Paying your Council Tax
How much will I pay?
The amount of Council Tax you pay depends on:
- The valuation band of your property
- Where you live (Winchester town or in a Parish)
- Any discounts, exemptions or reductions you are entitled to
- Any award you are entitled to under the Council Tax Reduction scheme
How do I pay?
At the start of each financial year or when you move into a property you will receive your Council Tax bill showing your monthly instalments.
Direct Debit saves you time and is the most cost effective payment method for the Council.
Go to Manage your Council Tax online to set up a Direct Debit. You will need your bank details and your Council Tax account reference number that starts with a '5'.
You can chose a payment day of the 5th, 15th or 25th of the month (or nearest working day afterwards).
Other methods of payment
If you are not paying by Direct Debit your instalments will be due on the 1st of the month.
- Council Tax online payment
- Touch-Tone telephone system on 01962 848 512 and have your Council Tax reference number and debit card handy.
- Standing Order. Please call the Revenues' Section.
- In Person. Payment Kiosks are available in our Reception at Winchester City Council’s offices on Colebrook Street, Winchester. We are open Monday to Thursday 8.30am - 5.00pm and Friday 8:30am – 4:30pm. You will need your Council Tax reference number.
- "Your Winchester" mobile phone app. Download for your device now:
We do not accept Credit Card payments
Having difficulty paying your Council Tax
The first thing you should do is contact the Revenues' Section. We may be able to rearrange your instalments to make them more manageable. We can also tell you about any discounts or other reductions you may be entitled to. If you are on a low income, you may be entitled to Council Tax Reduction.
The Money Advice Service (MAS) is an independent service set up by the government to help people manage their money better.
Citizens Advice – 03444 111 306
Christians Against Poverty (CAP) – 0800 328 0006
Frontline Debt Advice – 07502 432410
Council Tax recovery
What is a Liability Order and what happens next?
If you do not pay the amount on the summons before the hearing date, your case will be taken to the Magistrates' Court.
We will ask the Magistrates to issue a Liability Order against you which enables the Council to collect Council Tax arrears in a number of ways, it also adds £110.00 costs to your account.
You do not have to attend the court hearing if you do not want to dispute your liability. The liability order can be issued even if you are not present.
if a Liability Order is obtained it is better to make a payment arrangement than for the Council to proceed with one of the recovery options below.
- To request information
You are required by law to give details of your employment and any benefits you receive. We will send you a form to fill out with your income and expenditure details.
- Attachment of Benefit
We can ask The Department for Work and Pensions to take money direct from your Jobseeker's Allowance, Income Support, Universal Credit, Pension Credit or Employment Support Allowance.
- Attachment of Earnings
- We can order your employer to take deductions from your earnings until the debt is repaid. Your employer is required by law to comply. They can charge you £1 each time they make a deduction.
- Use of Enforcement Agents
We employ external agents to collect Council Tax arrears from the companies Ross & Roberts Ltd, Rossendales Ltd and Dukes Bailiffs Ltd. They will try to make a payment arrangement with you or to find out your income details. They will give you details of the fees that you will have to pay them. They may ask to enter your home to make a list of the goods you own and could then return later to remove and sell those goods. Always remember to ask for identification when someone calls to your door. Please note that Enforcement Agent fees can be significant.
Winchester City Council can start these proceedings against you.
- Charging Order
We can apply to the County Court for a Charging Order if you own a property. When the property is sold we would receive the money you owe. You must owe us at least £1000 for this to be an option.
- Committal to Prison
We can summons you back to the Magistrates' Court to attend a committal hearing. The Magistrates' will examine your means (income and circumstances) now and at the time of the arrears. The Magistrates' may decide that you should have paid the debt and could issue a warrant of commitment, placing you in prison for up to three months. They may suspend the imprisonment if they wish to make a payment arrangement with you (suspended order).
It would be wise to contact us before your arrears reach this stage.
- To request information