Council Tax

Discussion in 'Finance, Property, Law' started by Peaches, Jun 23, 2006.

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  1. Wasn't sure if this was the right place to post this so excuse me if it wasn't.

    A bit of background -

    I live in the UK my husband is stationed in Germany (currently in Iraq) he lives in the Mess (classed as unaccompanied).

    I have just moved to our new house (not married quarters) and applied for single occupancy discount on the council tax and it has been refused.

    The reason for refusing it is they are claiming the house is his main residence which I disagree with, he lives in Germany not here, he is lucky if he spends more than a month in the UK.

    Does anyone know if they are correct or if I am?

    Should I be getting the single occupancy discount and who should I contact to get help with this?
     
  2. Had the same problem when i lived in Edinburgh and my wife and children lived the other end of the country. It was refused because

    a. We were married and
    b. my name was also on the deeds of the house.

    The frustrating thing was that i still had to pay CILOCT in Edinburgh and could not get a rebate.
    It is unfair, but there is nothing that can be done about it.
     
  3. Well folks do what everyone else does.Declare that you are separated and you are living on your own with your children then you will be treated as a single parent,It works
     
  4. In all of the twelve years I have lived at my address, I have never once been given the benefit of the single occupancy discount.

    Every year I get a bill for the full amount, multiple occupancy. Every year I pay the 75% of it. When they summons me for the balance, I tell them I live here on my own and have done for 12 years.

    They then say : Prove it.

    I say : You prove that I havent lived alone for the last year. How can I provide evidence of something that never happened and does not exist?

    They usually fcuk off after that...

    I hate this tax. £625 a year to empty my bins?

    Part time councillors on £21k a year for going to a few meetings on a monday evening? Its a scandal that the British public have yet to wake up to.
     
  5. The council will argue that your address is his 'sole or main residence'. Give them all the proof you have that he resides in Germany. The bottom line is though, where is the majority of his kit? Good luck. The longer you keep at them the better; they'll probably give in :wink:
     
  6. He has one suitcase of clothes at the house ready for R&R and the rest of his things are in Germany. I am trying to get the regiment to write a letter for me stating he is resident there and paying mess bills etc.
     
  7. From what you say his sole or main residence is in Germany. Stick with it. Like I say, give the Local Authority everything you can.
     
  8. Hi Peaches,

    An interesting post.

    I would be very interested in knowing whether the house you have purchased is in an area in which either you or your husband would be entitled to claim a local connection for the purposes of claiming social housing!

    I do not know if you have been following a case on another thread of a soldier with a back injury who is attempting to claim a local connection in order for the Council to house him on his discharge.

    My point is this.

    If, for example, you have decided to set up home away from an area from which you both originate, and the local authority claim, for the purposes of recovering Council Tax, that the full amount must be paid by virtue of their assertion that it is your husband's main residence, then that gives me the opportunity of seeking to reinforce an argument on his behalf that the guidance upon which they seek to rely to deprive him of social housing for having no local connection has an irrational basis when set against their assertion that a soldier with no local connection may be billed for the full rate of Council Tax by a local authority who seeks to assert that a soldier who purchases a house in the area has that area as their main place of residence.

    Looking at your post in general as it relates to your particular situation, I would be very interested to know what, if any statutory authority they seek to rely on. It seems to me from one or two posts that they seek to rely on an individual proving a negative, something which I doubt is statutorily authorised in this case. It is settled civil law that he who asserts must prove! It is a local authority that bears a burden of proof and not the individual.

    I would be very interested in seeing a verbatim copy of their letter posted on this thread
     
  9. If the publication is not conveniently marked RESTRICTED, is anyone able to PM me with the rules relating to CILOCT?

    This is in NO WAY an invitation for anyone to depart from the rules relating to authorised and unauthorised disclosure. However, if you are able to legitimately pass it on then please PM me.
     
  10. My wife and I are living in a Dutch hiring provided by the armed forces (not a military quarter) we still are paying council tax. The Military is not providing ANYTHING, our bins are emptied by the local Dutch, I am registered on the Dutch system for health,(I am the dependent) Police and fire brigade are all provided by the Dutch - So can anyone tell me why I am paying Council Tax. The RAF can't but I am hoping my MP back in the UK will be able to help - then again maybe not.
     
  11. Hi Iolis here is a copy of the letter -

    Dear.......

    Council Tax

    I refer to your completed application form for single person discount received by my office on 7 June 2006.

    Where there are two or more adults resident at an address I am unable to grant 25% discount. I understand that your husband is in the Armed Forces. I must advise you that where a person is only temporarily absent due to their work, they inted to return and keep possessions at an address, then that is designated their main residence - hence no discount is applicable.

    Main residence is not defined in the Council Tax legislation and therefore I have to look to pervious High Court judgements on the subject when determining a person's sole or main residence.

    I refer to a specific case known as the 'Anderton' ruling. It states that 'a person's usual dwelling, place or abode is the place where a person is habitually and normally resident apart from temporary or occasional absences of long or short duration.'

    This has a significant effect on the way I am required to make a judgement regarding sole or main residence. In particular it eliminates time as a decisive factor in making such judgements and it substitutes instead the consideration of the reasons why and individual spends time at tow or more residences.

    For the purposes of Council Tax legislation, a person’s sole or main residence is considered to be where his/her spouse is living, even if their employment causes them to spend long periods of time working elsewhere – even abroad.

    Consequently, I am required by law to state the full tax is payable from 18 May 2006. A bill is enclosed for your attention confirming the amout of Council Tax payable by direct dbeit.

    If you disagree with my decision you have a right of appeal. If you wish to appeal against my decision you must contact the Valuation Tribunal within 2 months of the date of this letter by writing to: ............

    I have corrected some of the mistakes in the letter that was sent to me, she couldn't get the amount of discount or year right!
     
  12. TJ, This seems to be the only way to not to get screwed by the system. As I and (now former) partner have discovered. This country is screwed at the point where you have to break your family unit up to survive financially.

    The raft of benefits to single parents really is quite amazing, if I didn't enjoy being a parent so much, we would have done it years ago!
     
  13. I tried writing to my MP (Labour) and he wasn't interested. I contested paying council tax whilst serving overseas in a non EU country but was threatened with court action by the council. I took legal advice but couldn't afford to persue it. The Anderton ruling was a case involving an RAF NCO who took Doncaster council to court over the matter of him having to pay council tax whilst living unaccompanied in a UK RAF base. The court ruled he must pay so all councils jumped on the bandwagon and make servicemen/women who have their own homes pay council tax. 3 cheers for the labour government!!!
     
  14. ViroBono

    ViroBono LE Moderator

    If you are in a Dutch hiring you are presumably paying CILOCT rather than Council Tax. The MOD will be paying the local authority (probably through some labyrinthine system), for the services they provide. With CILOCT you are paying a standard amount (the same wherever you are), irrespective of how much the Dutch authority's charges are.

    I was also stuffed when I tried to get a 'not main residence' discount for my house, which I had managed to spend less than a week at in a year, though the Council told me that if I could prove that I was paying Council Tax elsewhere they would reconsider. They refused to accept CILOCT, because it is not paid direct to a local authority, but to central government who then distribute it. It realy does seem that we are paying twice.
     
  15. TheBigUn I am guessing then that he was trying to claim single occupancy for the house?