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Paying Council Tax When You Are On Benefits

(10 Posts)
colette Thu 14-Aug-08 17:08:00

My db has mental health issues and has just told me the baliffs have been round as they think he owes council tax. he is very angry and it is difficult to get him to think logically
He is on invalidity benefit and said last year he got his physciatrist to write a letter which got him off the hook hmm . Apparently they are now demmanding £400.00 and will be back soon to remove goods to that amount. Db has hardly any furniture and a drink problem. He has a 4 year old ds who lives with his partner. He says they have said they will take the toys sad
I have advised him to contact cab, he has tried to get hold of his physciatrist but is unable to. I wondered as a general rule if you are on invalidity payments do you still pay a portion of council tax ? I suspect this is the case and db has not paid it. Just wondered if anyone had any more constructive advice . thanks

colette Thu 14-Aug-08 17:15:33


mrspnut Thu 14-Aug-08 17:20:28

They won't take toys but your db has perhaps had a break in claim or should have been paying something towards his council tax and has just ignored the letters. Bailiff action comes when all the other avenues have been exhausted so it shouldn't come out of the blue.

He needs to contact the council tax recovery section to find out exactly when the debt was from and sort out whether he should have been in receipt of full council tax benefit at that time.

As you have already advised him, he should go to CAB because they can do all of this for him, including ringing the council and bailiffs but ultimately it's his choice.

colette Thu 14-Aug-08 17:26:45

thanks mrspnut I think he has been ignoring letters. He lurches from one disaster to another angry but I still feel sorry for him. I am sending him local cab nos and details

fiodyl Thu 14-Aug-08 19:26:41

Maybe you should try to speak to the council/bailiffs/CAB too and try to explain that DB is probably unable to deal with his own affairs due to mental health, and see if they will let you do it for him- that is of course if you are willing to.

elkiedee Thu 14-Aug-08 19:42:54

He may not have claimed Council Tax Benefit - as I don't know income or limits I don't know how much he would have been entitled to but you do have to make the claim.

AvenaLife Thu 14-Aug-08 19:48:15

I would speak to the council and get them to hold the bailiffe's off. They are allowed to enter the home to take goods now he has allowed them to do an inventory so you need to contact the council ASAP. There are certain thing they are not allowed to take, beds, cooker, fridge, toys, clothes. They will take some furniture (table etc) if it is not necessary, tv, video, stereo, jewellery.

The CAB will be your best bet for support. He should have a health worker that is repsonsible for making sure he has all of this done. I'd chase this up.

theangelshavethephonebox Thu 14-Aug-08 19:59:19

If he is on incapacity benefit he should claim council tax benefit - he will then only need to pay a little bit of council tax. Sounds like he has claimed in the past and maybe had a break in his claim.

Get your brother to sign a letter stating he gives the council permission to discuss council tax and benefits with you - then give them a ring to find out what's happened. They will have a benefits section who can tell you exactly what to do - he'll probably need to fill in a request for the council tax benefit to be backdated, and will need to support this with a letter from his mental health worker/GP (to explain why he didn't respond to the earlier council tax demands and sort his benefit out).

colette Thu 14-Aug-08 22:37:17

thanks for the replies- I sent him the cab phone number , address and opening hours. He has texted back to say thanks and he will contact them.
However he sometimes does this and then does nothing! I will have to speak to them with his written permission as theangelshavethephonebox and avenalife have mentioned. He lives 400 miles away and i should keep in contact more often.

colette Thu 14-Aug-08 22:38:36

and fiodyl has also said this thanks

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