Council tax: Thieves help required

Council tax: Thieves help required

Postby smile2cheekily » Wed Nov 18, 2009 6:32 pm

Hi everyone,

I would greatly appreciate your suggestions, advice and comments on this council tax issue. It's a long complicated story, but for all your sakes I will try and condense it into an easy format.

-In Oct 2005 (roughly) my flatmate at my previous address moved out and a new flatmate moved in. Subsequently, the council was contacted of the change in writing and phone by myself, the old flatmate and new flatmate. The council informed me and my new flat mate we must still continue to pay council tax, which we continued to do as instructed. About three months later me and my new flatmate received an arrears notice from the council showing we had not paid council tax and were required to pay the arrears immediately. I contacted the council immediately and advised that we had continued to pay council tax providing evidence of such through cheque stubs and bank statements proving it had been paid.


I discovered that my former flatmate had approached the council for a rebate, which she was entitled to do, but the council had not changed the accounts over and gave my former housemate half of what was remaining in the account, which turned out to be mine and my new flat mates paid council tax. The council refused to take responsibility for their error! They could no longer contact my former flat mate and when I contacted her via her old mobile number, which is the only form of contact I had for her, she refused to pay back the money saying it was not her problem.


A disagreement ensued for 8 months, where I thought I was going to go crazy. Endless letters, phone calls, visits to the council office where I had a meeting and actually sat there for two hours showing a complete imbecile how to do basic mathematic calculation highlighting his error in accounting. I was assured this would be resolved and obtained in writing a slip that this would be the case and of our meeting at the council office that day was the end of the matter.


My flatmate and I attended the court and on the morning of our attendance the same imbecile I had spent two hours with in the meeting showing how to do mathematics sat there and threatened me with the option that if I paid the amount in full now we will not be hauled into court, where we would be found guilty and subsequently have to pay court fees. My flatmate wanted to pay he was so terrified, I was so angry I was like no I'll speak to the magistrate. In conclusion the magistrate advised the council of their error telling them to resolve the problem. Two months later a council representative visited the flat and I had to take him through the calculations because he still couldn’t figure it out and still believed we owed them money.


My flatmate and I attempted to get reimbursement for costs incurred from the council and after six months of letters and phone calls, were completely ignored with no response what so ever. (why is that not surprising) it seemed like a monumental task and we just gave up in sheer frustration


My flatmate decided to move out and unbeknown to me had not been paying his half of the council tax for the last six months, claiming his expenses back through non payment. I didn’t cotton on because I was paying my half and for what ever reason the council failed to send any demand notices. A new flatmate moved in and neither of us paid council tax as the demands had started coming in from the council from my previous flatmates unpaid council tax and if we paid they would just use our money to pay what he owed. While I tried again and again to advise the council, this is not my tax and I am not paying, go after him, things just went from bad to worse with them coming after me.

I RESOLVED THE PROBLEM – I moved out of the flat! Not paying what my last flat mate and I owed. I moved into a share house which is all inclusive of bills with my name on nothing, which for the last two years has been great, until now

Earlier this year I started receiving demand notices from a debt collector, which I proceeded to send back addressee not known, or not at this address return to sender. A bailiff showed up at the door two months ago, which upset my landlords, as I rent a room from them only. This bailiff according to my landlord was asking all manner of questions, even asking my very elderly landlord if we were married or he was my partner because he would be jointly liable and they could take his property as well. My landlord advised me that they were getting phone calls from this debt collector asking for me. I had never given my landlords phone number, which is separate from mine to anyone, so this bailiff has definitely breached the data protection act by locating my landlords name and personal home phone number and harassing them with telephone calls, unfortunately they have hidden their phone number and ask to speak with me or questions about me without identifying themselves, my landlords have never admitted I am at the property.

I attempted to contact the council numerous times who did not respond both electronically and by phone. On November 13th, 2009 I received a very threatening
letter demanding that if immediate payment was not made a bailiff could enter the property and take my goods. On November 14th, 2009, I sent a letter using this sitestemplate, in the form of a notice to cease harassment. As yet I haven’t heard from them. I have also received a letter from the council not specifying the amount owed,just that I am joint liable for council tax at the property from November 1st, 2006 to March 31st, 2009. I have looked on your site but can’t seem to locate a template to respond but would appreciate your direction or some suggestions.

1. What do I say if the bailiff returns to the property? Apart from calling the police if he tries to gain entry to seize my landlords belongings because my
room comes fully furnished andd they would be removing someone else’s belonging’s.

2. Can I instigate an action for breach of the data protection act for the bailiff illegally gaining my address details and my landlords private number.

3. Can I threaten the council for failure to pay reimbursement of costs from 2006 plus interest if they pursue this or should I do this on top of their

4. I could really use moral support on this issue because they are very threatening and I am more concerned for my elderly landlords, especially upsetting them.

5. Is there some licensing body for bailiffs which regulations and laws to behave under, because they have breached my confidentiality by discussing the issue with my landlord. I am sure they have broken other as well

6. Due to opening the letters from the council addressed to me as on my birth certificate, can I now not claim fmotl and take the appropriate action?

I would greatly appreciate your help on this issue, many thanks

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Re: Council tax: Thieves help required

Postby jonboy » Wed Nov 18, 2009 7:37 pm

How did they find out where you live? :gasp:
"Reason is the life of the law; nay, the common law itself is nothing else but reason. The law which is perfection of reason" Sir Edward Coke 1552-1634.


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Re: Council tax: Thieves help required

Postby Jim » Wed Nov 18, 2009 8:40 pm

Answers to your questions:

1) Don't open the door. If you really must, speak to them from an upstairs window. Tell them to put it in writing.

2) Possibly. Ask yourself how the bailiff got your address, though. Has your landlord added your name to the electoral register at his property for example?

3) Possibly. Get your facts straight first, though. Write down a timeline of events leading up to today (and where you want events to lead to in the future :wink: ) Send the council a Notice of Understanding and Intent that says "This is what's happened so far. This is what's going to happen next. How do you like them apples?"

4) Aww there there. Everything's going to be just fine. You'll see.

5) Bedford Borough Council's Bailiffs Code of Conduct is here. I'm sure you can find one more appropriate for your area with not too much digging involved.

6) You have the right to change your mind about anything at any time (Article 18 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights)

Disclaimer: The above information is provided for entertainment and education purposes only and is not advice.


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Re: Council tax: Thieves help required

Postby smile2cheekily » Thu Nov 19, 2009 7:59 am

Dear Jon Boy & Jim,
Thank you for your responses.
Firstly, I don't know how they got my address, I certainly didn't give it too them and neither did my landlords. No Jim, I am definitely not on the electoral role,
made sure of that one! I would never vote for someone to control me, especially the morons we have running the country at present. They have definitelt used
some form of survelliance, CCTV, or breached the data protection act to get the information, it is now just proving it. Thanks for the moral support, this is going to be another long road, unless I move and start again. Thanks for the code of conduct from council, I will check out the local ne in my area. Will keep you updated.
Many thanks,
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