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Having trouble paying your council tax

Speak to us for advice on how to pay.

We want to help residents keep up to date with their council tax payments.

If you're having trouble paying your council tax, talk to us. We can help sign post you on how to find out if you are eligible for benefits or apply for reductions.

There are a range of local and national debt advice agencies you can contact:

If you continue to fail to pay council tax, we may use the law to recover arrears and any costs we incur.

Social housing tenants

If you are a social housing tenant, your landlord may provide welfare benefits advice service. Contact your landlord to check if they can help you if you are experiencing problem with debt.

The Debt Respite Scheme (Breathing Space)

On 4 May 2021, legislation called The Debt Respite Scheme (commonly referred to as Breathing Space) came into force. This government scheme is designed to give a person who meets the eligibility criteria time to receive debt advice and find a solution to their debt problems.

There are two types of breathing space:

  • A standard breathing space – where the creditor who is owed money by a person will need to place collection and enforcement on hold.
  • A mental health breathing space – where extra protections are provided for people who are receiving mental health crisis treatment.

To be placed into a breathing space you must meet the eligibility criteria and the debt advisor must Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) registered.

Lewisham Council is not an FCA registered debt advice agency, so cannot place any resident into a breathing space. However, we will receive notifications of breathing space where a debt advisor tells us they have placed a person into breathing space and they owe us money. When Lewisham Council receive a notification the appropriate holds will be applied based on the information provided to us.

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