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Council Tax Summons

Requested on
Thu 19th June, 2014
Reference
FOI 4572
Resolution
Information provided

Question

I am requesting
1) The breakdown of costs for the £70 summons cost that Charnwood Borough Council charges for council tax summons.
2) The number of summons issued per month for the year 2013
3) The reasons that Charnwood Borough council mandates all summons for same day court appearance. (ie. 2,000 summons for 3 May)

Answer

The breakdown of costs for the £70 summons cost that Charnwood Borough Council charges for council tax summons.
The process of agreeing summons costs with the Court Service involves the Leicestershire Authorities providing a breakdown of costs associated with the recovery of debts. The average of those figures is presented to the Court Service for their approval as ‘reasonable costs’.

The following cost items are taken into account when calculating summons costs:
Account maintenance costs for summonsed accounts.
Printing, packing, and postage costs for reminder notices, final notices and summonses.
Staff costs related to telephone calls, correspondence and visits concerning summons accounts.
Staff costs related to attendance at Court.
IT costs related to the recovery process.
Magistrates Court fees.

The number of summons issued per month for the year 2013
February 2013      1,089 summonses
April 2013             654 summonses
May 2013              2,710 summonses
June 2013             836 summonses
July 2013              835 summonses
August 2013         612 summonses
October 2013        925 summonses
December 2013    1,063 summonses        

The reasons that Charnwood Borough council mandates all summons for same day court appearance. (ie. 2,000 summons for 3 May)
The date, time, and number of liability order applications heard is at the discretion of the Magistrates Court. The ‘bulk’ application procedure is undertaken for practical purposes to allow the Court to hear as many applications as possible in the timescales available. The Court will always allow taxpayers to address the Magistrates (where requested), regardless of the number of liability order applications listed

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