Problems paying and late payment

Your council tax is due on or before your instalment date (shown on your most recent council tax bill), paying after your instalment date may result in recovery action being taken and costs being incurred.

We want to help you pay your council tax. If you are having difficulty making your payments, contact the Local Tax Team on 01256 844844 as soon as possible.

What can I do?

To help you make payments, you could:

How can I pay?

Direct debit

You have the choice of paying on 5, 13, 20 or 28 of each month and you can also make payment over 10 or 12 instalments depending on the time of the year.

Contact the Local Tax Team on 01256 844844 to set it up over the phone or download a direct debit form.

Online

Using a highly secure link, you can pay 24 hours a day, seven days a week via the internet – pay now.

Standing order of bank transfer

You will need to contact your bank and give them our bank details as follows:

Basingstoke & Deane HSBC General Account
Sort code – 40-09-18
Account number – 51521691

Telephone

You can use the automated payment line on 01256 845757, 24 hours a day, seven days a week, using your debit/credit card.

Alternatively you can call us during office hours on 01256 844844 to make payment (Monday to Thursday 8.30am to 5.30pm and on Friday 8.30am to 5pm)

Post

You can post your cheque, payable to Basingstoke and Deane Borough Council to:

Basingstoke & Deane Borough Council
Civic Offices
London Road
Basingstoke
RG21 4AH

What happens if I don't pay?

If you don't pay, we can take the following recovery steps. A detailed explanation of what happens and what it means for you if you receive one of these recovery documents is explained below. Click on the relevant recovery stage for further information and advice:

Please note at reminder or final notice stage you still have the options of setting up a direct debit and continuing with your statutory instalments as shown on your bill.

Reminders (first or second)

What will happen?

  • If you do not pay or are making regular payments but later than the instalment date you will receive a reminder.
  • If we have already sent you a first reminder but you do not pay or pay late again you will receive a second reminder.
  • You will have seven days to pay the amount due on these reminders or alternatively pay the full years balance within a further seven days.

What can I do?

  • Firstly, you must pay the missed instalment within the timescales on your reminder and you can then continue to pay in instalments. If you can't do this then you have the following options:
    • You can change the date you make payments to suit your situation – your options are 5, 13, 20 or 28 of each month by completing the online form.
    • You can set up a direct debit by calling the Local Tax Team on 01256 844844.
    • If you are experiencing financial difficulties you can contact the Local Tax Team on 01256 844844 to discuss what options are available to you. Please note that it may be necessary for you to supply a detailed account of your income and expenditure.
Final notice

What will happen?

  • This notice will advise you that you have lost your rights to pay by instalments and you have seven days to pay the full balance on your account.
  • If you do not pay the full balance, a summons (incurring costs) will be issued.

What can I do?

  • Pay in full and no further action will be taken.
  • Bring your account up to date with the most recent instalment due and set up a direct debit. To do this you must contact the Local Tax Team on 01256 844844.
Summons/liability order hearing

What will happen?

  • A Magistrates Court summons will be issued (incurring court costs) to seek a liability order.
  • A payment arrangement will be set up at this time and a letter will be sent to advise what you are expected to pay and when.
  • It is your right to appear, however you do not need to attend the Court.
  • If you attend the court hearing the ONLY defences that the Magistrates will take into account which can stop the liability order being issued are:
    • not properly served or issued with documents
    • council tax not set properly
    • the debt is being recovered more than six years after it became due
    • the amount has been paid
    • bankruptcy or liquidation proceedings have commenced and debt is included
    • protection Under Reserve & Aux Forces Act 1951
    • Administration Order in force through the County Court Act 1984
    • property not in area
    • incorrect charge for band
    • clerical/computer error in banding
    • allowance or relief not granted
    • out of time
    • breach of natural justice
    • outstanding appeal against penalty
    • Diplomatic Privileges Act 1964 immunity
    • Crown Property
    • amounts are not charged in accordance with any transitional arrangements
    • demand notices not served as soon as practicable
    • incorrect service of summons

After the hearing you will be issued with a liability order and an information request form which must be completed and returned to the Local Tax Team.

A liability order gives the council the power to demand information about your earnings and employment and also allows various remedies to recover any outstanding monies owed.

What can I do?

  • Pay in full (plus court costs) before the court date and the court hearing will not proceed.
  • Pay in accordance with the payment arrangement and a liability order will be requested, but no further action will be taken.
  • Contact the Local Tax Team to renegotiate a payment arrangement – however the debt must be paid by the end of the financial year. You will be required to provide a detailed statement of your income and expenditure.

You must complete the information request form to support any payment arrangements .

Once a liability order is issued

What will happen?

Once a liability order has been granted, we can use any of the following remedies to secure payment:

  • Attachment of earning – an order is sent to your employer to deduct a percentage from your earnings depending on what your net earnings are.
  • Deductions from benefits – an application will be made to the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) to make a weekly deduction from your benefit if you are in receipt of the following DWP benefits: Income Support, Job Seekers Allowance (income based), Employment and Support Allowance (income related), Universal Credit or Pension Credit (Guarantee credit).
  • Enforcement agents – the debt will be passed to the enforcement agent if all of the above fails. They can take goods from your home to clear the arrears and additional costs for their services are incurred.
  • Bankruptcy – bankruptcy proceedings can be taken against you. For more information visit the Insolvency Service website.
  • Charging Order – a Charging Order may be placed on your property.
  • Committal to Prison – If the enforcement agent is unable to recover the debt, we can make an application to the Magistrates Court for your commitment to prison.

If it is necessary to take one of the courses of action listed above, you will be contacted by a member of the Local Tax Team to explain what will happen and what is expected of you.

Contact details

Local Tax

If you have an enquiry about council tax, send a message to the Local Tax Team.

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