Households across the country have been reminded to complete a census this weekend.
A census is required by law every 10 years – and census day in England, Wales and Northern Ireland this year is Sunday, March 21st.
In England and Wales the census is carried out by the National Statistics Office.
The data in the census is used for a variety of activities – including allowing the government to decide how much money each area needs for its local schools, parks, transportation, and hospitals.
This week, Money Saving Expert reminded people that there is a risk of being fined up to £ 1,000 if you fail to complete the census.
A spokesman for the National Statistics Bureau explained what will actually happen if you fail to complete the census this weekend – or as soon as possible afterwards.
She said, “According to the government’s latest Covid-19 guidelines, field workers are being deployed across the country to contact those who have not responded.
“They will offer help and advice to those who need it, reminding people that their census is a legal requirement. However, they will never set foot on property.
“All contact with the public will be socially distant and field workers will be equipped with PPE in accordance with government guidelines. They will function similarly to postmen and supermarket deliverers who worked during the pandemic.
“We will make every effort to help people fill out their forms and we will provide assistance wherever possible – including assistance to those who are having difficulty filling out online.”
“The census is a legal obligation that we will pursue as a last resort to prosecute those who actively refuse.”
The MSE The website says: “In England and Wales, in the last census in 2011, four people received the maximum fine of £ 1,000 for non-compliance, while a further 270 people were fined an average of £ 218.”
Most of the census questions are mandatory, but if you want to answer them without your family seeing what you said, you can fill them in secretly.
The rules state that the form should be completed on March 21st.