Council offers help to people struggling to pay their council tax

Cllr Mike Bell said businesses do need to follow the restrictions.

Cllr Mike Bell said businesses do need to follow the restrictions. - Credit: Archant

North Somerset Council is offering help to anyone having difficulty paying their council tax during the coronavirus crisis.

People who are having problems paying should contact the council to discuss either a payment holiday or reduced payment arrangement, or be directed to other welfare assistance.

Cllr Ash Cartman, the council’s executive member for finance, said: “We are keen to ensure that people who need financial assistance during the coming months are not worrying about their council tax payments.

“We would ask all those who are able to continue to pay their monthly instalments to do so.

“Council tax provides a significant proportion of the council’s revenue and enables us to run important local services, many of which are under pressure during this difficult time.

“If you are struggling to pay, contact us and we will do all we can to help.”

MORE: Parking charges waived for essential workers during pandemic.

Council tax bills have been issued and reminder notices and text prompts will continue as normal, but the authority will not be carrying out any further recovery action over the coming months.

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There will be no summons issued for non-payment and no enforcement action by bailiffs for anyone currently in arrears.

For those working age customers already in receipt of a council tax support discount, this discount will be increased by a further £150 for this year.

This will automatically be applied to their account and they will receive a new council tax bill.

Anyone considering claiming Universal Credit, either due to loss of income as a result of a reduction in hours, or loss of a job, or as self-employed, should advise the Department for Work and Pensions that they also wish to claim council tax support.

People are being urged, where possible, to use the contact us form on the council’s website here.

Anyone without access to the internet can call 01934 888144.

However, due to the high level of calls currently being experienced, you may be in a queue to speak to an adviser.

You can find more about the council tax support scheme here.