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gavva2010

Help needed with council tax summons pls

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I recevied a summons for non-payment of council tax in January, without any prior reminder or final-demand letter. I phoned them & paid the amount owing, however the person on the phone advised that I could waive the £50- fee for the upcoming court date, & all would be fine. I then received a statement from the council last week, claiming "you owe £75.00 from previous tax years". 

 

I emailed Anglia Revenue Partnership to enquire about this amount, as far as I was concerned it was all up-to-date, & received a reply stating that

 

"I have checked the notes on your account and you spoke to my colleague on the 31st January 2019. She advised you that the costs were payable and you advised that you would pay the charge and not the costs. It was not agreed that these would be withdrawn and in fact because there was still a balance outstanding the case continued to Court and you received the additional £25.00 costs. Therefore I am afraid that the costs are still fully payable, as we did not agreed to withdraw."

 

 Making the new total £75.00 owing. This is nonsense. I recall the phonecall perfectly well, & I was told "if you leave the £50- charge, they usually just waive it". & if it continued to court, why have I not been contacted, as I wasn't there? 

 

I'm really not happy about this additional charge, as far as I'm concerned I was obviously given some very shoddy advice from the council, which has left me with this extra bill. During the chat I had with the council prior to the court hearing, I also queried why I hadn't received a reminder, & was told "you've had reminders in the past, & final demands, so this time they skipped that stage & went straight to a summons".

 

I accept I should have paid on time, & this initially was my error & not theirs, but this seems like a very slack approach to dealing with people.  

 

Any help/advice would be gratefully received, thanks

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I have replied to ARP stating this

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Posted (edited)

I'd take anything the call centre says with a pinch of salt.  Personally, I'd take it up with my local elected councillor, via email or phone, they will quickly get to the meat of the matter and sort it out for you.

Edited by London1971

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Thanks for this London1971, I've sent my local councillor an email outlining this, I'll be back to report if / when I get a response. 

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Follow them up in 48 hours if you don't get a response.

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Will do, I used a very handy website which looks them up & provides a short-form which it sends directly to them... Not sure if I'm allowed to mention their web address on here or not, (I will if I can?) certainly a very convenient tool to get access to them thoguh.

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Prior to a summons there has to have been a demand notice and at least one reminder/final notice at some point. Depending on the specifics though these can be have been issued some time prior to the action and, if you've already had 2 reminders during the year then there is no requirement to issue a third before a summons is issued,

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Posted (edited)

Thx for your reply ss002d6252 - I had made a lump-sum payment last year, which I had mistakenly thought covered me to the end of the Financial Year, but in fact had only covered up to November. I recall I may have had a reminder or 2 last year, for missing the monthly payment deadline, (Due to a period of financial difficulty around Springtime), but not specifically related to the missed Payment for This January. So do they see it as "you've used up all your reminders for this year", or was I entitled to the reminder & Final Demand for this separate occasion? 

Edited by gavva2010

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, gavva2010 said:

Thx for your reply ss002d6252 - I had made a lump-sum payment last year, which I had mistakenly thought covered me to the end of the Financial Year, but in fact had only covered up to November. I recall I may have had a reminder or 2 last year, for missing the monthly payment deadline, (Due to a period of financial difficulty around Springtime), but not specifically related to the missed Payment for This January. So do they see it as "you've used up all your reminders for this year", or was I entitled to the reminder & Final Demand for this separate occasion?  

 

The standard process is that one demand notice covers April to March so the reminders are based off that demand notice - if an amended demand notice was issued during the year it resets the counts but otherwise it's a maximum of two reminders in any one council tax year. Keep in mind that if either of the reminders are complied with then you lose the right to instalments (therefore you don't always get two reminders as a warning.).

Edited by ss002d6252

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So I'd used up my reminders for the year then, that does explain the Summons without any prior warning. So the only issue now is that they advised me one way on the phone, & typed something else on the notes. Hence the £50- has now become £75-, no reply from my local councillor yet - I'll be following that up later today. 

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It's a busy week, (if you have elections in your area), in which case your councillor might be different tomorrow if they get voted out.

 

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I've now written to the (new) local councillor, I'll be back on here when I get a response. Thanks for your help 

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