:

1: Pay the balance of the summons (including costs) in full. This will prevent it from going to court and thus prevent you from being issued with further court costs. Your account will be paid up for the year meaning you don't owe them anything else until 1st April 2011.

2: Let it go to court and once the council have obtained a liability order you can make an arrangement with them to pay it off. Unfortunately this will incur additional costs, usually another lot of however much was on the summons (in your case £60). You'll probably have to provide them with details of your incomings and outgoings so that you can come to an agreement about how much you can pay each week/fornight/month (you should be able to choose the frequency and date of the payments). This arrangement will be much more strict than your previous payment plan so it will be imperative payments are received by them by the agreed date. If you default from that plan they reserve the right to issue further action against you such as attachment of earnings or bailiffs.

 

As for the court costs, unless there is a valid reason why the summons should not have been issued - such as an error at their end - then they will still stand and you'll have to pay them unfortunately.

 

A suggestion that I made to menigma in a post below regarding payment: as you don't get paid until the middle of the month, starting from next year pay your CT in advance. When you get your annual bill in March pay April's instalment with your March pay packet, and May's instalment with Aprils' pay, and so on. This will mean that you should be able to avoid any recovery action next year because you are paying it way in advance.

 

Hope that helps. If you have any more questions please fire away :)

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Hi,

 

Thanks so much for the reply,

 

To answer your questions:

 

Are you definitely sure that it was issued because you missed September's payment, and not August's?

Ive noted down references of all the online payments as I've gone along, april, may june, july, and august all paid up, september is outstanding.

 

I live on my own in a cheap house, so my bill is £74.91 folllowed by 9 x £70

 

April payment -on april 12th

May payment - on 2nd June

June and July payment - on July 17th (two payments to bring me back up to date)

Aug payment on 20th August

September - not paid yet

 

Stop Press: I've just figured out looking at my recipts, I only paid £120 in July instead of £140, thats where the arrears has come from, i've basically been £20 in debt since July 17th.:|

I ignored the last warning letter as it didnt mention this, it just mentioned that I was late paying, so I assumed it crossed over in the post after I had paid the normal instalment in August.

 

Oh well, I guess I'm stuffed and will have to cough up the £430 for the remainder of year and the £60 costs:| this will be fun.... looks like my gas/elec company is going to have to wait a while...

 

Thanks anyway, I think I will take your advice and try to pay in advance next year, so at least theres a buffer if I miss an instalment.

Edited by MATTYFEZ

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You're welcome :) A little bit of a bonus of paying it all off now means that you don't have to worry about paying it again for another 6 months :/ not much consolation.

 

Without knowing when they've issued the reminders it's obviously difficult to say, but May and June were definitely late, probably July and August too, I reckon April's just made it in on time.

 

Unfortunately there's not much leeway, like you said. If your utility companies start getting shirty it might work to your advantage to tell them that you had this big CT bill to pay - it's a priority debt because of the fact that it's a tax and one of few debts you can be imprisoned for. I don't know if this is likely to change anything with them but there's probably no harm in mentioning it.

 

As for next year maybe set up a standing order (not direct debit) if you're comfortable with doing that. At least that way you know the correct amount is being paid (so long as the correct amount is on the form!), and that it's being paid at the same time each month.

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