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Problems paying council tax

​Always let us know if you are having difficulties paying your council tax. Never ignore any reminder or final notice issued as this can lead to the start of recovery action against you. If recovery action is taken you will have to pay recovery costs in addition to the council tax due.

Contact the Council Tax team for more information and advice.

What will happen if you do not pay

Council tax is a statutory debt and the City of London Corporation will serve notices requiring your account to be brought up to date. Details of the recovery stages are detailed below.

Reminders and final notice

Reminders will be issued if you fail to pay your council tax instalment(s) by the due date stated on your council tax bill. To carry on paying by instalments you must pay the overdue amount stated on the reminder within seven days. You will only be sent a maximum of two reminders in any financial year.

If you receive a final notice you are not entitled to pay the amount by instalments and the full amount stated on the final notice must be paid within seven days.

Summons and liability order

If payment is not made in accordance with any reminder or final notice issued the City of London Corporation can make an application to the magistrate's court for the issue of a summons for non-payment without further notice. If a summons is issued you will be liable to pay summons costs of £55, this will increase by a further £35 if a liability order is obtained at the court hearing.

Enforcement agent collections and other enforcement actions

A liability order allows the City of London Corporation to use additional powers to recover the overdue amount from you. The City of London Corporation can:-

  • instruct an enforcement agent to take control of your goods in accordance with legislation contained in Schedule 12 of the Tribunals Courts and Enforcement Act 2007 and its supporting regulations of 2013 and 2014
  • order your employers to make deductions from your earnings
  • if appropriate, request that deductions be made from your income support or job seeker's allowance.

Enforcement agent fees

If an enforcement agent is instructed through the taking control of goods process and associated legislation you will be liable to pay statutory fees and charges to the enforcement agent, in addition to the debt and costs owed to the City of London Corporation. The statutory fees for each enforcement stage under the taking control of goods process are shown below:-

  • compliance stage fee £75
  • enforcement stage fee £235 plus 7.5% of the sum to be recovered exceeding £1500
  • sale stage fee £110 plus 7.5% of the sum to be recovered exceeding £1500 (plus additional amounts for locksmith charges; storage charges and auction costs - as disbursement costs).

Have to checked to see if you are entiled to a council tax discount, exemption or relief?

Review the information available for council tax discounts, exemptions and reliefs.

If you are on a low income have you applied for a council tax reduction scheme discount?

The scheme is operated by the benefits service which is part of the Department of Community and Children's Services. To check if you are entitled to help paying your council tax please see the information on our council tax reduction scheme.

Independent advice can be obtained from Toynbee Hall

Toynbee Hall is located just to the east of the City and provides a free financial advice service to those who live, work or study in the City of London.