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Late payment of council tax

It is important that you pay your council tax on time. If you pay late then you will be sent a reminder letter. If you continue to pay late then you will lose your right to pay in instalments.

Reminder notice

If you fail to pay in line with your bill you may be issued with a reminder notice.

Failure to pay the amount on your reminder notice within 7 days could result in the issue of a summons to the magistrates court.

Please note that we will only issue a maximum of 2 reminders in any financial year.

Final notice

If you have been issued with 2 reminders and you fail to pay an instalment by the due date for a third time, you may be issued with a final notice.

This notice means further failure to pay the instalments when due, will result in a summons to the magistrates court for non-payment of council tax.


If you have received a summons to the magistrates court, the amount shown needs to be paid in full before the court date to avoid a Liability Order being obtained.

If you are unable to pay the full amount we will request that a Liability Order is granted at the magistrates court on the hearing date stated on the summons. This will incur court costs of £99.

We can make a payment arrangement with you at this stage, but any arrangement will include the court costs.

Liability Orders

At the magistrates court, the council asks for a Liability Order to be issued. This allows the council to:

  • ask your employer to deduct an amount from your earnings
  • ask that payments are made direct to the council if you receive income support, job seekers allowance, employment support allowance or pension guaranteed credits
  • use enforcement agents (also known as bailiffs)
  • in some cases the council can register outstanding council tax as a charge on your property (like a mortgage)
  • begin bankruptcy proceedings
  • apply for a warrant committing the debtor to prison if the debt has been returned by the enforcement agent

Attachment of Earnings Orders

The council may ask your employer to deduct an amount from your earnings - you can see the level of deductions in the document below.

Please contact revenue services for more information on late payments and debt.

Guidance for employers

If you are an employer that has been asked for an Attachment of Earnings Order, please see our guidance document.

Contact information

Revenue Services

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