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Jo C.
Jo C., Barrister
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 71153
Experience:  Over 5 years in practice
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I have at long last managed to get up to date with my council

Customer Question

I have at long last managed to get up to date with my council tax.
I have now been informed my account has incured bailiff fees of some £500.00
I have always refused to deal with bailiffs and always paid the council direct as I was of the opinion that whilst bailiffs were in reciept of a liability order I was under no obligation to enter into and contract or payment arrangements with them
Could you confirm the situation for me
Robert kent
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Jo C. replied 2 years ago.
Thank you for your question. My name is ***** ***** I will try to help with this.
If the Council have a liability order and did, in fact, refer it to bailiffs who did, in fact, do some work upon your case then you are liable for their fees.
Whether you were amenable to discussions with the bailiffs or not is a non issue. If they were trying to make contact with you then they can charge for that.
If they are trying to charge £500 plus though then that is not going to be letters only. I would expect visits for that amount of money whether successful or not.
Can I clarify anything for you?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

Hi Joe


Expert:  Jo C. replied 2 years ago.
How can I help?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

Sorry I thought i had inclueded my question

In relation to these bailiff fees am I able to sak for a breakdown of the fees or can they just turn up at my house stuffing photocopied letters through my door with handwriten almost unreadable bits tr

heatening to take my car if I dont pay by the following day at 6am


Expert:  Jo C. replied 2 years ago.
Have you paid them yet?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

Dear Cathy

Thank you for your reply

I now understand The Council have a liability order and have referred it to bailiffs who did, in fact do some work to which I have a liability regarding their fees. Confirmed by the statute you have directed me to

I m still waiting your conformation about increasing the direct debit to include the outstanding council tax for 2013 as per my email of the 26th march

The bailiff fees of £499.19. I have on several occasions contacted Stanford and Green in relation to procedure to which I have never had any response. Bearing this in my mind I don’t not think it unreasonable to ask for a breakdown of Stanford and Greens fees.

In view of the fact they never respond to my correspondence I would be grateful if you would contact them requesting a breakdown of fees with supporting documentation.

My request to increase the direct debit and the outstanding confirmation relating to Stanford and Greens fees, prohibits me from making an offer to clear the outstanding business rates regarding 11 St Lawrence Court until I have a firm position regarding my cash flow

I suggest you suspend any action regarding the application for a summons this coming Monday until these matters have been resolved

Robert Kent

From:***@******.*** [mailto***@******.***]
Sent: 29 May 2015 10:04
Subject: council tax and business rates

Your current balances for 6 Dean Mead are as follows:

Council Tax 2015 £1400.00

Council Tax 2013 £766.00

Bailiff Fees £495.19

Liability orders were obtained in respect of unpaid council tax as follows:

23 August 2013 in the sum of £1128.00

22 June 2012 in the sum of £2306.03

22 July 2011 in the sum of £2076.00

Although there are earlier Liability orders I believe that these are the focus of your current enquiries

Once a liability order is obtained, the matter can be passed to Enforcement Agents, who are working on behalf of Shepway Council for collection. In your case the matter was refered to our agents in July 2014 as previous payment plans failed. You were advised of our ability to take this action in letter dated 9 July 2014, the matter being passed to Stanford and Green on 28 July.

Although payment then commenced directly to Shepway District Council after a compliance letter had been sent there was a break in payments so Stanford and Green were instructed to recommence enforcement action

Regulation 45 of The Council Tax (Administration and Enforcement) regs 1992 contains all the relevant legislation on using authorised enforcement agents.

I hope this explains the situation and that you can now accept that Stanford and Green are working on behalf of Shepway District Council and can now pay as requested

If you are unhappy with this response you can contact the Councils Complaint Officer to make a complaint about this matter.

Regarding business rates due for 11 St Lawrence Court, High Street, New Romney, I note that no payment has been received Unless a payment of £1006.00 is received by 1 June 2015, a summons will be issued for non payment of business rates

Miss C Hearsey

Recovery Officer

Customer Contact

T: 01303 853555

F: 01303 853416

Shepway District Council, Civic Centre,

Castle Hill Avenue, Folkestone, Kent, CT20 2QY


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Hi Jo

I have copied you in on the most recent correspondance

I have had no reply from the council and a much diluted letter put through my door by the bailiff yesterday