500 face court action over unpaid rates

Mon 17 Jun 2019

Nearly 500 Vale households face being threatened with court action over the next few days because of unpaid rates bills, the Senior Constable has warned.

How Bailiwick Express reported an earlier rates warning

Final demands will be sent out this week and, unless paid promptly, parishioners will next face a legal summons taking them to Petty Debts Court for the arrears.

They will also have to pay the cost of the writ, which is an additional £57 – £114 in the case of unmarried and therefore joint householders – plus any amounts outstanding from previous years.

"We really don't like having to issue these threats," said Constable Richard Leale, "but the Douzaine is entrusted with the proper oversight of parish funds and paying rates is not optional – it's a legal requirement."

Not pursuing those who didn't pay was unfair on everyone else and, left unchallenged, simply meant every everyone else eventually having to pay more, he said.

"The Douzaine does everything it can to contain costs and to minimise rates bills. Having to chase people like this can actually increase what we have to charge people because of the extra work and cost of taking people to court," said Mr Leale.

"That's why it's so antisocial and why, reluctantly, we will take anyone to court who doesn't pay their rates."

  • In total, 4,697 rate demands were sent out this year and just under 500 remain unpaid to date.
  • More than £760,000 was collected in rates last year. What it was spent on can be found here.
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