What happens if you don't pay your Council Tax

Find out about the legal process we follow if you don’t pay your Council Tax and how we can help you.

We can spread your payments over 12 months instead of the usual ten payments. You should also check if you can get:
If you need help with managing finances, you can get free debt advice from the following organisations:


If you don’t pay your Council Tax by the dates shown on your bill you will get a reminder. If you still do not pay, you risk getting a court summons and charges added on top of the outstanding amount.

Call us on 01983 823901 immediately if you have trouble making your payments to discuss how we can help.

Court summons

If you get a court summons because you haven’t paid your Council Tax, the court case costs will be added to your Council Tax bill.

We will also ask the court to grant us a liability order to allow us to collect any unpaid Council Tax through other methods.

We won’t apply for a liability order if:

  • the outstanding charge and costs are paid in full before the hearing
  • you bring your account up to date and set up a direct debit for future payments before the hearing.

Further action

If you are unable to pay in full at this point, we can consider a payment arrangement based on your circumstances.

You can find more about what happens if you don't pay your Council Tax at GOV.UK.​