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If you cannot pay your council tax

 If you cannot pay your council tax, help may be available. 

Talk to your local council  

Contact your council as soon as you think you’ll have problems paying your council tax, or as soon as you miss a payment. They’ll let you know what you should do next. 

Your council may: 

  • let you pay your council tax in smaller amounts

  • check if you can get any discounts

  • find out if you’re exempt from paying council tax

Contact your local council

Aberdeen City Council Aberdeenshire Council Angus Council Argyll and Bute Council Clackmannanshire Council Comhairle nan Eilean Siar (Western Isles Council) Dumfries and Galloway Council Dundee City Council East Ayrshire Council East Dunbartonshire Council East Lothian Council East Renfrewshire Council Edinburgh Council Falkirk Council Fife Council Glasgow City Council Highland Council Inverclyde Council Midlothian Council Moray Council North Ayrshire Council North Lanarkshire Council Orkney Islands Council Perth & Kinross Council Renfrewshire Council Scottish Borders Council Shetland Council South Ayrshire Council South Lanarkshire Council Stirling Council West Dunbartonshire Council West Lothian Council

Money help and advice 

There are organisations that can help you with your money

Get advice on managing your debts from Citizens Advice Scotland

You can challenge your council tax band on the Scottish Assessors website if you think it's wrong

What happens if you miss a council tax payment 

If you owe the council money because you’ve missed one or more council tax payments, this is known as being in council tax arrears.  

If you cannot pay your council tax arrears, contact your council. They might be able to help.  

Council tax is a priority debt. Your council will send you a reminder letter letting you know how much you need to pay. You do not need to get the letter before you can pay your council tax arrears. You'll get 2 reminder letters before the council will take further action. 

If you cannot pay your council tax 

If you do not pay your council tax arrears after 2 reminder letters, the council can: 

  • add 10% to the amount you owe

  • stop you being able to pay council tax in instalments

  • ask a sheriff officer to take the money you owe from your earnings or bank account

Further information 

Get help with council tax arrears on Citizens Advice Scotland. 

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