Jump to content

You can now change your notification sounds by going to this link https://www.consumeractiongroup.co.uk/index.php?/&app=soundboard&module=soundboard&controller=managesounds

 

You can find a library of free notification sounds in several places on the Internet. Here's one which has a very large selection https://notificationsounds.com/notification-sounds

 

 

BankFodder BankFodder

 

BankFodder BankFodder


tomtubby

Reverend Paul Nicolson has local authorities really worried as he is "willfully refusing" to pay his council tax ! -WON

style="text-align:center;"> Please note that this topic has not had any new posts for the last 1887 days.

If you are trying to post a different story then you should start your own new thread. Posting on this thread is likely to mean that you won't get the help and advice that you need.

If you are trying to post information which is relevant to the story in this thread then please flag it up to the site team and they will allow you to post.

Thank you

Recommended Posts

This is a story that is getting a huge amount of media publicity ( a simple Google search of his name is all that is needed)

 

The Reverend is in his 80’s and he is refusing to pay his council tax in order to highlight the plight of benefit claimants affected by the Benefit Cap and the abolition of Council Tax Benefit that he believes is destroying his community. These changes coming on top of the dreadful ‘bedroom tax”.

 

His local authority (Haringey) has obtained a Liability Order order against him for over £1,000 to include “costs” of £125 and he has already appeared in court and advised the Magistrate that he is "willfully refusing" to pay his council tax and that if necessary; he will go to prison.

 

Fifteen years ago Rev Paul Nicolson founded the Zacchaeus 2000 Trust (Z2K), to support debtors impoverished by the benefit system in court. He left Z2K earlier this year to run Taxpayers Against Poverty.

 

There has been a great deal of publicity concerning the Reverend’s refusal to pay his council tax and interestingly, the Haringey Independent’s annual web figures released this week show that more than 2,200 people read the story via a link on Facebook making it their most read story for 2013.

 

I assume that the publicity will ensure a good attendance on 6th January 2014 when the Reverend is appealing for anyone who has received a nasty letter from the council or threats from bailiffs to attend a public meeting on Tottenham. Details can be found on the Taxpayers Against Poverty website.

 

http://www.taxpayersagainstpoverty.org.uk/council-tax-enforcement-bailiffs-cannot-pay/#more-930

 

 

PS: Reverend Nicolson was the original “Vicar of Dibley”.

 

He is also a member of the Enforcement Law Reform Group. I have met him on many occasions over the past 6 or 7 years and he is passionate about the plight of impoverished debtors on benefits and has spent over 30 years assisting them.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Secondly, Rev Paul Nicolson is also asking for a inquiry to be raised on the matter of the ‘summons cost” that is charged to debtors when a local authority obtain a Liability Order. In his case Haringey Council have charged £125 as ”summons costs”.

 

The statutory regulations allow that the amount of the Liability Order will include the amount due to the council by way of unpaid council tax together with the “complainants (local authority) costs” . Included in the local authorities “costs” will be the admin fee of £3 which is charged to the council by the Magistrates Court.

 

During his own court hearing on August 2, Rev Nicolson he was advised that the figure of £125 is broken down into costs for the court time and costs reasonably incurred by the council in bringing the case and that the amount was “consistent with other London boroughs"

 

He argued that this was not the case given and that Camden council charged £80 and Bromley £95.

 

He was asked by the magistrate whether he could pay. He replied:I can afford to pay, but why should I pay £125 is my point.”

 

His argument failed to sway the bench. After a brief recess, the Magistrate told him:

 

“We note that you have made a general representation regarding matters of the [£125 cost]. We can only make a decision on the issue of costs that relate to you. Having taken this into consideration we find that you are liable for the costs of £125.”

 

The Reverend advised the Magistrate that he will appeal and if necessary, he will consider a Judicial Review of the system.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The gallant Reverend will have the establishment worried, worried enough to see he meets with an accident NSA/MI6 style? but he makes valid points that IDS and his cronies cannot dispute, as in how making people on already below poverty incomes including people in work, can afford to pay 30% of a bill that was covered previously. Do they eat less as IDS considers then obese? Do the turn off the gas and eat cold food, put on extra clothing anbd shiver in an unheated home? I think IDS expects them to do just that, and the Councils including Haringey look on any reduction of the egregious £125 or whatever they charge as a threat to their (in this case unlawful) revenue generation.


We could do with some help from you.

PLEASE HELP US TO KEEP THIS SITE RUNNING EVERY POUND DONATED WILL HELP US TO KEEP HELPING OTHERS

 

Have we helped you ...?         Please Donate button to the Consumer Action Group

 

If you want advice on your thread please PM me a link to your thread

 

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!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
....He was asked by the magistrate whether he could pay. He replied:I can afford to pay, but why should I pay £125 is my point.”

 

His argument failed to sway the bench. After a brief recess, the Magistrate told him:

 

“We note that you have made a general representation regarding matters of the [£125 cost]. We can only make a decision on the issue of costs that relate to you. Having taken this into consideration we find that you are liable for the costs of £125.”

 

The Reverend advised the Magistrate that he will appeal and if necessary, he will consider a Judicial Review of the system.

 

I wonder if the point the Magistrate was making was that economies of scale could not be factored into the costs calculation? If so, it's like the Post Office telling us that after reviewing its costs it has decided to increase the price of a second class stamp from 50p to £500 because of a change in the way it accounts for the service. Rather than taking an average number of people using the service and splitting the costs, it now charges each customer all the costs as if it were only the individual's letter that was being transported, sorted and delivered.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I should have also mentioned that local authorities are are present VERY WORRIED indeed at the implications that enquiries into "summons costs" will have on them.

 

Many councils rely upon this very substantial 'source of revenue" to balance their budgets and until this recently, they have never had to justify the charge.

 

I can ASSURE you that councils are very concerned at the pressure that they have been under from OUTLAWLA who has done sterling " investigative" work uncovering abuses in this charge. They are also under further pressure from the DCLG report from Eric Pickles earlier this year and now with Reverend Nicolson the subject of 'summons costs' looks set to be investigated.

 

As some may know, with local authorities in Wales there is a Statutory regulation that caps the 'summons and liability order costs' at a MAXIMUM of £70. Why this has not been introduced for the UK is beyond me.

 

PS: Well done to OUTLAWLA !!!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

There is information out there which would be of benefit to the Reverend Paul Nicolson in his case against Haringey Borough Council's fantasy summons costs.

 

For example, Haringey feature in an article published in a local rag highlighting the effects recent benefit reforms have had on the numbers taken to court over council tax liability which reveals categorically that the council unlawfully set summons costs at a level to deter late payment.

"
.....The approach varies on a theme, for example some authorities view setting the penalty at a level that not only enables funding other services, but serves to influence behaviour as Haringey clarified in its
scrutiny panel review
[page 36] of income collection – "
The Review Panel found that other councils had obtained agreement to raise Court Costs recharged to non-payers by a significant level. This charge is intended to act as a deterrent to both late and non-payers
".

In this Freedom of Information request made to Haringey Borough Council, it looks like the Magistrates' court has taken the word of the local authority without any evidence of the costs they claim.

 

One of its responses shows that they supplied a calculation to justify their costs to the Justice's Clerk using misleading figures to claim that they incurred £166.80 but were making a loss by passing only £125 of this on to them.

 

The authority stated that the total number of accounts summonsed in 2010-11 was 18,153 whilst the spreadsheet ("here") indicates that the number of summonses issued in 2010/11 was 23,227 for Council Tax (column 43) and 1,707 for Business rates (column 97) – a total 24,934.

Edited by outlawla

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Excellent response Outlawla.

 

I have sent a link to this thread to the Reverend.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I should have also mentioned that local authorities are are present VERY WORRIED indeed at the implications that enquiries into "summons costs" will have on them. so they damned well should be they should be ashamed.

 

Many councils rely upon this very substantial 'source of revenue" to balance their budgets and until this recently, they have never had to justify the charge. But the charge was NEVER meant to be a primary souece of revenue

I can ASSURE you that councils are very concerned at the pressure that they have been under from OUTLAWLA who has done sterling " investigative" work uncovering abuses in this charge. They are also under further pressure from the DCLG report from Eric Pickles earlier this year and now with Reverend Nicolson the subject of 'summons costs' looks set to be investigated. They will rue the day they crossed the gallant Reverend, and Outlawla

 

As some may know, with local authorities in Wales there is a Statutory regulation that caps the 'summons and liability order costs' at a MAXIMUM of £70. Why this has not been introduced for the UK is beyond me. The Welsh councils don't like it one iota, they would love to rip off hapless debtors as happens in Lloegr (England)

 

PS: Well done to OUTLAWLA !!!

 

I second that TT outlawla has pressed on in spite of the high level apparent conspiracy to keep stuff secret with NELC and Humberside Police, who have truly made themselves into dutti babylon


We could do with some help from you.

PLEASE HELP US TO KEEP THIS SITE RUNNING EVERY POUND DONATED WILL HELP US TO KEEP HELPING OTHERS

 

Have we helped you ...?         Please Donate button to the Consumer Action Group

 

If you want advice on your thread please PM me a link to your thread

 

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!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
An article published in the Haringey Independent seems to be the subject of an awkward looking set of questions being put to HMCTS in a FoI "here..."

This festering boil of council tax enforcement will burst when it ios apparent that councils are loading disproportionate charges and sending bailiffs in to terrorise the newly impoverished workers whose incomes have dropped due to the reforms (more WORKING POOR are on HB and Council Tax benefit than those wholly reliant on benefits ) The new can't pays will be so large in number that HMCS will go under with the extra LOs being sought, and the councils crowing about the increased revenue from t5he exiting costs they now impose on people who cannot afford the council tax let alone the fees will be their undoing.


We could do with some help from you.

PLEASE HELP US TO KEEP THIS SITE RUNNING EVERY POUND DONATED WILL HELP US TO KEEP HELPING OTHERS

 

Have we helped you ...?         Please Donate button to the Consumer Action Group

 

If you want advice on your thread please PM me a link to your thread

 

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!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 

An article published in the Haringey Independent seems to be the subject of an awkward looking set of questions being put to HMCTS in a FoI

 

 

A good FOI but I would expect that the answer will simply be that the amount charged is agreed but the relevant Magistrate Court. I have bookmarked it anyway.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
A good FOI but I would expect that the answer will simply be that the amount charged is agreed but the relevant Magistrate Court. I have bookmarked it anyway.

 

I'm sure they'll not find it too difficult to wriggle out of.

 

There's another article published in the Haringey Independent about the Reverend Paul Nicolson's challenge to the enforcement of Council Tax.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
....As some may know, with local authorities in Wales there is a Statutory regulation that caps the 'summons and liability order costs' at a MAXIMUM of £70. Why this has not been introduced for the UK is beyond me....

 

The amended regulations:

 

Council Tax and Non-Domestic Rating (Amendment) (Wales) Regulations 2011 S.I 2011/528 (W.73), and to go with them, the Explanatory Memorandum

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

outlawla,

 

What a coincidence!!!

 

Only last night I finished writing an report about 'summons costs' and I have referred quite extensively the above Explanatory Memorandum and Regulation.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The Welsh amendment came in useful in these Grounds of Appeal (paragraph 20 & 21) for arguing the case for local authorities having a legal obligation to support their costs.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

outlawla,

 

I have only had a chance to glance through the Grounds for Appeal and will have a good read with a glass of white later this evening !!!

 

My first impression is that this is an EXCELLENT document !!!!

 

The current position is that many local authorities are currently reeling under the pressure of FOI requests and complaints regarding the level of fees charge and this is causing them GREAT CONCERN.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

outlawla,

 

As you will know, until approx 3 years ago, the Magistrates Court charged local authorities a fee of 70p when the court authorised the Liability Order. This court cost was increased to £3 and in the current Consultation on fees (which ends next week) the figure is to remain at £3.

 

The Explanatory Memorandum is one that I have relied upon for the past year or so as it is very easy to understand and clearly confirms the position that when applying for a Summons / Liability Order the local authority are permitted to charge administration costs that they (the local authority) have 'reasonably incurred at both these stages and included these costs will be the court fee of £3 charged by the Magistrate Court to cover the court time etc.

 

There is a website that is known to many on here that encourage debtors to take legal action against local authorities that charge debtors MORE THAN £3 when obtaining a Liability Order. Yet again, debtors should beware of taking 'legal advice' from internet sites.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
....The Explanatory Memorandum is one that I have relied upon for the past year or so as it is very easy to understand and clearly confirms the position that when applying for a Summons / Liability Order the local authority are permitted to charge administration costs that they (the local authority) have 'reasonably incurred at both these stages and included these costs will be the court fee of £3 charged by the Magistrate Court to cover the court time etc.....

The Regulations applying to England, i.e., where there is no cap on costs, make a reasonable distinction between costs which are incurred in respect of instituting the complaint (the summons) and those, for which, if the authority proceed with the application and obtain a liability order, are additional (including the summons costs). However, the Welsh amendment and memorandum make it categorically clear that parliament must have intended there to be provision that if the outstanding debt is settled before the liability order hearing, the costs (summons) should be a lesser sum than if the authority had to obtain the court order.

 

Many local authorities, however, have picked up on the fact that if they front load costs, the additional income it generates is an obvious boost.

 

Where councils do provide a breakdown of costs, you can see how easy it is for them to pull the wool over anyone's eyes who don't really want to bother scrutinising the figures.

Edited by outlawla

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This year promises to be "interesting" to say the least, as to the gallant Reverend, the magistrates prompted by the court clerk will send him down, as they will say the law applies to all. In doing so they will create a martyr and put another nail in the coffin of justice, there is no reason why a common and maximum fee cannot be implemented nationwide in England as in Wales.


We could do with some help from you.

PLEASE HELP US TO KEEP THIS SITE RUNNING EVERY POUND DONATED WILL HELP US TO KEEP HELPING OTHERS

 

Have we helped you ...?         Please Donate button to the Consumer Action Group

 

If you want advice on your thread please PM me a link to your thread

 

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!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

There is incredible pressure now being made for the same regulation to be imposed in the UK.

 

In Wales, the regulations now impose a MAXIMUM amount that may be charged of £70 to debtors to cover the local authorities administration costs for the summons AND liability order stage AND the magistrate court fees.

 

Accordingly, it is perfectly legal for Welsh councils to charge ( for instance) a total sum of £54.37, £42.30 or even £69.95. Funny thing is that some have calculated that their costs come to exactly £70.

 

Very odd !!!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
This year promises to be "interesting" to say the least, as to the gallant Reverend, the magistrates prompted by the court clerk will send him down, as they will say the law applies to all. In doing so they will create a martyr and put another nail in the coffin of justice, there is no reason why a common and maximum fee cannot be implemented nationwide in England as in Wales.

The MAXIMUM charge would only be "remotely justified" for those Welsh authorities issuing relatively LOW numbers of summonses – it has been admitted by councils that economies of scale dictates this. If English regulations were ever subject to a similar amendment and a cap introduced, owing to the total number of bills sent out annually for English billing authorities being on average much higher than Welsh councils, (compare Sheffield's 238,000 with Cardiff's 148,000), a cap, if it were to follow this logic would need to be a considerably lower amount.

 

 

There is incredible pressure now being made for the same regulation to be imposed in the UK.

 

In Wales, the regulations now impose a MAXIMUM amount that may be charged of £70 to debtors to cover the local authorities administration costs for the summons AND liability order stage AND the magistrate court fees.

 

Accordingly, it is perfectly legal for Welsh councils to charge ( for instance) a total sum of £54.37, £42.30 or even £69.95. Funny thing is that some have calculated that their costs come to exactly £70.

 

Very odd !!!

 

 

Welsh local authorities no doubt think that simply maxing their costs up to the £70 cap will be defence enough of their compliance with the law – unfortunately that isn't the way it works. The law, as applies in England and Wales, still only provides for reasonable costs incurred. The only practical difference there is for Welsh local authorities is that if their costs do exceed £70 (requiring a specialist accountant), they have to, by law, stand the loss.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
outlawla,

 

There is a website that is known to many on here that encourage debtors to take legal action against local authorities that charge debtors MORE THAN £3 when obtaining a Liability Order. Yet again, debtors should beware of taking 'legal advice' from internet sites.[/QUOTE]

 

 

 

Outlawla,

 

 

There can be little doubt that you are a EXPERT on the subject of these "costs".

 

I understand that occasionaly you also post on another forum where the above incorrect advice is being given. For the benefit of debtors it would be helpful if you were to correct the "advice".

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
....For the benefit of debtors it would be helpful if you were to correct the "advice".

 

 

I've revisited some of the posts related to the subject matter raised. It appears that some of this is only accessible to certain members for reasons of privacy, i.e., the need to keep personal details confidential.

 

That said it could be a template being referenced for a complaint, raising various points of law which appear justified arguments against the lawfulness of claiming costs in excess of the Magistrates' court fee per application (£3). This, if no further action is taken would not subject the complainant to any loss as it is merely a complaint to the council, not litigation. However, the follow up template requires claim form "Form N1" to be filed (used to start civil claims). Whether this would subject the claimant to litigation costs I don't know and can't really comment.

 

As to which options are open to an aggrieved person wishing to appeal a liability order (or reasonablness of costs) once ordered by the Magistrates' court, I have been led to believe that the only way is in the High Court. That, and requesting the council appeal to the Magistrates' court to quash the order (unlikely). This of course, may have been missinformation from the Magistrates' court in the hope that stating that the only route is through the High Court would deter further action.

Edited by outlawla

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Whatever is set down the councils will extract the urine and try for the maximum they can squeeze out of a debtor, their pension pots depend on it.


We could do with some help from you.

PLEASE HELP US TO KEEP THIS SITE RUNNING EVERY POUND DONATED WILL HELP US TO KEEP HELPING OTHERS

 

Have we helped you ...?         Please Donate button to the Consumer Action Group

 

If you want advice on your thread please PM me a link to your thread

 

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!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
style="text-align:center;"> Please note that this topic has not had any new posts for the last 1887 days.

If you are trying to post a different story then you should start your own new thread. Posting on this thread is likely to mean that you won't get the help and advice that you need.

If you are trying to post information which is relevant to the story in this thread then please flag it up to the site team and they will allow you to post.

Thank you
Guest
This topic is now closed to further replies.

  • Recently Browsing   0 Caggers

    No registered users viewing this page.


  • Have we helped you ...?


×
×
  • Create New...