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Council Tax arrears policy & breakdown of debt collection agencies

Sean made this Freedom of Information request to Renfrewshire Council

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Dear Renfrewshire Council,

I request following information regarding Council Tax arrears. Please provide this for the most recent 3 financial years.

1) Renfrewshire Council policy document(s) on Council Tax arrears.
2) Total number of Council Tax arrears/debts that were passed to Debt Collection Agencies / Sheriff Officers, per year.
3a) Names of Debt Collection Agencies / Sheriff Officers.
3b) Number of Debts passed to each, per year.
3c) Value (£) of Total Debt transferred to each, per year.
3d) Payment (£) received by Renfrewshire Council from each of (3a), per year.
4) Minimum age of arrears/debts before transfer to Debt Collection Agencies / Sheriff Officers.

Yours faithfully,

Sean

Renfrewshire Council

1 Attachment

Dear Sean,

Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act 2002 Request

Information Requested

Renfrewshire Council received your request for information on 14 April
2016.  You wrote:

1) Renfrewshire Council policy document(s) on Council Tax arrears.

Response: Council Tax is recovered in terms of The Council Tax
(Administration and Enforcement) (Scotland) Regulation 1992 amendment No.2
Regulation 2000.

No formal policy document covers this. As the Council does not hold
recorded information falling within the scope of your request, I am
providing notice under Section 17 of the Freedom of Information (Scotland)
Act 2002 that the Council does not hold the information requested and so,
is unable to comply with this aspect of your request.
       

2) Total number of Council Tax arrears/debts that were passed to Debt
Collection Agencies / Sheriff Officers, per year.

Response:
2013/14        29,895
2014/15        29,364
2015/16        27,972

Figures are based on summary warrants granted which is the stage
immediately before the debts are passed for collection.  Using this method
reduces instances of figures being overstated for debt which has been
passed and recalled multiple times although in rare instances debts may
have been paid in the short intervening periods.  Figures include debt
owed by customers on passported benefits.  Recovery of these debts is
generally placed on hold by the sheriff officers.

3a) Names of Debt Collection Agencies / Sheriff Officers.

Response: Walker Love Sheriff Officers

3b) Number of Debts passed to each, per year.

Response:
2013/14                29,895
2014/15                29,364
2015/16                27,972

3c) Value (£) of Total Debt transferred to each, per year.

Response:
2013/14                £14,535,715.37
2014/15                £14,676,772.30
2015/16                £14,736,524.27

3d) Payment (£) received by Renfrewshire Council from each of (3a), per
year.

Response:
2013/14                £5,714,100.14
2014/15                £5,572,983.29
2015/16                £5,543,175.18

4) Minimum age of arrears/debts before transfer to Debt Collection
Agencies / Sheriff Officers.

Response: Minimum age is approximately 6 weeks from instalment due date

I hope this information is of interest.

Review Procedure

If you are dissatisfied with the way in which the Council has dealt with
your request, you are entitled to require the Council to review its
decision.  A copy of the Council’s review procedures is detailed in the
attachment below.

Yours sincerely,

Joseph Bartoletti
Records Manager
Finance & Resources
Tel: 0141 618 5149
[email address]

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