A MOTHER has told how she suffered FOUR mental breakdowns after being hit by a £13,000 tax bill.
Sylvie Denne, 56, was visited by bailiffs three years ago who demanded that she pay £2,500 in council tax arrears.
Her daughter took out a loan to pay the bill — but in August 2021, they discovered the bill was actually much bigger.
Sylvie claims she has received a letter asking £13,000 in arrears for her London home since moving in 2008 because the council “didn’t take the right amount”.
Since then, Sylvie, who has university loans, has asked to pay off £200 a month on top of her £150 council tax bill – but she says Croydon Council has required her to pay £360.
But last week a court summons came through the door saying she owes £7,000 but hasn’t paid her council tax for a year.
The shock bills had a major impact on Slyvie’s mental health.
She told MyLondon: “I almost had a nervous breakdown. My question is why they let the debt grow so big before informing me they just dropped it out of the blue on the doorstep.
“We live hand to mouth. I am in a very bad way, I have eight physical disabilities and mental problems.
“I have to eat properly, but I can’t afford it because I’m paying for everything with debt.”
Her daughter Rachael is now concerned for her mother who cannot afford to pay Croydon’s enforcement team £510 a month.
She said: “It’s the kind of situation where we have to make do with what we have.
“I’ve noticed I’ve gained weight, but I can’t eat properly because of the expense.”
Rachael worries that the problem could happen to other unsuspecting people.
She added: “I don’t understand how the incompetence made it what it is.
“If she has £20 for electricity and £20 in her purse, she’ll set aside £10 to put on council tax just so she doesn’t have the stress of someone knocking on her door.
“She doesn’t even open her letters because she’s afraid of the Council. Your level of communication is ridiculous. I don’t know what people do there, but they don’t do their job properly. They’re the ones who are fucking king it up.”
In a statement, a spokesman for Croydon City Council said: “We understand the pressure that debt can put on people and should residents default on their payments, we work with them to agree clear and manageable payments based on their circumstances .
“Our team will be in touch with you shortly to come up with an agreement that works for all parties and to ensure next steps are clearly set out for everyone involved. Where appropriate, we may also refer residents to independent debt counseling services for further help and support. ”
https://www.the-sun.com/news/5539490/council-tax-bill-four-nervous-breakdowns/ I was hit with a £13,000 council tax bill and it gave me FOUR nervous breakdowns… it was a nightmare