Persistent non-council tax payers given jail warning


Being locked up in a prison cell could be the stark reality for anyone who repeatedly refuses or neglects to pay their council tax.  

Arun District Council is proposing to ask the Court to commit those customers who don’t pay to prison.

Councillor Dudley Wensley, Deputy Leader of Arun District Council and Cabinet Member for Corporate Governance, said: “The Council doesn’t take the decision to ask Magistrates to send someone to prison who fails to pay their council tax lightly but it has previously done so and it will do so again.

“If you are worried about your finances people should get in touch with the Council as early as possible so that Arun can help to find a solution. Alternatively you can seek assistance from your local Citizens Advice Bureau (CAB).

“However, there are a very small minority of people who persistently refuse to pay their council tax, resulting in those who regularly pay having to potentially subsidise other important services that Arun District Council provides.

“Therefore, sometimes the Council is left with no alternative but to seek prosecutions for those who stubbornly refuse to pay their council tax.”

The maximum prison sentence that can be imposed by the Court for non-payment of council tax is 90 days.

For more information about council tax please visit the council tax page and for some tips of managing your debt please visit the debt advice page.

The Council also has a helpful booklet called ‘Managing Your Money’ available to download, which includes information about budgeting and contacting creditors to explain financial problems.