Council blunder leaves 800 Corby residents wrongly summonsed for non-payment of council tax

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An apology has been issued by NCC leader Cllr Jason Smithers

Council chiefs have had to issue an apology to hundreds of Corby residents after they each wrongly received a court summons for non-payment of council tax.

A review has been ordered by Cllr Jason Smithers, the leader of North Northamptonshire Council, who has issued an apology to those affected.

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Those summonsed have been assured in a statement that that the council would 'sort out' the mistake.

The error took place in the Corby area of North Northants CouncilThe error took place in the Corby area of North Northants Council
The error took place in the Corby area of North Northants Council

The statement said: "North Northamptonshire Council would like to apologise sincerely for an error that has led to an estimated 800 summonses being issued incorrectly for non-payment of council tax.

"The error related to a batch of summonses that were issued in the Corby area.

"The council is in the process of identifying those affected to advise them of the corrective action the council is taking.

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"Residents who have paid their council tax bill to date are advised to disregard the summons."

Cllr Jason Smithers, leader of the council said: "I would like to apologise sincerely to everyone affected. It is very disappointing that this error has been made and I am deeply sorry for any distress it may have caused. If you have received a summons in error, then please do not worry. We will sort this issue out.

"I have also asked for a review to be carried out into what caused the issue so that the council can learn from this mistake and ensure that it does not happen again. However, our priority right now is to put right what has gone wrong and say sorry to all those affected by this error."

Terri Meechan received a letter in the post and says she was 'scared to death' when she opened the envelope to discover the summons.

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She said: "I felt scare to death. It was for £1,600. I tried to call them all day yesterday, they just cut the phone off after it rang a few times. It's shocking and totally unprofessional.

"It said I had to be at Wellingborough Court on November 9. When I saw it had been a mistake it was a huge sigh of relief. But it's shocking. Somebody needs to get their act together. There's a lot of people out there who aren't as computer savvy as me and they would be terrified."

Anyone who feels that they may have received a summons for non-payment of council tax in error and are worried about the situation can contact the council via telephone on 0300 126 3000 during normal office hours or by contacting us.