Falling into council tax debt can ruin lives and leave families distraught, and recent times have unfortunately seen a distinct rise in such troubles since the economic downturn. Since government cuts to council tax benefits were passed, many people have struggled to pay and have subsequently been faced with out of control debt issues and the frightening prospect of a visit from bailiffs. Because of their terrible reputation, the threat of bailiffs can cause unprecedented stress that leads to even larger problems in the long run.
Figures have revealed that there has been a 15% increase in the number of liability orders issued by magistrates courts for council tax arrears since last year, but this jumps further to 30% in areas that have had their public assistance withdrawn. An uncomfortable trend seems to be emerging since recent times have left so many people worse off, and it is commonly thought that issues with bailiffs have also risen. These kinds of problems leave vulnerable people open to unfair treatment, and it’s incredibly important that everyone knows their rights when it comes to dealing with bailiffs.
It’s become a worrying trend for the poorest people in Britain to be the ones called to court over council tax arrears, with no way to pay what they cannot afford. It is thought that cases of this happening have jumped up by two thirds over the last year, largely assumed to be a symptom of council tax benefit cuts that come as part of the government’s Welfare Reform Act 2012. The act puts the responsibility on to local councils, with traditional benefits replaced by a social welfare grant that only covers a percentage of the monthly council tax bills of those in need.
This inevitably results in action for too many households, with a visit from bailiffs an increasingly common end point for those who have become unable to pay what is due. With so few of these individuals and families aware of how to properly deal with unprofessional or aggressive bailiffs, this eventuality can be very damaging, and it’s important that anyone facing bailiff action seek help from experienced advisors such as those at Council Tax Advisors. Contact us today to find out what your rights really are and what you can do to eliminate council tax worries for good.