26th May, 2017

District council reissues warning following reports of Council Tax scammers in Hatton

Leamington Editorial 26th Nov, 2015 Updated: 28th Oct, 2016

WARWICK District Council is reminding householders to be on their guard against Council Tax scammers.

Last month the authority advised residents to be wary of individuals and companies, who could phone or turn up on doorsteps using a variety of tactics to try and con cash from them.

And the latest warning follows reports on social media of potential scammers acting in the Hatton Park area on Tuesday (November 24).

Tactics being used by scammers include:

* Charging an up-front fee in order to challenge council tax banding and insisting householders are definitely in the wrong band, when in fact the band is correct.

* Saying they are from the local council or valuation office and asking for bank details so they can provide a refund.

* Claiming the valuation office charges to challenge a banding when residents can do it for free.

* Claiming residents must by law be represented by an agent to challenge banding when in fact anyone can do it.

Council leader Andrew Mobbs said: “We are very concerned to hear that residents may have fallen victim to scammers in the area and we are urging everyone to be vigilant when speaking to unannounced callers.

“Your local valuation office can help identify and confirm any discrepancies with your council tax free of charge and you should never be asked for money over the phone or at your front door.

“Always ask for identification from any cold callers and never give out your bank details unless you are sure who you are dealing with.”

If anyone fears they could have fallen victim to a potential scammer they should immediately contact Warwickshire Trading Standards.

And in a case where a cold caller refuses to leave, people are advised to call the police.

Visit www.warwickdc.gov.uk for further information.