Recent statements in this category are shown below:
Statement Not upheld Other 02-Dec-2020
Summary: Mr X complains that the Council sent his council tax debt to bailiffs when he had already paid. He says this caused stress, distress, and took him time and trouble to resolve. The Ombudsman does not find the Council at fault.
Statement Upheld Other 01-Dec-2020
Summary: Mr X complains that the Council charged him business rates for a business he does not own, delayed resolving the matter, and delayed responding to his Subject Access Request. He says this caused stress, put him under undue pressure, and cost time and trouble. The Ombudsman largely does not find the Council at fault. However, the Ombudsman finds the Council at fault for failing to respond to Mr X's emails within the timeframe it set out. This caused Mr X injustice. The Council has already apologised to Mr X for this. We are satisfied that this apology remedies the injustice caused. The Ombudsman will not investigate the part of Mr X's complaint about the Subject Access Request because it has already been investigated by the Information Commissioner's Office.
Statement Upheld Other 30-Oct-2020
Summary: Mr X complains about the Council's decision that he was not entitled to small business rate relief. The Council is at fault as it did not consider Mr X's utility bills as evidence he was occupying a business unit at the time he submitted the bills. This fault did not cause injustice to Mr X as the Council has now considered the bills and it would not have made a different decision if it had considered the bills earlier. The Council delayed in responding to Mr X's complaint at stage two of its complaints procedure which will have caused frustration to Mr X. The Council apologised to Mr X for the delay in responding to his complaint which is an appropriate and proportionate remedy for the frustration caused to Mr X.
Statement Upheld Other 29-Oct-2020
Summary: The Ombudsman will not investigate Mr X's complaint that the Council's enforcement agents wrongly contacted his mother about a debt she did not owe. This is because we are satisfied with the Council's proposed actions and it is unlikely an investigation would lead to a different outcome.
Statement Upheld Other 16-Oct-2020
Summary: Mr X complains the Council held him liable for business rates while it was considering a planning decision on his commercial property. He says the delays in the planning process caused him financial loss and a loss of income. He also complains about delays in the Council's complaints handling. The Ombudsman finds no fault in how the Council applied business rates charges, but fault in how it handled Mr X's complaint. The Council has agreed a remedy to address the injustice caused to Mr X.
Statement Not upheld Other 28-Sep-2020
Summary: The Ombudsman discontinued his investigation into this complaint about the conduct of enforcement agents in pursuing a Council Tax debt. This is because the majority of the complaint is outside his jurisdiction, and he could not add anything to the Council's investigation of the remaining points.
Statement Upheld Other 23-Sep-2020
Summary: Mr X complains that the Council incorrectly sent him a business rate charge for a property which caused him distress. The Ombudsman will not investigate this complaint because the Council has waived the charge and the Ombudsman would not seek any further remedy in this matter.
Statement Upheld Other 10-Sep-2020
Summary: Ms X complains the Council failed to contact her properly about her council tax bill and later wrongly told her she had paid off her council tax debt in full. Ms X says this meant she had to pay extra bailiffs' fees. The Council is at fault for failing to respond to Ms X's contact according to its process. It has suitably remedied the injustice Ms X experienced because of its fault.
Statement Upheld Other 07-Sep-2020
Summary: There was no fault by the Council, in its handling of a business rates matter. The complainant did not notify the Council he had occupied an additional unit, which ultimately explains the delay in his being billed correctly. But the Council was at fault for its poor complaint handling, and it has agreed to apologise for this.
Statement Upheld Other 14-Jul-2020
Summary: The Ombudsman will not investigate Ms X's complaint about the Council's decision to reject her application for Discretionary Housing Payment. This is because there is insufficient evidence of fault in the way the Council reached its decision to warrant an investigation. Ms X also complained about the Council's decision to reject her application for Council Tax Discretionary Relief. The Ombudsman will not investigate this part of the complaint because the Council has agreed to my recommendations to take appropriate and proportionate action to remedy the injustice to Ms X.