WQ92977 (e) Tabled on 22/05/2024

What consideration has the Welsh Government given to creating a statutory code of practice for council tax debt collection officers, to ensure bailiff conduct is of a high standard?

Answered by Cabinet Secretary for Finance, Constitution and Cabinet Office | Answered on 24/05/2024

All councils in Wales have committed to implementing the Council Tax Protocol for Wales. This is an important step in changing the culture of council tax enforcement. The Protocol sets out a good practice approach for local authorities and debt advice agencies to ensure any action they take is proportionate, fair and consistent.

The use of enforcement action should always be a last resort. In November 2023 all council leaders in Wales committed to only using accredited firms to collect local tax arrears, making Wales the first nation in the UK to adopt this approach. This provides individuals with certainty that enforcement agencies and their bailiffs will act in accordance with their commitments to the Enforcement Conduct Board and follow agency standards.