Attachment of Earnings…Council Tax
If you cannot pay your Council Tax arrears and a Liability Order has been granted, the local authority can legally apply for an Attachment of Earnings Order. This means that the Council can instruct your employer to make deductions direct from your salary to pay towards your outstanding arrears. The employer is also allowed to deduct a fee of £1 to cover their administration costs.
A Council Tax Attachment of Earnings Order (CTAEO) should not be confused with an Attachment of Earnings Order for an unpaid County Court Judgment or court fines.
Can the bailiff company set up an Attachment of Earnings Order?
Yes, legislation does provide that an enforcement company can set up an Attachment of Earnings Order on behalf of the local authority and in fact, this is a very common procedure indeed.
How much will be deducted from my salary under an Attachment of Earnings Order?
The amount that can be deducted is set out in legislation and will be calculated by your employer from your net earnings (ie: after tax and national insurance have been applied). The amount of “earnings” will include any bonuses and overtime.
To calculate how much will be deducted by your employer under a Council Tax Attachment of Earnings Order (CTAEO) please see below.
Net Weekly Earnings
|Up to £75||Nil||0%|
|Between £75 and £135||£2.25 to £4.05||3%|
|Between £135 and £185||£6.75 to £9.25||5%|
|Between £185 and £225||£12.95 to £15.75||7%|
|Between £225 and £355||£27.00 to £42.60||12%|
|Between £355 and £505||£60.35 to £85.85||17%|
|Exceeding £505||Minimum £85.85||17% in respect of the first £505 and 50% of the remainder|
Net Monthly Earnings
|Up to £300||Nil||0%|
|Between £300 and £550||£9.00 to £16.50||3%|
|Between £550 and £740||£27.50 to £37.00||5%|
|Between £740 and £900||£51.80 to £63.00||7%|
|Between £900 and £1,420||£108.00 to £170.40||12%|
|Between £1,420 and £2,020||£241.40 to £343.40||17%|
|Exceeding £2,020||Minimum £343.40||17% in respect of the first £2,020 and 50% in respect of the remainder|
I already have a deduction from my wages for a loan.
Many people have outstanding loans from their employer (for the purchase of a yearly season ticket for example) which is deducted monthly from their wages. Council Tax Attachment of Earnings Order (CTAEO) is a legal order and accordingly, it takes priority.
I already have one CTAEO…can the council apply for another one?
If you already have one Council Tax Attachment of Earnings Order in place, a second AEO can still be imposed , in date order, with the later order being applied to the residue of earnings. However, if there are two CTAEO’s in place, no further orders can be imposed.
Will deductions be made if I am receiving sick pay?
Yes. The deduction is worked out using your net wage. Therefore, if your earnings reduce, the amount of deductions will also reduce.
Can I make an alternative proposal to pay?
No. An Attachment of Earnings Order is a legal document and once the order has been sent to your employer, it may only be stopped once the full outstanding amount is paid. You would need to contact the local authority for full details.
The Attachment of Earnings Order means that I cannot pay my mortgage or rent.
If the deductions under the Attachment of Earnings Order mean that your home is at risk (or you do not have enough money to feed and cloth your family), you must contact the local authority immediately.
What will happen if I lose my job or change employer?
If you change jobs, or your employment ceases, you MUST tell the local authority immediately. If you fail to do so, bailiff/enforcement agent action may be taken.
Note from Bailiff Advice
If you have any queries regarding a council tax attachment of earnings order or about a Liability Order in general, you can email a question to us using our popular Question page. Alternatively, you can contact us by phone. Details are on our Contact page.
A simple overview of the new Taking Control of Goods Regulations 2013 can be read here.