Councils in Britain have issued a warning for Britons to be wary of council tax rebate scammers. In an attempt to take advantage of the government’s recent announcement on £150 council tax rebates, scammers have started cold calling households across the UK asking for their bank details.
But the Local Government Association warns that these cold calls are scams and are a warning to residents to stay away from them. They stress that the government does not ask for bank details over the phone and stresses that the rebate is available to all council tax bands.
The government’s new rebate scheme has been used as an opportunity for fraudsters to take advantage of vulnerable citizens. The scheme offers £150 in rebates for energy bills, based on your council tax band.
A scammer may try to steal your bank account details by posing as your local council. These callers may claim to be offering the Government’s £150 council tax rebate, and may even ask for your bank account details. If you believe you’ve been a victim of a scam, stop all communication immediately and contact your local police. The Local Government Association has warned that councils do not ask for bank account details over the phone. Those who pay their council tax by direct debit will receive the money directly into their bank account.
Scammers call people and ask them to give them bank account details. Shortly thereafter, large sums of money are automatically withdrawn from their accounts. Council tax rebates are administered by local authorities. However, people are sometimes misled into believing that they can get a rebate for paying their council tax on time.
Direct debit payments aren’t eligible for a rebate
If you pay your council tax by direct debit, you’ll get the rebate sooner, so signing up is a good idea. However, if you don’t pay by direct debit, you can still get a rebate by setting up a new account. The council will contact you to obtain your bank details and arrange for a direct debit payment instead. Alternatively, you can pay by credit or debit card.
If you’re not registered to pay by direct debit, you can still claim the £150 rebate by contacting your local council and requesting a new account. Generally, it takes a few days for the council to process your claim. The council will then contact you in April and arrange for your direct debit payment. If you don’t receive this payment, you’ll be contacted by mail or phone to claim your rebate.
The council will send out vouchers to all liable households. The vouchers are designed to help households with the costs of paying council tax. Each household will determine who will receive the voucher, and the payments will be processed by the council first. It is expected that direct debit payers will receive their £150 rebate between April 2022 and May 2022. The Manchester Evening News is yet to receive further information on the refund process.
The scheme is designed to help people with low incomes pay their council taxes. It is estimated that there are over half a million households in England in council tax bands A to D.