Annual notification of Council Tax

Council Tax is a local tax, which is charged on domestic properties or dwellings.

Want to pay your Council Tax bill?

You can pay your bill by Direct Debit. You can set your Direct Debit up online or you can download a form which needs to be completed and returned to us. You can also make an automated payment by debit or credit card.

Do you have a Council Tax bill?

If so you can view the details online using the 'My Account' link above.

Your Council Tax bill

The money raised from Council Tax is used to help pay for spending on services such as education, Social Services, highways and refuse collection.

It is also used to pay towards the cost of the police, passenger transportfire and civil defence, pensions authority and spending in the borough's parishes.

For details of how your council tax contributes to the provision of the services provided by Barnsley Metropolitan Borough Council view your council tax leaflet.

We are required to 'levy and collect' Council Tax in respect of the dwellings in our area by:

  • Setting an annual charge each year
  • Issuing a demand notice together with accompanying information
  • Including on the demand notice certain assumptions about any discounts allowed any reductions for disabled persons and other matters specified in the regulations
  • Providing instalment payments, normally payable over ten payments, the first being due not less than fourteen days from the issue of the demand notice

The bill is made up of two parts of which 50% of the charge relates to the 'property element' and the remaining 50% relates to the 'person element' based on the use of the dwelling. The 50% personal element is calculated on the basis that two or more people live in the property.

The standard amount of Council Tax payable on a domestic property depends upon the property banding determined by the Valuation Office Agency and the number of people who live there.

For details of the council tax charge set in your area see our Council Tax charges page.

Council Tax banding

Properties are placed into one of eight valuation bands. These range from band A to band H, and are based on the value of the property.

Full details of property bandings in England and Wales are available on the Valuation Office Agency website, who set the property bandings. Further information regarding Council Tax can also be found on the site.

Who is liable for Council Tax?

Regulations specify the person who is responsible for the payment of Council Tax and this will normally be the person occupying a property as their main home. More than one person can be liable for payment and in such circumstances each person would have a joint and several liability for payment and so bills are issued in joint names. There are some exceptions where the responsibility for payment of Council Tax rests with the owner of the property.

A strict 'hierarchy' of liability to pay has been established by legislation. The person liable to pay Council Tax on a dwelling is the person who ranks highest on the following list:

  • A resident freeholder (the owner of an owner-occupied property)
  • A resident leaseholder (including assured tenants)
  • A resident statutory secure tenant
  • A resident licensee
  • A resident (including a squatter)
  • The owner (where a dwelling has no residents)

A 'resident' is a person aged 18 or over who lives in a dwelling which is their sole or main residence.

Sole or main residence

In most cases a person will have only one residence and a decision on where their sole of main residence is, cannot be disputed. Where a person has more than one residence the council is required to decide where the main residence is.

In these cases consideration will be given to factors such as where a spouse or partner or children reside and each case will be considered on the facts presented.

If you have more than one residence you should complete the council tax sole or main residence form.

Joint and several liability

Where two or more people hold a similar interest in a dwelling (for example they rank equally in the hierarchy of liability) they will each be jointly and severally liable (and receive a joint bill) to pay council tax in respect of the dwelling.

Married and unmarried couples are jointly and severally liable even if they do not have an equal interest in the dwelling.

An exception may apply where a person is classed as being severely mentally impaired (SMI) or a full time student. Such a person cannot be held jointly liable if there is someone else with the same status and legal interest in the property who is not severely mentally impaired or a full time student.

Any alterations to the circumstances determining council tax liability must be notified to the Council Tax section immediately - see the council tax account enquiries page.

Long Term Empty Homes

Properties which have been unoccupied and unfurnished for over two years and are not eligible for an exemption will attract a 50% increase in Council Tax charge.

Still need help?

For further assistance please contact us.

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