If you are having problems paying your council tax contact us right away and we will deal with you in an understanding, sympathetic, firm but fair way.

We will:

  • allow reasonable repayments to be made
  • carry out interviews in private on request
  • make sure you receive your full entitlement to any council tax discounts/exemptions, council tax reductions or second adult reductions that you may qualify for
  • help you to contact other agencies that can assist if you have more than one debt

If you don't pay your council tax, we will contact you to find out if there is a problem. We may telephone you, visit your home, e-mail or text you. Please read our council tax collection policy for more information:

Council Tax collection policy

Council tax must be paid as per the instructions on your bill (which we issue in March each year). Please see our payment page for more information about how you can pay your council tax bill or arrears.


Frequently asked questions

  1. What is the council tax arrears process?
  2. Why have you sent me a reminder to pay my council tax, when I pay by standing order every month?
  3. Why have I have received a reminder notice when my council tax payments are up to date?
  4. Why have you sent more than one final notice for council tax to my house?
  5. Why have I received a final notice for council tax asking me to pay the full balance when it’s not the end of the year?
  6. I have received a final notice on my council tax but can’t afford to pay the amount in full. What will I do?
  7. I've received a Sheriff Officer letter. Can't I just make an arrangement with the Council?
  8. I have received a summary warrant for council tax but have had no previous notice from you. Is this correct?
  9. Why have I received a summary warrant for council tax arrears?
  10. Can I pay a summary warrant for council tax directly from my benefit?
  11. How can I appeal against the additional 10% on the summary warrant?
  12. What is a council tax earnings arrestment?

What is the council tax arrears process?

  • When you miss an instalment or part of an instalment we will send you a reminder
  • If you bring your account up to date and keep it up to date no further action will be taken
  • If you don’t pay the amount on the reminder by the required date you will receive a final notice
  • If we send a final notice you have lost the right to pay by instalments and your full balance is due. If you get a final notice it’s not enough to bring your payments up to date, you must pay the full balance on your account by the required date or contact us to discuss an alternative payment plan.
  • If you don’t pay the amount on the final notice by the required date, we will apply to the Sheriff Court for a Summary Warrant. When a Summary Warrant is granted you will have to pay an additional 10% surcharge of the outstanding balance.  This is added to help cover administration costs.
  • Please remember to make your payments by the 1st of each month to avoid falling into arrears.
  • If you don’t make payments as directed on your bills and reminders or don’t stick to arrangements you have made with us you will be charged a surcharge. 

Why have you sent me a reminder to pay my council tax, when I pay by standing order every month?

You are either not paying the correct amount or by the correct date as stated on your council tax bill.  Please contact us right away.


Why have I have received a reminder notice when my council tax payments are up to date?

You may not have made your payment by the 1st of the month. We send out a reminder 7 days after we expect to have received your council tax payment. If you have made a payment recently, your payment may not have reached your council tax account when we sent the reminder. If this is the case please contact us to make sure the payment has been received.


Why have you sent more than one final notice for council tax to my house?

By law, we must send a copy of the final notice to each of the liable council tax payers within the household.  The full account balance is shown on each of these notices.


Why have I received a final notice for council tax asking me to pay the full balance when it’s not the end of the year?

You have lost the right to pay by instalments as you have not paid as required, so you are being asked to pay the full balance for the year.


I have received a final notice on my council tax but can’t afford to pay the amount in full. What will I do?

Contact us right away and we will discuss your options.


I've received a Sheriff Officer letter. Can't I just make an arrangement with the Council?

You may be able to make an arrangement with the Council but you must contact the Sheriff Officer first.


I have received a summary warrant for council tax but have had no previous notice from you. Is this correct?

No, you will have been sent a notice giving 14 days to pay the full amount. If you didn’t receive this please contact us right away.


Why have I received a summary warrant for council tax arrears?

You have failed to pay the Final Notice we sent you.


Can I pay a summary warrant for council tax directly from my benefit?

Where appropriate we will ask the Department for Work and Pensions to deduct monies direct from your benefit.  However you should look to avoid this as we can only do this where a summary warrant has been obtained (and 10% costs added). We would encourage you to contact us and try to pay the ongoing charges to avoid the additional costs.


How can I appeal against the additional 10% on the summary warrant?

You must put your appeal in writing to the office manager at your local One Stop Shop stating your reasons for appeal.


What is a council tax earnings arrestment?

A Summary Warrant (granted by the Sheriff Court) allows us to take certain methods of recovery, one of which is an earnings arrestment. We recover what you owe us directly from your wages. You must provide details when requested by us and we don’t need to consult you when considering an earnings arrestment.