Scottish Summary Warrants Explained

For people falling into debt it can be difficult to remain positive when receiving constant reminders of your situation from creditor’s calls or the letters they send directly to you. It can be a distressing time and suffering in silence can only worsen things. At Council Tax Advisors we help people around the country with free and independent support for a wide selection of debt problems. It should not matter how you’ve fallen into the red, we are committed at finding realistic solutions to get your financial stability back once and for all.

Getting court orders is an unfortunate consequence for people struggling with their finances. Creditors will often apply to the judicial branch in order to speed up repayments and this let further panic ensue for people frantically trying to get sufficient funds together. Scottish summary warrants are used by local authorities with the sole intention of getting money owed to them as quickly as they can. To speed this process up they will make applications to courts about repayments.

The demand for payment will usually have a time limit of 14 days and Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs (HMRC) cannot take action against you until this charge has been served and the time limit expires. This is known as diligence. Diligence can be used against people in financial difficulty in numerous ways. Your money in a bank or building society account can be frozen and even released to the creditor, along with an earnings arrestment. This makes your employer take deductions from your earnings then pay this to HMRC. This consequence can be very damaging to a person’s morale and pride, so contact Council Tax Advisors to avoid this if you’re worried about your arrears.

Sheriff Officers such as Scott and Co also have the power to seize goods that are outside your home and then sell them to pay HMRC. This adds greater fear to people in debt because they will be in for a nasty shock when one of their items disappears. Another way creditors can get money off you is through an exceptional attachment order. This gives officers the authority to break into your home and seize goods in order to sell them on. Perhaps most dramatically, you can be stopped from selling your property or taking our more borrowing on it.

Potential action from enforcement agents and the like can increase stress levels and place greater pressures on your finances. Contacting our helpful and effective team at Council Tax Advisors will not only prevent bailiffs from entering your home, but it will give you an affordable repayment plan that will be effective in the long run. We are only interested in helping people change their financial fortunes around for the better. Remember – there’s no risk and no catch when you come to us, so get in touch with us today.

Housing Benefit Overpayments – Simple steps to resolve your overpayment issues

While much of what we hear regarding benefits is to do with them being cut across the board, there are still occasions where you may find yourself receiving more than your agreed quota from month to month. Should this be the case, the local council will at some point get in touch with you in order to rectify this – something that can often leave people in difficult financial predicaments as they are forced to pay back money they were unaware that they owed.

The important thing is to both know your rights and know the correct procedures to follow should you find yourself in this situation. These instances happen for a number of reasons, so it’s crucial to make clear exactly why you have been receiving overpayments and for how long. For example, an administrative error could have occurred at your local council, or your financial situation may have changed and subsequently caused your eligibility for benefits to alter somewhat. Either way, you won’t be automatically considered a perpetrator of fraud if you were unaware of the occurrences, so there is no reason to panic should your local authority contact you regarding this.

If they contact you in attempt to rectify the error and you don’t comply – through financial reasons or otherwise – you may be at risk from greater penalties imposed by the state. A civil penalty is sometimes issued if the overpayment has been triggered by a change you have actively made, or information you have failed to pass over to your benefit office. This is penalty will come into play if there is no reason to believe you have actively committed fraudulent activity, so is fairly common around the UK.

If you feel as though the penalty has been issued unfairly, it’s crucial you take action immediately rather than simply refusing to pay the fee – with the help of our experienced team here at Council Tax Advisors, we can help you take the next steps towards tackling this charge, so ensure you contact us if you find yourself in a situation such as this. Fraudulent activities are a different ballgame altogether, and will be dealt with by local police and court authorities in the suitable manner.

What do I do if I’ve been told my benefits have been overpaid?

You should always make sure that the benefit office has clearly outlined the reasons why you have been overpaying. Before proceeding with any kind of assessment as to why these have been made, you will need to ensure that the benefits office has provided you with legitimate reasons complete with the relevant documentations as evidence of their claim.

If you want to adopt a more direct approach, it is often worth ringing up the benefits office or visiting them in person. If you can provide them with information that proves their claim to be unfounded, then you will be able to nip the claim in the bud and avoid any further penalties that may stem from an unresolved case. If you have the evidence but they are still unsure, ask them to open a dispute so your benefits are looked into by officials and that the investigation takes into account any further support or information you may be able to provide them to prove your case.

If you are unsure how to proceed with your case of benefit overpayment, the important thing is not to panic. Here at Council Tax Advisors, we have a skilled team with years of experience in these matters on hand to ensure your issues can be resolved in a manner that suits you and your benefits office. We will work with you in order to assess their claim, and then move forward quickly so as to ensure you are not exposed to any further charges that may put your financial situation in further jeopardy.

For more information regarding how we may be able to assist you in these circumstances, or indeed any more information on benefits overpayments as a general concept, don’t hesitate to contact Council Tax Advisors today.

Trust Deeds and How They Affect Your Property

Unemployment figures may indicate that more British people are now working compared to 2013, but this does not necessarily mean that citizens are financially stable. Having a regular job does not make paying for utility bills, rent and the overall cost of living much easier for an alarming number of taxpayers. Of course, employment is welcome, particularly in such a harsh economic climate, but figures should be taken lightly due to a high number of Britons remaining in the red.

Falling into debt problems causes real anxiety and panic among people of various age groups around the UK. Quite often people in this predicament can feel helpless, with no hope of regaining a strong economic standing. Fortunately, perceived hopelessness can soon be eradicated when you contact us at Council Tax Advisors. Receiving free and independent advice should not be underestimated – we only have our client’s best interests at heart unlike payday lenders and debt collection companies.

An option for Scottish residents struggling financially is signing up to a trust deed. People living in Scotland can typically pay off debts totalling £5,000 within four years without losing their home or car if they make the agreed regular repayments. You must have a regular income to make sure your occupation of a flat or house is unaffected by a trust deed. If you make all the agreed payments to creditors then you’re protected from losing your home.

When people sink into debt they can lose everything. Possessions, however precious some people view them, are quite frankly of minor importance to your property where you may have lived for years or where you’re raising children. Losing this is not an option – with the spiralling cost of the UK housing market it can be difficult to quickly find a replacement home. For this reason, getting a trust deed may be your best option to protect vital belongings.

Children will understand that they can’t afford a new HD television, but will be less understanding and sympathetic if you’re kicked out of a home. If you have a regular income then this can be avoided. Your eligibility to getting a trust deed is not dependent on whether you’re a private tenant, homeowner or council tenant. Trust deeds just cover your unsecured debts – arrears arising from personal loans, credit cards along with other things.

If you do not pay the agreed repayments then you put yourself at risk of sequestration and this includes prized assets such as your property. Success is not guaranteed, but if you can afford the repayments then you should be able to write off your debts without burdening yourself and loved ones with eviction. However worried you are about debt, it can be solved and contacting Council Tax Advisors is an effective first step in combating the problem.

We are committed to helping anyone with debt problems, whatever the cause. We recognise that there can be several reasons why people fall into the red, but don’t worry – call us and we’ll find a solution for you. A trust deed may be your best course of action, but we are adept at finding several other options for you to turn your finances and life around.

Trust Deeds – The Pro’s & Con’s

When faced with an overwhelming amount of debt, you may already be considering a sequestration. However, a Trust Deed could be an alternative way for you to tackle your debt. If you have at least £5,000 of debt from two or more creditors and you have a regular source of income, a Trust Deed may be an effective product for you. Before making any financial decisions, it’s always important to understand the pros and cons. Council Tax Advisors has comprised a list to help you make the best decision. If you are still unsure, CTACIC can provide free and impartial debt advice to help you make the right decision.

Pro’s
Avoid creditor hassle

Unsecured creditors who have agreed to the terms and conditions of a trust deed are required to leave you alone as soon as it is protected. Your trustee will deal with all contact from your unsecured creditors from this point on. They will distribute your payments among them according to the terms of your trust deed.

Avoid interest and charges

Any charges and interest from your unsecured debt are usually not applied, so long as you abide by the specific repayment plan. If your trust deed is protected, even unsecured creditors cannot instigate any proceedings against you.

Financial stability

Normally, a trust deed will only last for around four years. This will alleviate the weight of debt that is carried for years on end. A trust deed gives you an opportunity at a clean slate.

Disposable income will be used to pay creditors

Living expenses such as your rent or mortgage, bills, food and work-related travel costs will take priority in your trust deed budget. This means you will never have to go without in order to make your repayments. However, luxuries such as gym memberships and holidays will not be allowed.

Negotiation

You have the option to negotiate to keep your home rather than sell it. This is a huge fear people have to deal with when facing a sequestration. Being forced to sell a family home and move into rented accommodation can be incredibly distressing. A trust deed can prevent this from happening.

Carry on trading

If you own a business, or you are a sole trader, you will still be able to carry on trading. You may even be able to obtain very small amounts of credit, unless the terms of your trust deed stipulate otherwise.

Con’s
Damaged credit rating

One of the biggest issues of trust deeds is the fact that it will inevitably affect your credit rating. There really is no way to avoid this, although it is important to remember that your credit record is already being affected if you have missed payments on your debts.

Sell or re-mortgage

There is a very real possibility that you will have to sell or re-mortgage your home. This usually applies to a main residence if it has little or no equity. There are several options to avoid having to sell, however the trust deed will certainly need you to sell all high value items to raise the funds to pay your creditors.

Public record

Your trust deed will be recorded on the Register of Insolvencies, which is in fact a public record. If someone knows where to look, they will be able to find out about your trust deed. However, this is highly unlikely unless they are specifically searching for the information.

Risks of missed payments

If you miss a payment during your trust deed agreement without contacting your trustee for a discussion beforehand, you may find that the trust deed will fail. This will mean your unsecured creditors are entitled to pursue you for sequestration again.

Does not cover secured debts

Only unsecured debts will be covered by a trust deed, so any loans that are secured to your home or through hire purchase agreements will not be covered.

Does not cover new debt

Running up any new debts during your trust deed agreement means that any new creditors will be able to pursue you for your new debts. Your existing trust deed does not cover debts incurred outside of the agreement.

The Role of a Jacobs Enforcement Agent Collecting Council Tax

Jacobs enforcement agents were established in 1959 and are one of the most well established firms within the enforcement profession. The company provide traditional enforcement and debt recovery services in partnership with over 157 Council’s throughout the whole of the UK. Over time the business has provided a controlled and serious enforcement service, working under a solid infrastructure. Operating in both England and Wales, the company provide a debt recovery service that meets all statutory quality of service requirement. However, as enforcement agents, Jacobs are mainly focused on client retention and aim to ensure that targets are always met.

Jacobs enforcement agents work closely with their clients and provide a team that deal with the client directly, along with numerous resources. As certified enforcement agents through the County Court, it can be ascertained that the agents are professionally trained. The enforcement agents are obliged to adhere to codes of practice and national standards and are also full members of the Civil Enforcement Association. They are fully trained to identify vulnerable cases, whilst simultaneously ensuring collections are maximised. When it comes to collecting Council Tax, Jacobs enforcement agents are looking to obtain your payment for their client in one form or another.

If your council tax arrears have got so bad that you are now concerned about the threat of Jacobs enforcement agents visiting your home, you may be feeling incredibly intimidated. When an enforcement agent visits your home, it is imperative that you fully understand your rights. If you do not recognise the rights you hold, you may be in danger of making an irreversible mistake. If there are Jacobs enforcement agents at your door, you do not necessarily have to let them immediately. It is only rumour that an enforcement agent can force their way into your home without your permission, or a warrant. Jacobs enforcement agents cannot force their way into your home, but must wait to be invited in by you personally. If you do allow them in, they may begin to claim your possessions in order to repay your debt.

However, if you are in Council Tax debt it is imperative to understand that once you have granted entry to a Jacobs enforcement agent once, they are permitted to re-enter your home again. This means that choosing to a let an enforcement agent into your home is not a decision that should be taken lightly. If you decide not to let Jacobs enforcement agents into your home, you are well within your rights to also reject them at a later date. Although, refusing the Jacobs enforcement agents entry into your home does not mean that they cannot take possessions that are outside your home. Items of value such as vehicles can be taken from your property and there is little you can do to stop this from happening.

The enforcement agents are bound by code of conduct to not force their way into your home in anyway. However, if your debt is bad enough a court warrant may be given. At this point an enforcement agent will be entitled to enter your home, without being granted peaceful entry. The enforcement agents will only use ‘reasonable force’. This means that the Jacobs enforcement agents will not go to unnecessary extremes in order to enter your home. The enforcement agents will not break any windows and will not use physical violence to get past you. Rumours regarding bailiffs using violence to enter your home are simply rumours that were born out of fear.

If you should come face to face with one of the enforcement agents from Jacobs, it is imperative that you try and arrange repayment with them directly. Dealing with the agents openly and honestly is one of the most efficient ways to pay your debt. If you are unable to pay the debt in full to the enforcement agents, you may have to negotiate a plausible repayment plan. The Jacobs enforcement agents remain within their rights to refuse your repayment suggestions. If their suggestions seem unreasonable, or impossible to achieve, it may be time to seek the help of a debt advisory service.

Council Tax Advisors have extensive experience of dealing with Jacobs enforcement agents. As a specialist debt advice Community Interest Company, CTACIC can help create a realistic repayment plan that works for you, your council and Jacobs enforcement agents. We will act as a buffer between you and any enforcement agents that arrive at your door by providing you with extensive advice and options. If you are currently struggling to deal with Jacobs enforcement agents, contact us here today.

A Summary Warrant and What to Do If You’re Notified of One

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If you’re struggling with council tax debt in Scotland there’s a chance you may eventually be met with a summary warrant. This could eventually mean that the authority can made deductions from other payments you may receive, but there’s a long way to go before things get to this stage. It’s important to be aware of the process leading up to a summary warrant being issued, and what to do if you ever encounter one.

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Council tax bills are usually sent out by April, and you have the right to pay by 10 instalments. The local authorities may accept weekly, fortnightly or monthly payments, and some may even give you a reduction in the total bill if you pay everything at once, at the beginning of the year. If it’s been a while since you paid an instalment of council tax then your local authority may issue you with a reminder, asking for payment within seven days.

If this period passes without you paying, you lose the right to pay by instalments and a full year’s council tax is then owed. If you don’t pay an instalment of council tax within 28 days of the due date, the local authority could apply to the sheriff court for a summary warrant to show you are liable to pay the arrears. However it also has to give you time to pay the debt off, so make sure you’re not asked for the money straight away. Now you should try to reach an agreement with the authority over repayment, and come up with a plan that can suit all parties. It’s advisable to come up with an arrangement you can stick to, as even paying little over a longer amount of time is better than not being able to keep up with payments.

If you can’t reach an agreement with the authority to pay off the debt, or you can’t keep up the payments, then the summary warrant can be enforced. This will mean that deductions can be taken from your income support, jobseeker’s allowance, employment and support allowance or wages. It could also see sheriff officers being sent round to seize goods to the value of the amount owed. However many of your possessions are protected from seizure, so make sure you brush up on the law beforehand. If you feel like the summary warrant was wrongly issued and that the incorrect decision has been taken regarding your council tax, you can make an appeal.

If you do want to make a complaint then you can write a letter to your local authority, and they should send you a reply within two months. If it doesn’t agree with you then you can appeal the decision to the valuation appeal committee. If it’s been two months and the local authority hasn’t responded to you, then you can appeal directly to the valuation appeal committee without waiting for a reply. For your appeal you must explain why you think an incorrect decision has been made, and then the committee will decide if you have a case. During this appeal you must continue to pay your original council tax bill.

Dealing with debt is hard, but there is help out there. If you’re ever unsure about council tax arrears or any other form of debt, get in touch with Council Tax Advisors. We offer a free, impartial service where experts can talk you through your issues and advise you about what to do next, coming up with a payment plan to suit you.

Mis-sold Packaged Bank Accounts: The New PPI?

By now, we’re all more than aware of Payment Protection Insurance (PPI). There have been advertising campaigns on television and the papers hoping to alert the public of the underhand tactics employed by banks that left thousands of people out of pocket, and by and large we have seen a returning of these mis-sold sums to account holders – whether for £50 or for £5000.

While many of us remained hopeful that the PPI scandal would be the last of these instances we’d encounter as members of the public for a long time, it has – perhaps predictably – not proved to be the case. Unfortunately, it seems that it is very much ‘out with the old, in with the new’ when it comes to banking crises, and the latest one is in similar vein to the last.

Mis-sold packaged bank accounts are now the scourge of the British public, and there are many industry insiders that think this may be a scandal that eclipses the last. If you currently pay (or have paid in the past) a monthly fee for your bank account, there are suggestions that you may be able to claim back money into the hundreds or even thousands of pounds.

With the amount of evidence that has been correlated in recent weeks, it appears that – much like PPI – these accounts have been mis-sold and as a result left large numbers of people with insurance that is essentially worthless. If you feel you may fall into the ever-expanding bracket of people that are beginning to claim back their hard-earned wages, it’s important you approach the process in the right way in order to ensure everything owed is returned. Here at Council Tax Advisors, our close knowledge of commercial and domestic financial regulations, we’re perfectly placed to help you do just that.

There are a number of tell-tale signs when it comes to the mis-selling of packaged bank accounts. Think back to the point of purchase and ask yourself a few questions, and your answers will tell you if you’re eligible for any reclaim.

Was I told it was a mandatory purchase?

The most common instance in these cases is that customers were told that the purchase was a compulsory one in order to receive a loan, product, benefit or mortgage from the bank. For people keen to secure these things, the threat of their application being declined on the basis of not having a policy such as this would have been too great a risk to ignore – instead, the purchase is made. Alternatively, this could have been added on without explaining that there are other, free alternatives that would have saved you the investment. This is also an instance of mis-selling.

Do the T’s & C’s state I’m too old for the account?

As with many other insurance policies, there are upper age limits that come into effect on packaged bank accounts, too. All staff who were charged with selling the policies will have been aware of this, but may have continued with the sale anyway. If you weren’t told of these age limit exclusions, it’s highly likely that you’ll be able to reclaim the money you will have paid into the scheme. This is also the case if you have an existing medical condition that may have jeopardised your eligibility. If this wasn’t checked, or even mentioned, you will have a case against the provider.

Was I pressured into purchase?

The unfortunate fact of the matter is that bank bosses have put their staff under immense pressure in order to secure sales of packaged bank accounts – something that again draws parallels with the PPI scandal. You could have had the wishes of the banks imposed on you in a passive aggressive manner, forcing you to buy the account. Think back, and if you felt these high-pressure tactics were implemented you will have an extremely strong case; in March 2013, this approach was actually made illegal by the government, meaning there is effectively a zero tolerance policy now in effect.

Was it added on without me knowing?

The easiest way to do this is simple – trawl through your old bank statements, and see if there are inconspicuous outgoings that you may have missed in the past. Amounts could range from £10 a month up to around £25, and could have been deceitfully added on by a salesperson desperate to increase their commission or through a bank error. Either way, you’ve got a case.

If any of the above apply to you, it’s more than likely that you’ve been mis-sold a packaged bank account. In order to ensure you are reimbursed properly, contact one of our experienced advisors for impartial and informative guidance to help you take the next step towards a successful reclaim.

How to Manage Electricity Bill Debt

If you are in electricity bill debt you could be in real danger of being entirely disconnected, without even having to go to court. You supplier could also be entitled to obtain a court warrant to enter your home and fit a pre-payment meter.  However, you should always receive a warning letter before either of these measures is put in place. If you are struggling with electricity bill debt, you may be wondering the best way to manage your debts to avoid being entirely cut off by your electricity company. Here is what we would recommend at Council Tax Advisors.

Who needs to pay the bill?

By law, the person who has to pay any electricity debt is the person who originally asked for electricity to be supplied. In the past, a few energy companies have demanded payment from anyone who was living in the house when the electricity was being used. The term was coined as ‘beneficial users’ and was used to hound those who were believed to be partially responsible for the debt. However, the courts now refuse to allow companies to pursue debts of this sort. In order to effectively manage the debt, you need to first establish if this is the situation you are in. If a company is trying to make you pay a debt that you believe you are not responsible for, you should always contact an energy authority.

Budget

As with any debt, the most effective way to eliminate the money owed is to budget your living costs. To prevent getting in to any further debt with your electricity providers, this is the living cost you can cut down straight away. There is a wide variety of actions you can take to cut down your electricity bills. Ensure that all of your lightbulbs are switched to energy saving equivalent, as these are famously most cost efficient. Try and turn off all lights or electrical equipment that is left on unnecessarily at the plug. You can even consider even more drastic measures such as using candles or banning unnecessary cosmetic appliances. With any luck, you should be able to do a lot to manage your debt this way.

Accept the pre-payment meter

If you are really struggling to make your electricity repayments, a pre-payment meter may actually be the best option. With the meter fitted, you will be obliged to pay a higher rate for your electricity that will automatically pay off your arrears and pay for your electricity in advance simultaneously. Although the measure may seem harsh to some, this may actually be the most effective method for those who are truly struggling to budget enough to make any repayments.

Suggest an amount

If you cannot afford the high rates put in place by your electricity supplier in order to make your repayments, you are entitled to suggest your own amount. If you are suffering financially with more than just your electricity bills, you may desperately need the rates to be decreased in order to make them plausible. However, based on how much you owe, your electricity provider does have the right to reject your offer.

Seek debt advice

If your repayment suggestion is rejected by your electricity company, it may be time to seek professional help. You could contact an electricity consumer body or Ofcom, which will review the case between you and your electricity company. However, if you feel your repayment issues are rooted in your own debt problems, contacting a free and impartial debt advisory service may be the best solution. At CTACIC, we will provide you with constructive and friendly advice to help alleviate the weight of debt. We can even help create the ideal repayment plan to help you get on track with your finances. Contact us today if you require free debt advice, from a community interest company who know exactly how to help.

How to Manage Gas Bill Debt

For some considerable time there has been a regressive rise in utility bills which have not taken job losses and static living wage levels into account. Taxpayers often find themselves powerless to combat larger payments to energy companies as they are heavily dependent on their energy for electrical devices and heating their home. Despite mass redundancies occurring during the global financial crash living costs have continued to increase, putting people’s economic stability at risk. Confidence in making regular payments on time has taken a battering. Fortunately, help is at hand at companies such as Council Tax Advisors. We offer our support for free.

Although energy prices have fallen recently, this is long overdue and some politicians have argued that the reductions are not drastic enough. Unemployment may be at a six-year low, but this does not mean that all things are rosy with people’s finances. Both bits of news should be welcomed, however they do not accurately illustrate the whole picture. Thousands contact debt advice companies such as ours and an alarming larger number stay silent. This allows the problem to grow and possibly spiral out of control. Here are some tips about how to deal with this burdening problem. Heating bills are rarely welcomed and cause real worry once a letter has been posted.

Cut Back Costs

Of course, this is easier said than done, but you can become more efficient with your heating by limiting the time you have it turned on. This doesn’t necessarily mean that you have to feel chilly, though. Heating your home for an hour in the evening can keep you warm in the winter months. If you still feel the cold then putting on a hat or a jumper can rapidly improve your mood. Having the heating on full blast all day is not energy efficient and will leave you with a hefty bill. If you have double glazing then more heat will be kept in your home and so less energy is needed.

Check Competitors

Visiting price comparison websites may not seem as though you’re taking appropriate action when tackling your debt, but this is an effective way of saving money. Once you find a cheaper deal it could save you hundreds of pounds each year from your utility bills alone. This added money can be used to write off a higher proportion of your debt and can be used for greater expense on food along with other necessities. Finding the best deal is one step forward in sorting out money troubles.

Contact CTACIC Today

Arguably, the most effective way of dealing with gas bill debt is by contacting our team or emailing us at help@counciltaxadvisors.co.uk today. We are an independent company who have experience of falling into debt ourselves so can not only sympathise, but relate to your arrears. Allowing this problem to grow will do nothing to reduce your debt or stress. We are only motivated by helping others, unlike payday loan companies who wish to make as much money as they can. Our services are free so you should contact us today to relieve economic and personal pressures.

Attachment of Earnings and Council Tax Arrears

As you will probably be aware of by now, when it comes to debt there are many grey areas that can be difficult comprehend in times of hardship. There are a huge number of cases with deal with each year that have resulted from creditors or local government bodies not communicating properly with members of the public, and attachment of earnings is a prime example of this.

If you find yourself in debt and have not been able to get yourself on a payment plan that suits both you and your creditor, there is every possibility that they may have already taken court action against you. For the most part, they come in the form of a County Court Judgement (CCJ) amongst other local bills, orders and warrants. This is essentially an official document that states the debt, however large or small, must be settled by a certain date. If it isn’t, the creditor has license to take further action to reclaim the monies that are owed to them.

Of course, this is a process than can take many forms. One of the most controversial of which is what is known as an attachment of earnings order. This could be issued to you for any number of things – credit debts, such as bank loans, hire purchase agreements and credit cards, are a main cause of this, just as is the case with rent and mortgage arrears. What people are less aware of, however, is that this can be applied to debts owed to government bodies, such as income or council tax.

This misconception is perhaps rooted in how we perceive the role of the government. Politicians in parliament are quick to constantly remind us that they are here to protect and serve the country, so when we find our wages are being taken out of our bank accounts by the representatives of these people is does not sit well with the majority of the population. Combined with a feeling of invasion of privacy, it is a recipe for frustration and confusion.

The attachment of earnings order stops money from your wages reaching your account, and instead your employer is instructed by law to ensure that a percentage of your money is redirected to your creditor. It’s worked out through a strict formula, meaning there is little room for negotiation once the order is in place. No other debts or outgoings are taken into consideration – making the order even more controversial – so your overall wage packet will be reduced by anything up to 40 per cent. For people whose income fluctuates due to the frequency of work (common for people on zero hour contracts or freelance workers, for example), the amount may change month on month.

Another factor people must be aware of is that the arrestment of earnings process can essentially last indefinitely. These may continue later down the line when all repayments have been made if you have ongoing maintenance payments that still need to be met, so it is always worth keeping in close contact with an experienced advisor to assist you as your circumstances change.

This is why is absolutely vital that when in these situations, you do not let council tax debts get this far. Here at Council Tax Advisors, we’ve got a team of financial experts on hand to ensure that you are equipped with knowledge that will prove invaluable later down the line. The solution is simple – get valuable advice, and get it now.

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Refresh Debt Services Ltd t/a Council Tax Advisors
Address : Milltown House, Milltown Industrial Estate, Warrenpoint, Co. Down, BT34 3FN

Refresh Debt Services Ltd is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority No 674160
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