What happens if you don't pay your council tax

Court summons

2. Court summons

If you don't pay your council tax or don't keep to an agreement to pay, we will issue you with a court summons.

If you have received a summons, call us straight away.

If you do not arrange to make full payment including costs, a liability order issued by the magistrate’s court will allow us to use other means to recover the debt.

Contact us


0113 376 0362
(Monday, Tuesday, Thursday 9am to 5pm, Wednesday 10am to 5pm and Friday 9am to 4:30pm)

Do I have to go to court to attend the hearing?

Most of the time, it’s not necessary to go to court. Over the phone we will try to agree a special payment arrangement, check your entitlement to benefits and investigate any unresolved query.

Likewise, if you feel you have a valid defence against a liability order being issued, we can also discuss this over the phone without you needing to attend court.

The only valid legal defences against a liability order are:

  • the council has not followed the procedures set down in law when trying to collect your council tax, or
  • you have paid all the overdue council tax within the time limit given on the last reminder or final notice sent to you

If you believe you have a valid defence against a liability order please contact us straight away so that we can look into the matter. We may then withdraw the summons.

How do I pay the amount shown on the summons?

How to pay your council tax

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