Serial Council Tax evader jailed after owing more than £4,000 in council tax

For many people being in debt for some time becomes a never ending state of being. The goal posts seems to be forever unrealistic. And after an extended time it becomes easier and easier to accept debt as a way of life and slowly begin to stick your head in the sand. However tempting this may seem it is imperative to keep focused in tackling, and also understanding, your debt.

The real danger is letting your debt grow while you’ve turned a blind eye. Many people do not realise that letting your council tax arrears get out of control can result in prison.

Bharat Patel from Edmonton was found guilty of not paying £4,843 in council tax between January 2007 and September 2011. Mr Patel had failed to appear at an earlier hearing but was then arrested and taken straight to court. He has been sentenced to spend 90 days behind bars.

Truthfully, prison is often a very rare outcome for cases that are taken to court. This does not change the fact that thousands of people are taken to court every year. This is a process which can be incredibly distressing for those in debt and feel incapable of ever keeping up.

So you’re beginning to find it increasingly difficult to manage your debt effectively or at all, creditors and bailiffs have less patience than you would like and to top it off you’re afraid to ask for help. In these instances acting indifferent or ignorant to your debt is your worst enemy. These are the times when a court case becomes more probable.

When it comes to debt, knowledge is power. You need to fully understand your debt – especially if you expect to be in it for any extended period of time. The services that are provided by Council Tax Advisors can help you make sure you know what help you are entitled to, how to face bailiff enforcement and different payment arrangements that can be made with your council.

When it comes to poor management of council tax arrears prison can be a very real threat. The more you evade and avoid the situation, the more likely you are to end up in a position not too dissimilar from Mr. Patel. It is vital you are aware of the steps that you can take to make sure this is never a reality for you.

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