Council Tax


We often receive Freedom of Information (FOI) requests regarding liability to pay council tax, how council tax is spent, and the processing of personal data in relation to council tax.  Therefore, for the purposes of transparency and openness, we have compiled comprehensive information regarding these common topics below.

Council Tax liability

In the UK, liability for council tax is determined by the Local Government Finance Act 1992. This statute was created by a democratically elected Parliament of the United Kingdom which has received the assent of the Crown and subsequent statutory regulations. It sets out a local authority’s rights to demand council tax to fund services and who is liable to pay.

Liability for council tax is not dependent on nor does it require consent or the existence of a contractual relationship with the Council.

Council tax legislation is freely available:


Acts of Parliaments are Statutes which set out the law. If you have questions regarding other Acts of Parliament or laws, these should be directed to a legal professional. If you have any concerns over the charging of council tax, you should seek proper legal advice.

Please note for the purposes of Freedom of Information requests, we can confirm under section 1(1)(a) of the FOI Act that we do not hold information relating to the legislation stated above. Any requests of this nature should be redirected to the relevant Government department.

Council tax is managed by Mid Kent Revenues and Benefits, which is a shared service between Maidstone Borough Council, Swale Borough Council and Tunbridge Wells Borough Council. Mid Kent Revenues and Benefits acts on the instruction of the relevant local authority depending on where the residence is located. For residents of Maidstone, this falls under Maidstone Borough Council. Therefore, Maidstone Borough Council is the data controller of Maidstone residents’ data.

Spending

Council tax is agreed and set annually by elected members. The following organisations receive a proportion of council tax payments:

OrganisationProportion of Council Tax received
Kent County Council62.9%
Kent County Council Adult Social Care8.5%
Maidstone Borough Council13.5%
Kent Police and Crime Commissioner11.1%
Kent and Medway Fire and Rescue Authority4%

You can find out more about how council tax is spent by each of these organisations at the following links:

Non-payment of Council Tax and Mid-Kent Enforcement Service

Any resident who withholds payment of council tax will have recovery action taken against them by Mid-Kent Enforcement Service.

Mid-Kent Enforcement Service is not a company and is therefore not registered on Companies House. Mid-Kent Enforcement Service provides a shared service to Maidstone Borough Council, Swale Borough Council and Tunbridge Wells Borough Council. Mid-Kent Enforcement Service acts on the instruction of the relevant local authority depending on where the residence is located. For residents of Maidstone, this falls under Maidstone Borough Council.

Mid-Kent Enforcement Service adopts and adheres to the following legislation to recover debts by Bankruptcy:


In extreme cases, non-payment of council tax could lead to committal proceedings, or even a prison sentence. This was seen in the McKenzie (2015) case at Manchester Magistrates’ Court, where an individual who attempted to use ‘freeman of the land’ defences in court was sentenced to 40 days in prison.

Processing data

We process your personal data in accordance with the Data Protection Act 2018 and UK GDPR. Details of how we comply with the lawful processing of your personal data in relation to council tax can be found in our privacy notice.

We have a legal duty to collect council tax and send correspondence regarding the payment of council tax. This is a statutory obligation that the Council is bound by. Personal data is processed in accordance with this lawful duty. Therefore, as a local authority we are authorised to contact individuals and share personal data held for this purpose.

We do not rely on a contract with individuals to process their personal information in relation to council tax, and we do not require the individual’s consent to do so.
Please be aware that Article 17 (Right to Erasure) and Article 21 (Right to Restrict processing) of the UK GDPR are not absolute rights and are exempt in relation to ‘the assessment or collection of a tax or duty or an imposition of a similar nature’ under the Data Protection Act 2018. Therefore, any such requests in relation to personal data held for the purpose of council tax will be refused under Schedule 2 Part 1 Paragraph 2(c) of the Data Protection Act 2018.