Isitfair Council Tax Benefit interest rates must be brought up-to-date
Isitfair Council Tax Benefit interest rates must be brought up-to-date

I am receiving e mails and telephone calls from our members regarding the payment of council tax over twelve months instead of ten.  These members are people who usually pay their council tax regularly and on time. 

Some pensioners and people on low incomes have asked Isitfair what they should do, having asked their councils to accept 12 instalments, and having been refused that option.  Write to your council, or ask to see the head of benefits, please do not rely on the woman in reception to say that ‘it's not allowed’.  If your paying record has been good in the past, there is no real reason to refuse your request.  I would have thought that receipt over twelve months was a better option that taking another pensioner to court for non payment

I have to say that our council is very sympathetic and ‘providing they get the tax’ will help you as best they can.  If they have no problem then why have others? Please don’t tell me it is a ‘jobsworth’.

The Local Government Act of 1992 states that councils can collect 10 or 12 instalments or even 52 – most of them insist on 10 payments. Time for them to show that they have a heart and to allow hard pressed council tax payers the choice in these unusually testing times

The present financial climate is putting a strain on many pockets where interest has been relied upon to produce a living income. The Government continues to use figures that are just a joke.  One Pound per Hundred Per Month interest and if you are not a pensioner, that rises to Two Pounds Per Hundred Per Month for others. I wish!!! Savings over £16,000 do of course, prevent you from claiming Council Tax Benefit. This ridiculous perceived interest rate must be brought down to a figure matching those rates truly available. If there has to be a limit on savings, then Sir Michael Lyons suggestion of £50,000 or even more, should be introduced immediately to alleviate some of the pain - until a fairer system is introduced.  Not that the income from that will be of much help. One thousand pounds left in a current account last month attracted six pence interest, this month it will be even less.

None of us wants to fall into the pit of benefits, but if the present situation is not dealt with, I can see thousands more having to apply for help, having been forced to spend their meagre savings which they have relied upon to maintain their homes.

The Government continues to spend, spend, spend while the needy are faced with a bill that, no matter what they may say, for many has risen by nearly 5% this year.  Not just this year, but year on year, on year.  For some of us our council tax will have almost tripled since its inception in 1993.

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