If you are in debt and need financial advice, we recommend that you act now and seek information and advice.
Help and advice is available to help manage debts, prevent rent and Council Tax arrears and reduce the worst-case risk of your home being re-possessed.
Council Tax payments
Like everyone else the Council itself is currently facing an impact on its finances as a result of the pandemic. We want to support all of our residents who are suffering financial hardship at this time and are unable to pay their Council Tax.
Applications for Council Tax Support can be registered with us online, and revised payment arrangements can also be negotiated by contacting us. It should be remembered that around 71p in every pound of Maldon residents’ bills goes to Essex County Council to support essential services including social care. The money collected through Council Tax also helps fund a number of organisations including the emergency services – the fire service and police. Only 11p in every pound comes to Maldon District Council.
If you have received a payment reminder, please don't ignore it. Read the information about what happens if you pay late or don't pay.
Reducing your bill
Make sure you are claiming all of the discounts you are entitled to by reading information on discounts available ( including discretionary discount) or getting help or support to do this.
Make sure you are claiming all of the benefits and financial support you are entitled to by using this online benefit checker.
Benefit and Discretionary Payments
Can a bank take housing benefit to pay my overdraft?
No, banks are not allowed to use housing benefit or any other benefit to repay an overdraft.
You can protect your housing benefit payments or another payment that has been earmarked for paying a specific, essential bill by telling your bank it should only be used for that purpose. This protection is called a 'first right of appropriation of funds order'.
You can use the first right of appropriation on any money being paid into your account. For example, you may want to make sure that your job seekers allowance (JSA) is used to pay your electricity bill and water rates. You will need to tell your bank how to use these payments.
How do I request a first right of appropriation of funds order?
You need to write to your bank at least seven days before your housing benefit/discretionary payment is due, making it clear that any regular payments or one off deposits from Maldon District Council are to pay for your rent/essential living costs (as appropriate).
For example, you may want to instruct your bank or building society:
"On or around August 20th, and every 2 weeks after, my housing benefit will be paid into my current account number 0101010101. I am exercising my first right of appropriation over these funds and wish you to pay the following items from it: £75 standing order payable to my landlord, Mr Smith on the 25th of the month."
Keep a copy of the letter in case there is any dispute later. You may want to ask your bank/building society for a written acknowledgement of your instructions.
If there are any items you no longer want to pay from your account, or which you cannot afford, you should give your bank separate cancellation instructions. This is because the first right of appropriation does not stop the bank paying items as well as those you have listed. If you do not cancel these items, your bank may return the items as unpaid, which they may charge you for. However, payments from your account to re-pay a loan with the same bank cannot be cancelled.
Help from the Council
Benefits advice including discretionary payments for rent and Council Tax
Council Tax discounts and exemptions
Housing advice and housing grants
Help from other agencies
MoneyHelper brings together the support and services of three government-backed financial guidance providers: the Money Advice Service, the Pensions Advisory Service and Pension Wise.
An independent local charity working with and for senior citizens in Essex
Email: Age UK
Tel: 01245 346106
Help on starting and running a business
YouTube: Business Support Helpline
Tel: 0300 456 3565
Helpful budget tool for customers
Webchat available with a specialist adviser 9am to 8pm, Monday to Friday
Tel: 0800 197 6026
Citizens Advice Bureau (National) and Citizens Advice Bureau (Maldon)
An independent voluntary organisation offering confidential and free information, advice and advocacy services
Tel: 01621 875 774 Maldon Branch
Credit Union - Holdfast Credit Union
Holdfast is your local Credit Union, run by the community for the community
Email: Holdfast Credit Union
Tel: 01376 516994 Mondays, Tuesdays & Fridays 9.30am to 1.00pm
Free, impartial advice
Tel: 0800 043 40 50 Monday to Friday 8am to 6pm
The online link to access all government services
Energy Savings Trust Advice Centre
Free and impartial advice on ways to save money on fuel bills and on grant schemes for insulation and heating works
Email: Energy Savings Trust for business
Tel: 020 7222 0101
Essex Essential Living Fund (ELF)
This scheme can assist with general household costs and living expenses and is administered by Southend Borough Council
Tel: 0300 7900124 between 8:45am to 5:15pm
The Healthcare Travel Costs Scheme
If you meet three conditions, you could get a refund under the 'Healthcare Travel Costs Scheme' (HTCS) for the cost of travelling to hospital or other NHS premises for NHS-funded treatment or diagnostic test arranged by a doctor or dentist
Tel: 0300 330 1343
IVA (Individual Voluntary Arrangement)
Chat online via website with an advisor
Search for a job, training, career information, voluntary work and childcare provision anywhere in the UK. Free confidential and independent advice on how to deal with debt problems
Webchat available with specialist advisor 9am to 8pm, Monday to Friday
Tel: 0808 808 4000
Provides free advice and resources to help people deal with their business finances and business debts
Webchat 9am - 8pm, Monday to Friday
Tel: 0800 1976026
The housing and homelessness charity
Tel: 0800 085 1798
Online debt advice tool and budget forms available through the website
Visit the website to chat online with a debt advisor
If you are an existing client, you can email email@example.com
Tel: 08001381111 Monday to Friday 9am to 5pm and Saturdays 8am to 4pm
The Warm Front Scheme installs heating and insulation measures in your home