Campaign group False Economy has said 500,000 more people have been taken to court over unpaid council tax this year, with the increase due to the government scrapping council tax benefit in 2013. Three million people were taken to court by local authorities in 2013-14, a 25% increase. Councils can select whether to charge low-income residents and, due to a new budgets which are £490m, or 10% smaller, often do. Of 326 local authorities in England, 244 have introduced charges that all residents are liable for. The Local Government Association said: "Many councils have introduced hardship funds or have changed the way unpaid tax is collected. Councils only take legal action as a last resort." Kris Hopkins, minister for local government, said: "Council tax bills doubled under Labour, and spending on council tax benefit soared to £4bn a year - equivalent to almost £180 a year per taxpaying-household."