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View Full Version : Can Council collect Council Tax twice on same property?



LucyLL
18-03-2010, 19:35 PM
Hi all,

It's been a long time since I posed a question, hope you can help me.

I rented my house out 18 months ago to two people on individual AST's. I informed the Council at the same time that I was leaving the property and that it was being let out so could they send the relevant CT forms. The council acknowledged receipt of this communication but nothing more.

Four weeks ago I was advised that bailiffs were trying to enter my house to enforce payment of Council tax which hadn't been paid since I left. The tenant agreed to pay the Council tax in installments throught the Council's designated debt collection and has one installment to go.

The Council sent me a bill for the whole of the Council tax period due stating that as I was the owner of a HMO property I was liable under 1993/1994 Council tax regs and that they were going to release the tenant from his liability.

The crux of the matter is: they have collected all but the final installment from the aberrant tenant. He has insisted to me (I believe him as I have had the information corroborated) that he has not been reimbursed any of the monies following the Council's 'releasing' him from his liability and installing liability on to me.

I wrote to them asking them to clarify the situation with regard to whether they could claim basically double Council tax on the one premises. They replied to the effect that I remain liable under the regulations above, that they decline to tell me anything about whether they have repaid the tenant other than the fact that they have 'closed' his liability and have failed to answer regarding the double Council tax question. - What does that mean?

Not sure how to take this. The Council appear to be applying themselves into pulling a double collection for the total annual amount on the property, which I can't really believe they are entitled to. Anybody got any ideas on how to deal with this? Before I realised that the Council were 'declining' to comment etc, I was going to suggest that the easiest thing to do would have been to reimburse my tenant and then he could give me the monies which I could pay in under my percieved liability, as the (now repentant) tenant and I are both very keen to see the back of this episode.

Thanks

havensRus
19-03-2010, 07:02 AM
I rented my house out 18 months ago to two people on individual AST's. ......
The Council sent me a bill for the whole of the CT period due stating that as I was the owner of an HMO property (don't know why they think it's an HMO property?) I was liable under 1993/1994 CT regs and that they were going to release the tenant from his liability.


You rented out rooms on separate ASTs, rather than the whole house. Property therefore deemed as House in Multiple Occupation.

Therefore, council is correct in going after you for the council tax.

How come you never received the bills that would have been sent to you at the property? Did you ascertain that any was sent, and can council provide copies? Your tenants obviously didn't pass on the letters until problems arose.

You would have saved yourself hassle if you had done the transfer properly to the new tenants names. There was probably a visit to the house by an official, or the tenants themselves would have had to inform the council that they were on separate ASTs. So, someone is not telling the whole truth.


Hi all,
The crux of the matter is: they have collected all but the final installment from the aberrant tenant. He has insisted to me (I believe him as I have had the information corroborated) that he has not been reimbursed any of the monies following the Council's 'releasing' him from his liability and installing liability on to me.

I wrote to them asking them to clarify the situation with regard to whether they could claim basically double CT on the one property. They replied to the effect that I remain liable under the regulations above, that they decline to tell me anything about whether they have repaid the tenant other than the fact that they have 'closed' his liability and have failed to answer regarding the double CT question. - What does that mean?


It means they will hound you till you pay, and now refuse to answer the question about collecting tax twice for same property.



Before this latest council answer, I was going to suggest that the easiest thing to do would have been to reimburse my tenant and then he could give me the monies which I could pay in under my percieved liability, as the (now repentant) tenant and I are both very keen to see the back of this episode.


not sure that makes sense - you give him money, he gives you same money back?? Unless of course you mean the council to reimburse tenant, and you collect the money off him and pay it?? Yes.

But if your T will not admit to being reimbursed, that won't work will it, and he's not admitting anything is he?

Get him to sign a third party authorisation letter, giving the council the permission to speak to you regarding the claim, and maybe they'll tell you then whether or not T has been reimbursed. Its up to you both to sort it out, and calling him aberrant and repentant isn't going to do it.

There are responsibilities that come with being a Landlord ....

Since the rent T was paying did not include council tax, you could bill him for it, and he will have to own up to being reimbursed and pass the money to you, or find the money somehow.

and whilst you are at it, you might want to write a letter of complaint to the Head of Benefits, and Customer Service and ask about the double CT.

LucyLL
19-03-2010, 09:07 AM
How come you never received the bills that would have been sent to you at the property? Did you ascertain that any was sent, and can council provide copies? Your tenants obviously didn't pass on the letters until problems arose.

Tenant hid the bills. Completely agree it is up to the Landlord to sort this out, up to this point I was one of those landlords who put a lot of faith into the kind of tenant who doesnt deserve that - lesson learned.

It means they will hound you till you pay, and now refuse to answer the question about collecting tax twice for same property.

Yes they weren't going to back down. I gave a third party authorisation to speak to the council and get more details and it transpires the tenant they were pursuing also owes them monies from previous to 2006, this is the reason they were being obstinate about refusing to answer why they were hanging on to his money

not sure that makes sense - you give him money, he gives you same money back?? Unless of course you mean the council to reimburse tenant, and you collect the money off him and pay it?? Yes. Yes meant the council reimburse him and I collect the monies from the tenant, and pay the liability under my name

But if your T will not admit to being reimbursed, that won't work will it, and he's not admitting anything is he?
fortunately he admitted it

Get him to sign a third party authorisation letter, giving the council the permission to speak to you regarding the claim, and maybe they'll tell you then whether or not T has been reimbursed. Its up to you both to sort it out, and calling him aberrant and repentant isn't going to do it. I agree, its up to the landlord and hard lesson to learn but worth it for the experience :(

Since the rent T was paying did not include council tax, you could bill him for it, and he will have to own up to being reimbursed and pass the money to you, or find the money somehow. Yes this was a line I was considering

and whilst you are at it, you might want to write a letter of complaint to the Head of Benefits, and Customer Service and ask about the double CT.[/QUOTE] Seriously considering taking them to task on their method of using the most recent liability order to pay off the pre 2006 one

Thanks for your reply, and I am suitably more aware of the HMO CTax regs. Just to update I was lucky enough to have the support of a professional associate who undertook dealing as a third party on this matter and the Council in the light of this have agreed to reimburse the tenant who has agreed to pay me.

It is a lesson for the landlord to learn.