Council Tax is a charge on a household property. Properties are placed into one of 8 bands. The band is determined by the property’s market value as of 1 April 1991. The band determines how much you pay.
Council Tax bills are issued on the assumption that there are 2 or more adults living in the property. In certain circumstances, however, some people are not counted when working out the number of occupiers so there may be discounts and exemptions.
The money we receive from Council Tax, together with Government grants and other fees and charges, enables us to provide benefits and services for the whole community.
Beware of bogus callers
An increasing number of taxpayers have been reporting occasions where they have been contacted by organisations or individuals offering reductions or refunds of Council Tax in specific circumstances.
If you receive telephone calls or a doorstep caller offering refunds or reductions in Council Tax and requesting bank or building society account details, credit card details, or request an administration fee or ’up front payment’ to secure a refund these will not be from us.
How we will use your information
As a Billing Authority for Sheffield, we collect, process and store personal information about you in order to administer and enforce Council Tax. We are authorised to do so under the Local Government Finance Act 1992 and the Council Tax (Administration and Enforcement) Regulations 1992. The processing of your information is necessary for compliance with our legal obligations contained in these Acts.
To carry out our duties, we will use information that you provide directly to us and also information that we are given by third parties (for example, previous house owners, landlords, estate agents etc).
We will usually only collect basic personal data about you, including your name, address and contact details. However, if you apply for a discount or exemption, or there is a dispute about the Council Tax liability for your property, we may need to collect additional information such as details of your household circumstances, or medical information.
If you choose to pay by Direct Debit, or we have obtained a liability order from the Court, we may also collect some financial information from you.
Failure to supply information to us within 21 days of us requesting it, or to notify us of a change which may affect your Council Tax, or to knowingly supply inaccurate information, could constitute a criminal offence for which we may take legal action against you.
Who we will share your information with
The Revenues and Benefits service in Sheffield is run by our third party contractor Capita plc, who process Council Tax data on our behalf. We may also share your information with other Council Services where the law allows us to.
If you owe us money, we will always try to contact you first to make an informal arrangement to pay off any debt. However, where this is unsuccessful, or if you have a history of late payments, we may pass your information onto Enforcement Agents or instructed Solicitors to recover any money owed.
The legislation also allows us to share your information (where appropriate) with other Billing Authorities, the Courts, the Valuation Office and the Valuation Tribunal Service, Employers and the DWP.
We participate in the Cabinet Office’s National Fraud Initiative, a data matching exercise to assist in the prevention and detection of fraud. We are required to provide particular sets of data to the Minister for the Cabinet Office for matching for each exercise. This data may then be passed on to other public bodies to investigate any matches.
We also carry out data matching exercises with credit reference agencies to ensure that discounts and exemptions are awarded correctly.
We will not share your information with any other organisations unless required to do so by law.
How long we will keep your information
We will only keep your information for as long as it is required by us or other regulatory bodies in order to comply with legal and regulatory requirements or for other operational reasons. In most cases, this will be a minimum of six years, and we are required to keep some data indefinitely.
What are your rights
You have rights under Data Protection law. For further details about your rights, the contact details of our Data Protection Officer and your right to make a complaint please see our Data Protection web page.