Part 7 Payment of rates and charges
560 Who is liable to pay rates?
(1) The owner for the time being of land on which a rate is levied is
liable to pay the rate to the council, except as provided by this
(2) If land owned by the Crown is leased, the lessee is liable to pay
the rate, except as provided by subsection (4).
(3) If there are two or more owners, or two or more lessees from the
Crown, of the land, they are jointly and severally liable to pay the
(4) The Crown is liable to pay the rate for land owned by the Crown
which is subject to the Housing Act
1912 or the Aboriginal
Housing Act 1998.
561 Who is liable to pay charges?
The person liable to pay a charge is:
(a) the person who, if the charge were a rate and if the land on which
the charge is levied were rateable in respect of that rate, would be liable
under section 560 to pay the rate, or
(b) the Crown in respect of land owned by the Crown, not being land
held under a lease for private purposes.
562 Payment of rates and annual charges
(1) Annual rates and charges may be paid in a single instalment or by
(2) If payment is made by quarterly instalments, each instalment is to
be a quarter of the rates or charges, disregarding any remainder, together, in
the case of the first instalment, with the remainder. However, if the amount
of an instalment, other than the first instalment, is not a multiple of 10
cents, the amount of each instalment in excess of a multiple of 10 cents is to
be subtracted from that instalment and added to the first
(3) Except as provided by subsection (4):
(a) if payment is made in a single instalment, the instalment is
payable by 31 August, and
(b) if payment is made by quarterly instalments, the instalments are
payable by 31 August, 30 November, 28 February and 31
(4) If the rates and charges notice is not served by 1 August:
(a) the single instalment (if payment is made in a single instalment),
(b) the first 2 instalments (if payment is made by quarterly
is or are payable by 30 November, or by the day that is 30 days after
service of the notice, whichever is the later.
(5) On or before 31 October, 31 January and 30 April, a council must
send reminder notices (to be sent separately from the rates and charges
notice) to each person whose rates and charges are being paid by quarterly
563 Discount for prompt payment in full
A council may discount the amount of a rate or charge to such
extent as it determines if the whole of the discounted amount of the rate or
charge is paid by a date nominated by the council.
564 Agreement as to periodical payment of rates and
(1) A council may accept payment of rates and charges due and payable
by a person in accordance with an agreement made with the
(2) The council may write off or reduce interest accrued on rates or
charges if the person complies with the agreement.
565 Capital contributions instead of payment of special rates
A council may waive payment by a rateable person of the whole or
part of a special rate or charge for one or more years as specified by the
council if the person pays, or enters into a written agreement to pay, a lump
sum towards the capital cost of any works, services or facilities for which
the special rate or charge is made.
566 Accrual of interest on overdue rates and
(1) Interest accrues on rates and charges that remain unpaid after
they become due and payable.
(2) Interest accrues on a daily basis.
(3) The rate of interest is that set by the council but must not
exceed the rate specified for the time being by the Minister by notice
published in the Gazette.
(4) Accrued interest is, for the purpose of its recovery, taken to be
a rate or charge which is due and payable.
(5) Interest continues to accrue on unpaid rates or charges even
though judgment for payment of the rates or charges may have been obtained in
a court. Interest is not payable on the judgment debt, despite any other
567 Writing off of accrued interest
The council may write off accrued interest on rates or charges
payable by a person if, in its opinion:
(a) the person was unable to pay the rates or charges when they became
due and payable for reasons beyond the person’s control,
(b) the person is unable to pay the accrued interest for reasons
beyond the person’s control, or
(c) payment of the accrued interest would cause the person
568 Application of payments
Money paid to a council in respect of rates or charges levied on
land is to be applied towards payment of those rates or charges in the order
in which they became due.
569 Liability of the occupier
(1) A council may serve on an occupier of land a notice of the amount
of any rate or charge unpaid in respect of the land or of the amount of any
judgment given against a person for any rate or charge unpaid in respect of
the land, if the person liable to pay the rate or charge:
(a) is resident outside New South Wales, or
(b) is unknown to the council, or
(c) has not been served in any legal proceedings for the recovery of
the rate or charge after reasonable efforts have been made by or on behalf of
the council to effect service, or
(d) becomes bankrupt, applies to take the benefit of any law for the
relief of bankrupt or insolvent debtors, compounds with his or her creditors
or makes an assignment of his or her remuneration for their benefit,
(e) dies, or
(f) has had judgment given against him or her for the amount of the
rate or charge.
(2) The notice may demand that any rent in respect of the land is to
be paid by the occupier to the council as it falls due in satisfaction of the
rate, charge or judgment.
(3) The council may recover the amount of the rate, charge or judgment
outstanding as a debt from the occupier if rent is not paid to the council in
accordance with the demand.
(4) A payment under this section to the council discharges the payer
from any liability to any person to pay the rent.
570 Transfer of land in payment of rates or
A council may accept a transfer of the land in respect of which
rates or charges are or accrued interest is due and payable in full
satisfaction of the rates, charges or accrued
571 What happens if land is transferred?
(1) A person who disposes of an estate in land continues to be liable
to pay a rate or charge levied in respect of the land if the rate or charge
(a) before the estate was disposed of, or
(b) after the estate was disposed of but before notice of the transfer
was given as required by this Act.
(2) A person who, as the holder of a licence, permit, permissive
occupancy or authority under the Crown Lands
Act 1989, was liable for rates or charges continues to be
liable to pay a rate or charge levied in respect of the land subject to the
licence, permit, permissive occupancy or authority if the rate or charge was
levied before the licence, permit, permissive occupancy or authority was
terminated or expired.
(3) A person who becomes liable for rates and charges levied on land
is liable to the council for a rate or charge owing in respect of the land
even though the person was not so liable when the rate or charge was
572 What happens if the rateability of land
(1) A rate is proportionate to the portion of the year for which land
is rateable and to the portion of the land which is
(2) A charge, other than a charge limited under section 503 (2) to the
cost of providing a particular service to land, is proportionate to the
portion of the year for which land is rateable.
573 What happens if land is subdivided?
If land is subdivided, and a part is sold or let, any unpaid rates
or charges may be apportioned by the council on the recommendation of the
574 Appeal on question of whether land is rateable or subject
to a charge
(1) A person who has an estate in land, or who is the holder of a
licence or permit for land under the Crown
Lands Act 1989, in respect of which a rates and charges notice
is served may appeal to the Land and Environment Court:
(a) in the case of a rate—against the levying of the rate on the
ground that the land or part of it is not rateable or is not rateable to a
particular ordinary rate or a particular special rate, or
(b) in the case of a charge—against the levying of the charge on
the ground that the land is not subject to any charge (excluding a charge
limited under section 503 (2)) or is not subject to the particular
(2) An appeal may not be made under this section on the ground that
land has been wrongly categorised under Part 3.
(3) An appeal must be made within 30 days after service of the rates
and charges notice.
(4) If the Land and Environment Court determines that only a part of
land is rateable, it is required to determine the value of that
Note. While the grounds of appeal concerning rates are limited to those
specified in section 574, opportunity is given at different points in the
rate-making process for objections, submissions (including submissions by way
of objection) and applications to be made to a council concerning rates. These
• public notice of the draft operational plan
• application for change of category for purposes of ordinary
• deferral and reduction of rates.