Debt advice and solutions business Carrington Dean has set up a non-for-profit organisation to help people in council tax debt.
The organisation, Council Tax Advisors (CTA), will operate on a UK-wide basis and provide free help and advice to people struggling with tax arrears.
Carrington Dean said this meets a growing need for help as an estimated one in 10 UK households are struggling with council tax debts.
The service will help individuals by assisting them to agree sustainable and affordable repayment solutions.
The firm said it will also benefit councils by helping them maximise income at a time when they are struggling to meet the rising cost of social care and other vital services.
It also said the abolition of centralised council tax benefits has adversely affected many low and middle-income families that struggle with high levels of personal debt.
Peter Dean, chief executive of Carrington Dean, said: “We saw a strong correlation between people with council tax debt and vulnerable families facing a serious debt crisis.
“We decided to extend a helping hand by funding a free source of immediate help to people facing aggressive debt recovery tactics including wage arrestment and enforcement action as a result of council tax arrears.”
The Glasgow-based company received authorisation from the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) in November 2016 after a “rigorous” 18-month review.
The company provides IVAs, protected trust deeds, debt arrangement schemes and bankruptcy advice, though it does not arrange debt management plans.