Internet Payments - Help with Payments

Redcar and Cleveland Borough Council operates an internet payment facility for customers with debit or credit cards. This uses a third party website www.civicaepay.co.uk which is run by our payment services provider Civica. This address will appear in the address bar of your browser while you are entering payment details, including credit and debit card numbers.

The main payments page allows customers to select what they are paying for, and the amount they wish to pay.

In addition, on-line facilities such as the Central Government Planning Portal and the Council's own Parking Portal use the same system to let customers make payments for a pre-determined purpose and amount.

Both of these routes use the same back-office card validation system, and both of them usually work smoothly and provide a 24/7 service to our customers. (There is a regular scheduled downtime from 3am to 5am on alternate Monday mornings, to allow for updates and system maintenance) .

There are occasions when the service fails to work properly. There is a list below of problems some customers have experienced, together with solutions.



Question: Why is my AOL browser unable to access secure web addresses?

Some users of AOL have found that the default configuration of the browser does not allow it to access secure web pages. (Secure pages have an address that starts https instead of http.) Such users cannot access the Council's payments pages. This is not a problem with the Council's web site, but a common problem affecting access to all secure web pages from a particular browser.

The Council is not responsible for AOL software, but it is aware that some AOL users have found that the following procedure solves the problem.
  • Start AOL
  • Press Ctl-K to bring up the Keywords box
  • Enter keyword securefix and click on Go
  • You should see a message like Your settings have been adjusted. Please restart AOL.
  • Restart AOL and try the payments page again.
If this does not solve the problem, we suggest you contact AOL Customer Support for further advice.



Question: Why is my card not accepted?

The Council can accept Debit and Credit card payments from most common card providers. However, there are some card types, including American Express, Diner's Club, and JCB, which cannot be used to make payments through any Council payment route.

Also , some card providers prevent certain cards from making payments via the Internet. For instance, some Visa Electron cards have this limitation. If this is the case, you may still make payments in person at a Council Cash Office.

Some commercial 'purchasing card' schemes prevent the card from being used to pay certain types of supplier. It is possible that a card may be blocked from making payments to the Council. This would have to be checked with your card supplier.



Question: Why is my card number invalid?

A card number usually has 16 or 19 digits. Although it is printed on most cards with the figures grouped in fours, the spaces between are not part of the card number. The number should be typed in without the spaces.



Question: What do I do if my card has no Start Date or no Issue Number?

Not all cards have a Start Date or an Issue Number. Leave those entries blank on the payment screen. The validation process will not require it.



Question: What is the Security Code?

It is usually a 3-digit number printed on the signature strip on the back of the card.



Question: Why does it say "You do not have access to the requested page"?

There is a 20-minute timeout on each of the payment pages. If you do not enter send a response to each page within that time, the system will assume you have left. To preserve the security of your data, and particularly your card data, the system will discard anything you have entered. You will need to go back to the beginning and start again.



Question: What do these error messages mean?

Invalid reference for <payment type>
You have either mis-typed the reference number, or you have selected the wrong type of payment. Choose the payment type first, from the list on the left, then enter the reference. You must include any letters that are part of the reference.

Please enter a valid amount, e.g. £50 must be entered as 50.00
The amount must be typed with no currency symbol, a full stop for decimal point, and two digits for pence, even if they are zero. If you are entering a large amount, do not use commas to separate thousands (enter 1234.00, not 1,234.00)

That account does not exist
You have either mis-typed the reference, or you have selected the wrong type of payment. Choose the payment type first, from the list on the left, then enter the reference.
If you are paying a Council invoice, you must enter the invoice number as the reference rather than the account number.

A Payer name and address must be entered
Some payment types need to have a name and address to allow the receiving department to check that the right account has been paid.

Please either complete or cancel the currently entered payment
You have tried to go to the next step with a partly entered payment. Either complete the payment details and add it to the list, or delete all the details. Then you can proceed to the next step.

A valid card expiry date in the format MM YYYY must be selected from the dropdown lists.
All cards have an expiry date, usually displayed as mm/yy. For instance, 06/12 represents June 2012. The two drop-down boxes are for month and year.

A valid card security number must be entered, this is the last group of three digits printed within the signature strip on the back of the card. If your card does not have a security code enter the text 'NONE'. Failure to enter the code could result in a declined card payment.
The card security code, or CSC, is an important way of confirming that the person making the payment has the physical card. This is because the CSC is not held electronically on the card, so it cannot be read - and potentially stolen - by a swipe reader or Chip & Pin machine..

A valid numeric card number must be entered
The card number is the big number across the middle of the card. Do not enter the spaces, just the digits.

A valid card holder name must be entered
Enter the name as it appears on the card

A house number must be entered.
A street name must be entered.
A town name must be entered.
A post code must be entered.
Please enter your full address details

Sorry, we were unable to process your payment
No money has been taken from your account; no payment has been recorded. You may wish to try again later, but if the problem persists, please report it to our Contact Centre.

Failure Reason: Authorisation Failed. The payment has been declined.
The issuing bank has not allowed us to take a payment from this card. Please refer to your card issuer for further details.



Question: What is Card Security Verification or 3D-Secure?

You may see this screen after you confirm the payment details:

Card Security Verification

You will be redirected to your bank's Card Verification page. After verification you will return to the authorisation process.

If you are not redirected in 5 seconds, click the submit button below.

Redirecting for Card Verification.

3D-Secure is an additional security measure used by some card issuers. During an on-line payment, you may be re-directed to the card issuer's web site, and asked additional security questions to confirm you are the person the card was issued to. If you fail to complete the 3D-Secure process successfully, your payment will not be accepted. This protects you if your card is stolen, and protects the Council from fraudulent payments.

The details of the 3D-Secure process depend on the card issuer. It is not under the Council's control. If you have any questions about this process, you should ask your card issuer.



Question: How else can I pay with a credit or debit card?

If you are unable to pay, or prefer not to pay, using the internet, there some other ways of paying with a credit or debit card.

By Telephone: Phone (01642) 444000. This is a 24-hour service that uses recorded messages to guide you through entering your payment details and card details using a normal touchtone telephone. You can make payments for Council Tax, Parking Fines, Benefit Overpayments, Council Invoices, and Business Rates. This system is also reached by phoning (01642) 774774, and selecting the option "Automated Telephone Payments".

Through the Contact Centre: Phone (01642) 774774, and select any option apart from "Automated Telephone Payments". This service is open during office hours, and lets you speak to someone who will take your payment and card details and process the payment while you are on the phone. You can make payments for most common bills or penalties, including Council Tax, Parking Fines, Benefit Overpayments, and Council Invoices.



Question: How do I get more help?

During office hours, you can phone the Contact Centre on 01642 774774. Alternatively, you can email the Contact Centre at contactus@redcar-cleveland.gov.uk, giving the information listed below.
  • Which browser are you using?
    Internet Explorer, Chrome, Firefox etc? and which version are you using?
  • How did you reach the payment page?
    Did you use the general payments page on the website; did you use another Council service such as the Parking Portal; or did you come via another website such as the Government's Planning Portal?
  • Which web page is giving you an error?
    We need to know what appears in the address bar of your browser; it will usually start http:// or https://.
  • What is the error message?
    The message may be part of the main web page, or appear in a separate window.
  • When did the error occur?
    The date and time that an attempt to pay failed. If you use the time from your computer, please check that it is accurate to within a minute or two. This will help us find the event in our log files.
  • What were you paying for?
    The payment type (eg Council Tax) and reference (eg account or invoice number) may help us identify your payment attempt.
  • What are the first eight digits of your card number?
    This will let us determine exactly what sort of card you are using, and how our system will try to process it. It will not leave you open to fraud, as the first eight digits will be common to many cards.

(If you have the ability, you can answer some of these questions by sending us a screenshot of your browser with the error displayed. However, you should NOT do this if your credit/debit card number is displayed on that page.)
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