A guide to help you understand your council tax bill and find out how you can sign up to receive your bills by email (e-billing).
You will receive your annual council tax bill at the beginning of March each year.
This image shows an example council tax bill. Each numbered section is explained in detail below.
- Council tax payer name(s) – This is the person(s) responsible for paying the bill and their correspondence address.
- The date – this is the date your council tax bill was printed. Any payments made after this date will not be shown on this bill.
- Your council tax account number – you’ll need this number if you want to talk to us about your bill or make a payment.
- Your property reference number – you’ll need this number if you want to check your council tax band with the Valuation Office Agency.
- Address of chargeable property – if different to your correspondence address
- Your council tax band - your property will be in one of eight valuation bands A-H
- Adult Social Care Precept - since 2017/2018 the Government has allowed Local Authorities to charge an additional ‘precept’ on top of their core council tax charge to help pay for Adult Social Care Services.
- Yearly Charge
The charge for all Council services, including the Cornwall Fire & Rescue Service. A maximum % increase is set annually by Central Government and is calculated as an increase on the overall Cornwall Council charge for the previous year (including Adult Social Care precept). Any proposed increase above the maximum limit would have to be voted upon by residents in a referendum.
Adult Social Care
An additional levy that can be raised by authorities with Adult Social Care (ASC) responsibilities. Again the maximum % increase is set by Central Government and is calculated as an increase on the overall Cornwall Council charge for the previous year (including Adult Social Care precept). For further information on the ASC precept please see Adult Social Care Precept 2023
Devon & Cornwall Police and Crime Commissioner
The charge for services provided by Devon & Cornwall Police. The Government also sets the maximum Council Tax increase that Police forces can apply but this will differ from the maximum increase applicable to Cornwall Council.
Charge for services provided by your local Council. Town and Parish Councils are currently not restricted in the charges that they can apply (known as the precept). Town and Parish Council that raise a precept of over £140,000 have to provide further detail of their financial plans Town and Parish Council precepts.
- Discounts- any discounts we’ve granted. You will need to let us know if there is any change of occupiers, or if a discount no longer applies.
- The amount you have to pay - after any payment, discounts, exemptions or premiums have been applied.
- Your instalments – This shows the amounts due and dates of when you need to pay each instalment. If you pay by direct debit the bill will confirm that here and tell you the dates that your instalments will be collected. Did you know that you can pay your council tax over 10 or 12 monthly instalments?
- Outstanding charges - any charges outstanding from a previous year will be shown here. This figure may be out of date when you receive the bill if you’ve recently made a payment towards your bill.
If you don’t manage your council tax account online yet
If you are not signed up to manage your council tax online yet, you can set up paperless billing when you register. To do this:
If you already manage your council tax account online and you would like to sign up to receive your bills by email
If you manage your council tax online already, you just need to sign into your account to change your paperless billing preference. To do this:
- Sign into your online account
- Click My Services
- Click Show Details, and click next at the bottom of page
- Click e-billing
- Confirm that you have read the term and conditions
- Enter your email address and select ‘Email with link’
- Verify your email. If it appears that you’ve not received an email, remember to check your ‘Junk Folder’.
If you move address or your circumstances change during the financial year, please let us know straight away and we will adjust your bill.
In some cases, you may be entitled to money off your council tax bill.
We want to support you and recognise that at times, it can be difficult for you to pay your bills. Council tax arrears is a priority debt which means you need to make your payments in full, on or before the dates listed on the front of your bill.