How we use your personal information for Council Tax purposes

The Council provides services for local communities and the people who live in them.  Undertaking this work means that we must collect and use information about the people we provide services to and keep a record of those services. Because we collect and use personal information about individuals we must make sure that they know what we intend to do with their information and who it may be shared with. 

We have summarised in this privacy notice some of the key ways in which we use your personal information for council tax purposes. This information should be read in conjunction with the Council’s corporate privacy notice

1.    Who we are, what we do.

As the Billing Authority for Council Tax, we hold certain information about you, which we use to administer and collect Council Tax. This includes the need to process your information to contact you, to calculate your liability, to collect payments and recover any overdue council tax from you. Further information about how we use your personal data is provided below.

 

2.    What and whose personal information we hold?

We hold information about past and present individuals deemed liable to pay council tax in the County Borough.

The types of information we hold and process will typically include:

      
  • Contact details, including name, address, telephone numbers and email address.

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  • Financial details such as bank account number if you pay council tax by Direct Debit.

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  • In some circumstances information about your family, dependents or non dependents such as where status discounts and exemptions are allowed – e.g. apprentices, students, trainees, school/college leavers, residents of care homes, care providers.

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  • In some circumstances information about your health such as where a reduction is being allowed due to a disability or mental impairment.

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  • In some circumstances information about your employment and entitlement to Welfare Benefits, such as where debts are being recovered under the powers of a Magistrates Court Liability Order through  deductions from earnings or benefits.   

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  • In some circumstances information about any periods that you have been detained in custody or under the Mental Health Act, where a discount or exemption is being allowed.

3.    Where does the service get my information from?

The personal information we collect about you can come from a variety of different sources as listed below: 

 

  •   Information provided directly by you for example on an application form or through correspondence with us.

  •   Information provided to us by other government agencies that we work   closely with. For example the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) and the Valuation Office Agency (VOA).

  •   Trusted third sector agencies and organisations such as Citizens Advice if they are acting on your behalf).

  •   Information from schools, colleges and universities and your GP where we need to verify information to apply a discount or exemption to your account.

  •   Information from other Council Services – such as Community & Children’s Services, the Tell Us Once Service, Housing Benefit Service, Electoral Registration  

  •   Information generated by us during our dealings with you.

  •   Information provided by members of the public e.g. complaint or concern

4.    What we will do with your personal information?

We will use this personal information to administer and collect council tax. This may include any of the following:

  • Send you Council Tax demand notices

  • Send you payment reminders

  • Process any discounts or exemptions that you may apply for

  • Process your payments e.g. direct debit, credit/debit card, cash payment

  • Recover any monies owed in line with our legal powers for example take you to court, refer the debt to the bailiffs for collection

  • Deduct payments direct from your employer or social security benefit where we have a court order that enables us to do so.

  • Deal with complaints or concerns.

  •   Identify and detect fraud.   

5.    What is the legal basis for the use of this information?

Data Protection law says that we are allowed to use and share personal information only where we have a proper and lawful reason for doing so.

 

Our lawful basis for processing this information for the above purposes is

 

To undertake our official statutory duties and to satisfy our legal obligations under the   following legislation:

 

  •  Local Government Finance Act 1992

In some circumstances, we will be required to process information regarding an individual’s health. This is classified as special category data and will be processed as part of our legal obligation under the following legislation:

 

  •   Disabled Persons Relief (statutory authority - The Council Tax (Reductions for Disabilities) Regulations 1992)

  •   Exemption/Disregard for severely mentally impaired (statutory authority - The Council Tax (Exempt Dwellings) Order 1992; The Council Tax (Discount Disregards) Order 1992)

  •   Exemption/Disregard for residents of care & nursing homes (statutory authority - The Council Tax (Exempt Dwellings) Order 1992; The Council Tax (Discount Disregards) Order 1992)

  •   Exemption/Disregard for care providers (statutory authority - The Council Tax (Exempt Dwellings) Order 1992; The Council Tax (Discount Disregards) Order 1992)

6.    Does the service share my personal information with any other organisation?

From time to time, we will share your personal information with advisers and service providers so that they can help us carry out our duties, rights and discretions in relation to council tax. These may include:

 

Internal Council Services such as:

 

  • Electoral Registration – to confirm residency

  • Housing Benefits – to assist in the administration of a Housing Benefit award

  • Registrars / Tell us Once – information about people who have recently deceased. 

  • Community & Children Services – to verify residency for financial support such as Child Care

Government agencies and organisations such as:

 

  • Her Majesties Court Services –  to recover unpaid council tax

  • The Valuation Tribunal for Wales – to maintain the property valuation list

  • The Department for Work and Pensions – to recover unpaid council tax

  • The Cabinet Office – for the purposes of the National Fraud Initiative.

  • Office of National Statistics - statistical and statistical research purposes

Payment processing providers:

 

  • Banking Automated Clearing Service (BACS) – to administer direct debit instructions and payments 

Trusted third party suppliers and organisations who provide services on our behalf:

  • Tracing bureau – (currently Experian) to recover unpaid council tax.

  • Enforcement Agents – (currently Andrew James Enforcement Ltd, Swift Credit Services Ltd) to enforce court orders in relation to unpaid council tax.

  • Solicitors – (currently Greenalgh Kerr Ltd) to provide legal expertise in bankruptcy proceedings in order to recover unpaid council tax

  • Printing companies – (currently MPS Ltd) to print, pack and post council tax documents.

  • Software provider – (currently Capita Software Services Ltd) to maintain our council tax systems. 

  • Data analysis – (currently Datatank Ltd) – for purposes of reviewing entitlement to discounts and reliefs.

Others:

  • Your employer – to recover monies owed directly from your employer where there is a Court Order

7.    How long will my information be kept?

We will keep your personal information for 7 years for administration purposes and to deal with any questions or complaints that we may receive about this, unless the law requires us to keep it for a longer period.

 

8.    Your information, your rights

The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) gives you important rights, including the right to access the personal information the services hold about you.

 

View further details on your information rights and how to exercise them. 

9.    Contact us

If you have any concerns or would like to know more about how the service using your personal information please contact us in one of the following ways:

 

By email : revenues@rctcbc.gov.uk

 

By telephone : 01443 425002

 

In writing : Financial Services Division, Ty Bronwydd, Porth, CF39 9DL 

 

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