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Frequently Asked Questions

Economics and finance

The power to do this is at the discretion of the Council and the current policy at OWBC is not to offer such a discount. This decision was taken as it was felt that to allow a discount would disadvantage those who did not have the means to pay in full rather than by instalments, and the cost of the discount would have to be met by all Council Tax payers as it would not be covered by the increase in cash flow.

No, you cannot get interest on overpaid Council Tax. There is no provision in law to allow it so it would be illegal for the council to pay it.

No, if you stop paying, we are obliged to commence recovery action against you. Your liability to pay Council Tax is not affected by provision of local authority services.

You should contact the local authority responsible for providing the service and say why you are unhappy. You can pursue the matter through the Council’s complaints procedure if necessary, and ultimately involve your local Councillor and/or the Ombudsman as appropriate.

Yes. The Council Tax Regulations state that payment is still due irrespective of any appeal or benefit claim that may be outstanding. This is because there are separate legal avenues for pursuing different outstanding matters.

The Valuation Office Agency (VOA) , which is a Central Government Agency, is responsible for allocating a Council Tax banding to all homes in England, for maintaining the Council Tax valuation lists, and for dealing with banding queries. You can find more information on how Council Tax bands are allocated and you can check the banding of your property, on the VOA website.

You may be entitled to Council Tax Support, or qualify for a status discount or an exemption from Council Tax.

For further information please contact us or visit our web pages on Council Tax Support.

The Council’s preferred method of payment is direct debit, but it also offers a wide variety of other payment methods. For details please see the back of your Council Tax bill or visit our Payment Options webpage.

The Council sets the standard level of Council Tax (called the band D tax level) in February/March each year. Each home is in one of eight valuation bands A to H based on the property’s capital value as at 1 April 1991. The actual tax paid depends on which band the property is in.

Yes, provided that you pay in advance of your instalment date not in arrears e.g. if your instalment date is 1 April you should pay that instalment on 28 March but not on 28 April. This way, you still only pay the same monthly amount (but a few days in advance) and you will then have January and February when you do not have to pay an instalment.

Please contact the Business rates section at the Council who will advise what details are required

If your house has been extended or changed prior to you buying it, but since it was originally valued and banded, it will only be re-valued and issued with a new band when a material change takes place. The transfer of ownership of a property is classed as a material change.

Council tax property banding is decided by the Valuation Office - a separate Government body. If you disagree with your band or would like to query it, please contact the Valuation Office direct on Leicester 0300 050 1501. Further details can be found on their website.

Please inform the Business Rates section at the Council immediately and supply appropriate documentary evidence to support the revised dates

In the first instance, please make your request in writing or send an email to the Business Rates section at the Council. Documentary evidence may be required for retrospective periods. For further information please contact the Business Rates section.

With effect from the 1 April 2017, no empty rates will be charged if the property is empty and any of the following apply:

Rateable Value is less than £2,900.

The property is a Listed Building.

The ratepayer is a charitable organisation or a registered Community Amateur Sports Club (CASC).

The ratepayer is bankrupt or in liquidation.

The ratepayer is a company in administration.

The ratepayer is entitled to occupy as an executor of a deceased person.

Occupation of the property is prohibited by law.

In addition to the above, if the property description is either workshop, warehouse or factory, the ratepayer will be entitled to a six month exemption from rates. After this period ends, full rates will become payable as if the property was occupied.

If the property is empty but does not fall within any of the above full or partial exemptions, full rates will become payable after an initial period of three months. During this initial 3 month period, no rates are payable.

For further information please contact the Business Rates section.

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