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Advice appreciated: 3 Council Tax Liability Orders and Bailiff visit - I have bipolar

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My situation is this: I was diagnosed as bipolar a long time ago. I now work part-time (18 hours) but in the past I claimed Incapacity benefit, housing and council tax benefits from Hackney Council.


I moved from Hackney in 2006. Before Christmas I was sent notice of historic LOs for council tax for 2004, 2005 and 2006 - the council tax was due in those years I think.


Because my mental health is an enduring issue I live in a pretty bad state of disorganisation and I didn't open the letters about the enforcement of the LOs until last week, which is also when the bailiff for Chandlers arrived - only posting a letter - with the three LOs and adding £24.50 per order (despite only making one visit - is this permissible?).


I have read the forums over the weekend and this morning sent an email to the council identifying myself as a vulnerable person because of my mental health and asking that they take the case back from the bailiffs. I have documentary evidence of my mental health status.


I have not contacted the bailiffs, and because they will have seen my old banger outside my house when they visited I have parked it away from the house. Should I also send a recorded delivery letter to them as well as contacting the council, so they are aware of my mental health diagnosis.


How I owe the money I don't know - I thought I was on full CTB for Incapacity Benefit. Maybe I wasn't. My mental health means I am not always on top of things, and it affects my memory adversely. I am hoping I can find some paperwork relating to that period - but as it is between 8 and 6 years ago I don't hold out much hope.


Any advice appreciated. I am quite focused on staying well and getting to work and am trying not to melt down which is why I avoid the telephone - it's like a red rag to a bull to me.

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You MUST contact the council, and ask them

How many liability orders they have for you

What Years they apply to

When were they obtained

How much are they for

When were they passed to the bailiff for action


make sure you send copies of your vulnerability to both the council and Chandlers, the one to chandlers reqquesting they return your account as you are vulnerable


Don't worry you have read up on this forum, so you know not to let them in. If it distressses you don't open the door, and avoid contact with the bailiff.


When you have the info from the council, you can post up details and Caggers can help further.


Try not to worry, others will be along to help you further soon

We could do with some help from you.



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The bailiff: A 12th Century solution re-branded as Enforcement Agents for the 21st Century to seize and sell debtors goods as before Oh so Dickensian!

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here is an old msg i always post:


As this debt is for outstanding council tax from 2007, it is no longer a priority debt as such and is now classified as "priority arrrears". So the bailiff can go swivel!!!!

I was in a similar situation but owing £1,200 for council tax from 6 yrs ago. (I was refused council tax benefit whilst I was unable to work through illness and on Income Support for 8 months but the council refused to apply CTB retrospectively - unknown to me because I had moved - my application for CTB had been incomplete.)

i refused to co-operate further with the bailiffs (Rossies) after their threat level had escalated to ridiculous heights and instead told the council how much I could afford to pay them after taking into consideration my priority household expenses and debts, then my priority debts and then my credit debt. (I worked out what I could afford with the National Debtline I&E form - I believe CAG has a good one as well) I would only correspond by e-mail to the Head of Revenues and I told him I would pay £12.50/month. I considered that to be a realistic and sustainable amount. It was accepted even though it will take 8 years to repay.

As suggested above, advise the council of your "vulnerable" status and dig your heels in! The council will eventually take back your debt and you can then repay them what is realistic and sustainable for you. Stress to them that it is in their benefit to help you by allowing you to repay at an amount you can afford - without defaulting - whilst still paying your current council liablility if you have one.

At the time I negotiated my repayment to the council, I was employed on a full-time basis and had no dependent children and was not considered vulnerable, so if I could do it, you can too!! If you're in receipt of the "appropriate" benefits, they will only deduct a small amount each week/month and then you will be fine.

Best of Luck and don't lose heart!






you are correct you are vunerable


i would phone the council and state that you were clearly on all the benefits and that it should have been paid already


confirm with them that they do see oyu as vunerable.


should sort it out.



please don't hit Quote...just type we know what we said earlier..

DCA's view debtors as suckers, marks and mugs

NO DCA has ANY legal powers whatsoever on ANY debt no matter what it's Type

and they

are NOT and can NEVER  be BAILIFFS. even if a debt has been to court..

If everyone stopped blindly paying DCA's Tomorrow, their industry would collapse overnight... 

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That is normal for a fee to be added to each L/O despite only one visit.

Do not sign anything from a bailiffs ever

the bailiffs have no real powers they can not force entry

The use of bailiffs is the first step for councils to recover money if the bailiffs are not able to do so it gets handed back to the council.

I would suggest that you would fall into the vulnerable category.

I would write to the council about the situation about CTB if you phone them they will probably tell you to deal direct with the bailiffs.

If the bailiffs does come back make sure all doors and window are secure and if they knock ignore the door(that is just what I have done in the past)

If i have helped in any way hit my star.

any advice given is based on experience and learnt from this site :-)

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Others beat me to it :)

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Thank you for the advice and support so quickly. I will do as suggested - have to work through things step-by-step.


Letters to council and bailiff firm look like today's priority. The paperwork I have so far is:


3 notices of impending enforcement action for council tax Los - all dated 21 November 2011


1) on 22 June 2004 an LO was granted against you @ Thames Magistrates for the amount of £430.51 incl costs - the current balance outstanding is £182.94

2)on 7 June 2005 as above etc. .. amount of £424.77 incl costs - the current balance outstanding is £203.79

3) on 8 August 2006 as above amount of £214.09 - the current balance outstanding is £172.33


These balances outstanding are a mystery to me. I can only think I got part CTB but I am very confused!



(I know I have mis placed the first correspondence from the council received late last year - I can't find it anywhere at the moment)


I don't know when they were passed to the bailiff - suspect beginning of the year. I have moved since but I was at the property at the dates in question!

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