Support for residents and companies struggling with council tax and business rates
Date published: 21 August 2020
Councillor Allen Brett, Leader of Rochdale Council, says "If you're struggling to pay, please get in touch with us"
Help is available for anyone struggling to pay council tax or local firms who have fallen behind on business rates payments, Rochdale Borough Council is reminding residents.
To avoid the risk of court action, the council is asking residents or businesses having financial difficulties to get in touch to discuss their situation.
Council leader Allen Brett said: “If you're struggling to pay, please get in touch with us and we’ll do our best to help. I know that as well as the health concerns we all have, many have financial worries due to being furloughed, restrictions on work and job losses.
“We want to help those who may be worried about paying their bill and make sure as much as possible that this doesn’t add to people's worries. We may be able to create a new payment plan or agree to pause your payments until a later date. We’ll also be able to see if you qualify for any benefits or schemes.
“For business rate payments, we could look at a new payment plan, extending payments until March instead of January, for example.”
Councillor Brett added: “It’s important we collect outstanding debt to make sure we can continue to provide valuable front line services but we are not in the business of causing unnecessary anxiety or distress for people who find themselves in a difficult position and we will work with them to find a solution that works for all.
“In terms of enforcement we are targeting those who won’t pay rather than those who can’t, but if you don’t contact us and default on payments we will take action which will involve the issue of a Magistrates Court summons.
“This is why it is so important to get in touch now. We understand some vulnerable people will need additional support in dealing with their financial affairs and we ensure such cases are handled sensitively and responsibly.”
Anyone experiencing difficulties paying should contact the authority immediately to avoid possible legal action.
For council tax help:
- phone 0300 303 8870
- visit www.rochdale.gov.uk/counciltax
For business rates assistance:
- phone 01706 926170
- visit www.rochdale.gov.uk/businessrates
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