The Office for National Statistics is warning that the final deadline for completing the 2021 census electronic questionnaire is now just a few days away – or you could risk having to pay a £1,000 fine.
Your last chance to complete Census 2021 online is just a few days away, with the electronic questionnaire closing on Monday, May 24.
A spokesperson said: “A fantastic 97% of households across England and Wales have already taken part to make sure they are counted when it comes to local services like GP surgeries, school places and hospital beds.
“However, those who have not filled in their form are legally required to do so and should complete their census now to avoid a £1,000 fine.
It only takes around 10 minutes per person to complete online, but after 24 May, only paper questionnaires can be returned. If people refuse to take part, they could be taken to court and issued with a fine and criminal record.”
The census non-compliance operation will begin on Tuesday, May 25, with specialist teams visiting those who have yet to respond. They will interview householders under caution.
Note that they will never issue a fine or ask for a payment on the doorstep, over the phone by text message or on social media. For a fine to be imposed, your case must go to court for non-completion of the census.
Iain Bell, deputy national statistician at the Office for National Statistics, said: “We’ve had a phenomenal response to Census 2021 so far, and I would like to thank everyone who has taken part. The information you provided will help to inform decisions that affect our everyday lives, from bus routes to GP surgeries, for years to come.
“It is incredibly important that anyone who hasn’t yet responded does so as soon as possible.”
A sample of households are also being invited to take part in the Census Coverage Survey (CCS). This short, separate, and interviewer-led survey is an important way for the ONS to get a final view of the response rates. By taking part, you will improve the quality of the information the census gathers. This, in turn, helps to plan and fund local services in your community.
Help and paper questionnaires are still available to request until Friday, June 11, through the census contract centre on freephone number 0800 141 2021 in England and 0800 169 2021 in Wales.