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Council Tax Privacy Notice

Who is the Data Controller for this processing?

We are the Data Controller for this processing.

The personal information we have collected from you will be shared with fraud prevention agencies who will use it to prevent fraud and money-laundering and to verify your identity. If fraud is detected, you could be refused certain services, finance, or employment.

What services are covered by this privacy notice?        

Council tax

The billing and collection of council tax for residents in the borough.

Council tax reduction scheme

To assess whether you qualify for a reduction in your council tax payments.

Council tax digital service

To enable us to authenticate your online account so you can manage your council tax account using our digital service, this includes the completion of online forms to apply for discounts, exemptions and direct debits.

What personal information do we hold?

We only collect and use the minimum amount of personal information required when delivering a service to you.

Wherever possible we use non-identifiable personal information.

The service may use some or all of the personal information below:

  • your contact details and date of birth
  • number and status of other adults in the property to determine eligibility for discounts and exemptions
  • details about your lifestyle and social circumstances
  • financial details
  • employment status to assess your eligibility for our council tax reduction scheme
  • the IP address that you accessed any of our online services from
  • physical or mental health details to assess your eligibility for discounts and exemptions

We get most of this information from you, but we may also get some of this data from:

  • central government agencies
  • other local authorities
  • family members

How do we use your personal information?

We use your information to:

  • deliver the service, or handle your query
  • plan and improve the services we offer
  • detect and prevent crime or fraud
  • research, however this would be in anonymised form unless we ask for your consent to use your personal information for this purpose
  • evidence positive outcomes to central government funding agencies

Who else might we share your personal information with?

Sometimes we may need to share your information, but we will only do so where it is necessary or required by law. We will only share the minimum information for each circumstance.

We may sometimes need to share some of your information with:

  • Cabinet office – National fraud initiative
  • HM courts and tribunals service
  • local government
  • police
  • social housing associations
  • private landlords
  • Department of works and pensions
  • welfare advisors
  • employment mentors
  • corporate fraud officers
  • corporate debt officers
  • financial assessment officer (care needs)
  • HMRC
  • valuation office
  • Office of National Statistics (ONS)

What is the legal basis for our use of your personal information?

Most of the personal information we process is provided to us directly by you, under the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), the lawful bases we rely on for using your personal information are:  

  • we have a legal obligation (GDPR Article 6 (c)
  • we need it to perform a public task (GDPR Article 6 (e)

When we collect data about your race, health (including biometric or genetic data), sex life, sexual orientation, ethnic origin, politics or trade union membership, we also rely on the following lawful basis:

  • we need to collect it for Substantial Public Interest in order to comply with UK legislation (GDPR Article 9 (2) (g)
  • we need to analyse your information (GDPR Article 9 (2) (j))

The legislation we rely on when using your personal information to meet our legal obligations or public tasks includes but is not limited to:

  • Local Government Act 2000
  • Localism Act 2011
  • The Social Security Administration Miscellaneous Regulation 2017
  • The Social Security Contributions and Benefits Act 1992
  • The Social Security Administration Act 1992
  • The Child Support, Pension and Social Security Act 2000
  • The Welfare Reform Act  2007& 2012
  • The Welfare Reform and Work Act 2016
  • Housing Benefit Regulation 2006 & Housing Benefit (State Pension) Regulations 2006
  • The Universal Credit Regulation 2014 & Universal Credit (Transitional Provisions)2014
  • Housing Benefit and Council Tax Consequential Provisions Regulations 2006
  • The Rent Officers (Housing Benefits Functions) Order
  • Decision and Appeals Regulations 2001
  • Immigration and Asylum Act 1999
  • Section 122D Social Security Administration Act (Department of Works and Pension can require disclosure of certain benefit information for use for Departmental purposes)
  • Section 3 Social Security Act 1998 – (an implied power to give back data the Local Authority have collected while acting on DWP’s behalf)
  • Statistics and Registration Service Act 2007 s45(1)
  • The Local Government Finance Act 1992
  • The Council Tax (administration and enforcement) regulations 1992
  • Human Rights Act 1998

Where will we store your information?

The information will be stored in our tax processing system, Capita Academy. Only administrators of the system have access to it. The system complies with the international organisation for standardisation (ISO) and is fully encrypted.

How long will we keep your personal information?

We will only use your personal information whilst delivering the service to you and to deal with any questions or complaints that we may receive about this, unless the law requires us to keep it for a longer period. In practice, this means that your information will be held as long as the account is live and kept for up to six years after the account is ceased or your entitlement to exemptions or reductions has ended. We keep this data to ensure the accuracy of council tax liability and administration.

If we need to use your information for research or reports, your information will be anonymised and any information taken from notes (hand written or typed) during any consultation sessions will be securely destroyed. The information will continue to be used in a summarised and anonymised form in any research reports or papers that are published. The anonymised information in the papers may be of historic interest and may be held in public archives indefinitely.

Your rights

Under data protection law, you have rights including:

  • your right of access - you have the right to ask us for copies of your personal information
  • your right to rectification - you have the right to ask us to rectify information you think is inaccurate. You also have the right to ask us to complete information you think is incomplete.
  • your right to restriction of processing - you have the right to ask us to restrict the processing of your information in certain circumstances
  • your right to object to processing - you have the right to object to the processing of your personal data in certain circumstances

You are not required to pay any charge for exercising your rights. If you make a request, we have one month to respond to you.

To make a request, follow the instructions on our Data Protection for you page. 

How to complain if you are unhappy about how your data is used

You can complain directly to our Data Protection team:

  • Online: Contact the DPO
  • By post: Data Protection Officer, 4 Civic Way, Ellesmere Port, CH65 0BE

You also have the right to complain to the Information Commissioner’s Office using the following details:

Will my personal information be accessible outside the UK?

Your information is stored on UK servers, but the transfer of personal information outside of the UK could become necessary. 

This would only take place if permitted by law, where there are appropriate safeguards in place to protect the personal information.

Will this information be used to take automated decisions about me?

No.

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