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How to appeal against your Council Tax bill

If you think your Council Tax bill is wrong, tell your council immediately. Make sure you keep paying the bill unless you have made other arrangements with the council. You can also appeal against your bill.

What to do if you disagree

If you disagree with your council’s decision about the bill or your responsibility to pay Council Tax, you should contact the council to try to resolve the matter. After you’ve contacted the council, if the matter is still unresolved you may appeal to a valuation tribunal, an independent body that is separate from the council (which sets the bill).

When to appeal

You can appeal against the council's decision if you think:

  • the council is sending bills to the wrong person for your home
  • your home should be exempt from Council Tax
  • the amount of the bill is wrong, for example if you think you're entitled to a discount
  • the council hasn't reduced the bill for a disability

How to appeal

As a first step you should write to your council giving reasons why you think your bill is wrong. When you write, include your name and address and say which decisions you don't agree with. The council can then ask you for more information so it can make a decision.

The council may either:

  • decide that the bill is wrong and send you a new one
  • decide that the bill is right and explain why

Appealing to a Valuation Tribunal

When to appeal
If you think the council's decision is wrong or if you don't hear anything from the council within two months of writing to them, you can appeal to the 'Valuation Tribunal'.

There are time limits for appealing to the tribunal. These are:

  •  two months after the council told you its decision
  • four months from when you first wrote, if you hear nothing from the council

How to appeal to the Valuation Tribunal
You have to make your appeal in writing. Your letter to the Tribunal should explain what decision you're appealing against and why you disagree with it. If you're appealing because the council hasn't made a decision, you should tell the Tribunal that this is the reason for your appeal.

It may be possible for you and the council to explain your cases to the Tribunal in writing instead of having to attend a hearing. Otherwise, the Tribunal will get in touch with you to arrange a formal hearing and send you a leaflet explaining the procedures for the hearing.

Hearings don't usually last more than a day, and it won't cost you anything unless you decide to employ someone like a solicitor to present your case.

If the Tribunal agrees with you, the council will update your bill and adjust your monthly payments.

Where to get more information

You'll find information about appealing against your Council Tax bill in sections 30 to 32 of the leaflet 'Council Tax - a guide to your bill'.

You can also get free independent advice about appealing against your Council Tax bill from your local Citizens Advice Bureau.

Appealing against your Council Tax band

If you think your Council Tax valuation band is wrong, you need to contact the Valuation Office Agency (VOA).

To find out more, read the the leaflet ‘Council Tax - a guide to valuation banding and appeals’ and/or visit the VOA website below.

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