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Council Tax Arrears

Requested on
Tue 28th January, 2014
Reference
FOI 3867
Resolution
Information provided

Question

I would like to request the following data relating to council tax collection in your area for the first two quarters of both 2012/13 and 2013/14:
1. The number of households in arrears with their council tax payments;
2. The number of households in arrears with their council tax payments who are also in receipt of council tax support (sometimes referred to as council tax reduction, formally known as council tax benefit);
3. The council tax collection rate;
4. The number of times bailiffs have been referred to households in your area on account of non-payment of council tax.
As stated above, ideally we would want this data for the first two quarters of 2012/13 and the first two quarters of 2013/14. If this is not possible, please could you provide the most up-to-date data available for 2013/14 and the data for the equivalent period of the year before. If no such data is available with respect to 2013/14, please can you provide the expected numbers/rates for 2013/14 and the actual annual figures for 2012/13.

Answer

1. The number of households in arrears with their council tax payments;
We have used the point at which a liability order is granted to define ‘in arrears’. On that basis, so far this financial year 5,953 liability orders have been issued. I would estimate that a further 1,100 are likely to be issued, giving a total for 2013/14 of 7,063. During 2012/13 the number of liability orders issued was 5,215.

2. The number of households in arrears with their council tax payments who are also in receipt of council tax support (sometimes referred to as council tax reduction, formally known as council tax benefit);
We do not hold this as collated information.  We would hold the data in the form of individual Council Tax records, but the time required to locate and retrieve this information would exceed the appropriate limit for dealing with requests set out in section 12 of the Act and the Appropriate Limit and Fees Regulations

3. The council tax collection rate;
The collection rate for 2012/13 was 97.9%, the estimated collection rate for 2013/14 is 97.3%

4. The number of times bailiffs have been referred to households in your area on account of non-payment of council tax.
During 2012/13 approx 2,150 cases were referred to bailiffs, the figure for the current financial year is expected to be approximately 2,650.

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