Ensuring customers are not subject to unnecessary recovery action, additional costs or hardship

Gwyn Worth made this Freedom of Information request to Brent Borough Council

This request has been closed to new correspondence from the public body. Contact us if you think it ought be re-opened.

The request was successful.

Dear Brent Borough Council,

A council taxpayer who owes more than just the current year's liability runs the risk of incurring additional recovery costs through a further application for a liability order if payments which are intended for the current year's liability are allocated by the council's computer to the previous year's liability. This would most likely happen where a non specific payment is made and the computer software is set to automatically allocate these payments to the oldest year's debt.

Councils computer systems have the necessary flexibility to be set to allow non specific payments to be allocated to the arrears or the current year's liability.

I understand that the majority of billing authorities have their computer software set to ensure that their customers are not subject to unnecessary recovery action, additional costs or hardship, i.e. so non specific payments are allocated to the current year's liability.

How does Brent Council have its computer software set to deal with non specific payments. Current or oldest year's liability?

Yours faithfully,

Gwyn Worth

Richard Vallis,

Information request
Our reference: 8384298

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Dear Sir/Madam
 
Thank you for your information request. We will forward it to the
relevant department who will contact you shortly.
 
Brent Council
Brent Civic Centre
Engineers Way
Wembley HA9 0FJ
[email address]
 
NOTE: Please do not edit the subject line when replying to this email.

Richard Vallis,

Information request
Our reference: 8384298

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Dear Sir/Madam
 
Freedom of Information Act 2000
 
Thank you for your request for information that was received on 9 October
2017, as follows:
A council taxpayer who owes more than just the current year's liability
runs the risk of incurring additional recovery costs through a further
application for a liability order if payments which are intended for the
current year's liability are allocated by the council's computer to the
previous year's liability. This would most likely happen where a non
specific payment is made and the computer software is set to automatically
allocate these payments to the oldest year's debt.

Councils computer systems have the necessary flexibility to be set to
allow non specific payments to be allocated to the arrears or the current
year's liability.

I understand that the majority of billing authorities have their computer
software set to ensure that their customers are not subject to unnecessary
recovery action, additional costs or hardship, i.e. so non specific
payments are allocated to the current year's liability.

How does Brent Council have its computer software set to deal with non
specific payments. Current or oldest year's liability?
 
We are dealing with your request under the Freedom of Information Act 2000
and we aim to send a response by 6 November 2017.
 
In some case, a fee may be payable. If we decide a fee is payable, we will
send you a fee notice and we will require you to pay the fee before
proceeding with your request.
 
The Freedom of Information Act 2000 may restrict the release of some or
all of the information you have requested. We will carry out an assessment
and if any exemptions apply to some or all of the information then we
might not provide that information to you. We will inform you if this is
the case and advise you of your rights to request an internal review and
to complain to the Information Commissioner's Office.
 
We will also advise you if we cannot provide you with the information
requested for any other reason together with the reason(s) why and details
of how you may appeal (if appropriate).
 
Yours faithfully
 
 
Richard Vallis
Revenues & IT Client Manager
Chief Operating Officer
0208 9371503
[email address]
 
NOTE: Please do not edit the subject line when replying to this email.

Richard Vallis,

1 Attachment

Information request
Our reference: 8384298

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Dear Mr Worth
 
Please find attached our response to your request
Yours faithfully
 
 
Richard Vallis
Revenues & IT Client Manager
Chief Operating Officer
0208 9371503
[email address]

Dear Richard Vallis,

Thank you for confirming that 'non specific payments are allocated to the current year's council tax first, once cleared they are then allocated to any previous years balances'.

It is encouraging that Brent Borough Council is apparently mindful of the principles surrounding the appropriation of payments and implement them.

Yours sincerely,

Gwyn Worth

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