Paying your Council Tax

Paying your Council Tax

Posted: Mon, 05 Feb 2024 14:10

'My Council Tax bill 2023/24 has just come through and I am concerned about how I can pay it.'

If you are already struggling to meet everyday household expenses the arrival of a new Council Tax demand can be a real worry. Citizens Advice Charnwood warns that it is particularly important not to ignore the bill as non- payment could lead to formal proceedings and court action. But help may be available.

First check your bill

Start by making sure you understand the bill. Check that your house is banded correctly and decide which method of payment is best for you. The bill can be paid in monthly instalments over 10 months but remember, if more than two payments are overdue the full amount of annual Council Tax becomes due and legal proceedings can commence.

Make sure you are getting all the discounts you may be entitled to

  • You can get a single person discount of 25% if you are the only adult in your home. When working out how many people live in the property some may be disregarded – for example if they are a student, live temporarily away from home, have a learning disability or severe mental impairment.
  • If you or someone you live with is disabled, the Council Bill for the property may be reduced. The property must have an extra kitchen or bathroom and one other room required to meet the needs of the disabled person.
  • If you qualify as a carer, providing at least 35 hours care a week for a someone who is living with you, but is not your spouse or partner, a further discount may apply.
  • Full-time students on a university or college course or persons under 20 studying for a course up to A level of at least 3-month duration and involving a minimum of 12 hours study a week are exempt from Council Tax.

If you are you on a low income or receiving benefits

You may be eligible for Council Tax Reduction if you or people living with you are on a low income or in receipt of benefits. You will need to provide evidence about your circumstances, income and any capital which must be less than £16,000. If in receipt of the guarantee part of Pension Credit the £16,000 limit does not apply. The amount of reduction to which you are entitled will be calculated based on the information provided. Further help may be available in the case of severe financial hardship.

If you cannot pay your Council Tax bill you should contact Charnwood Borough Council straight away to request a payment arrangement. You may also request for payments to be spread over a 12 month rather than a 10-month period.

All applications for Council Tax discounts, exemptions and reductions must be made online from the Charnwood Borough Council website. If you need further help with this or in understanding your Council Tax bill you can speak to one of our advisersWe can also help if you are struggling financially and worried about debt.

Our Local Enquiry Line is 01509 649605 and is open Mondays, Tuesdays & Thursdays 9.30am-3.00pm. Please visit our website for further details or use the national Citizens Advice website for more information about help with Council Tax and dealing with debt.

We are an independent charity, and we rely on the support of people like you to help us make a difference to people in our local community. We help people with the problems they face, while campaigning to improve the policies and practices that affect people's lives.

You can donate to Citizens Advice Charnwood by making a one-time or regular monthly donation through Co-op bank for the credit of Citizens Advice Charnwood - Account Number: 65879535 Sort Code: 089299

Or you can send a cheque to:

Citizens Advice Charnwood, Woodgate Chambers, 70 Woodgate, LOUGHBOROUGH, Leicestershire, LE11 2TZ.

More information about how to donate can be found on our website.

Thanks for your support!

Tags: Housing, arrears, budgeting, council tax, council tax reduction, debt, finances