Discounts and Exemptions for Council tax

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Council Tax Discounts

From 1 April 2013 onwards, where a property is unfurnished and unoccupied there will be no discount once an initial one month exemption period has expired.

There will be no discount for furnished properties that are no-one's sole or main residence (second homes).

If the liable person has left the property unoccupied because they need to live elsewhere due to their employment, it is possible to claim a discount of 50% but certain terms and conditions need to be met.

Properties that have been empty for two years or more will be charged a council tax premium of 50% on top of a full bill.

Your full council tax bill is based on at least two adults (over 18 years) living in a property. You may be eligible for 25% discount if you live alone or if some of the people you live with do not count for council tax purposes.

Single Persons Discount

If:

  • You live alone without any other residents (over 18 years) in the property
  • Some of the people living in the property are not counted for council tax purposes.

To apply please use the Single Person Discount online form.

Army & Service Personnel

A discount is not applicable if a member of your household is away in the armed forces. This is because your property would be classed as their main residence for Council Tax purposes. However deployed armed forces personnel who normally pay Council Tax may be entitled to Council Tax relief directly from the Ministry of Defence. For more information visit http://www.mod.uk/.

Adults Disregarded

Some people will also get a discount because they, or the people who live with them, are not counted for council tax purposes.

They include:

  • full-time students
  • youth training trainees
  • apprentices and some student nurses
  • patients resident in hospital
  • people who are being looked after in care homes
  • severely mentally-impaired people
  • people staying in certain hostels or night shelters
  • 18 and 19 year olds who are at, or who have just left, school
  • care workers on low pay, normally working for charities
  • people caring for someone with a disability other than their partner or a child under 18
  • members of visiting forces and some international institutions
  • members of religious communities
  • people who are in prison (unless they are in prison for not paying Council Tax or a fine)

To apply for any of the above please see applications below.

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Exemptions

From 1 April 2013 there were major changes relating to some Council Tax exemptions. Exempt Class A and Exempt Class C which both relate to empty properties will no longer exist.

You do not have to pay council tax on the following:

  • Class B: unoccupied property owned by a charity (up to six months)
  • Class D: unoccupied property which was the home of someone who has gone into detention
  • Class E: unoccupied property which was the home of someone who has gone into a residential home or hospital to receive residential care
  • Class F (online application): unoccupied property which is left empty by the deceased and waiting for probate or letters of administration to be granted (exemption lasts until probate is granted and for six months after this, while unoccupied)
  • Class G: unoccupied property where occupation is forbidden by law
  • Class H: unoccupied property which is awaiting occupation by a minister of religion
  • Class I: unoccupied property which was the home of someone who has moved into another residence (other than a residential home or hospital) to receive personal care
  • Class J: property left unoccupied by someone who has moved away to provide personal care for another person
  • Class K: unoccupied property where the owner is a full-time student who last lived in the property as their main home
  • Class L: unoccupied property which has been repossessed by a mortgage lender
  • Class M: student halls of residence
  • Class N: property occupied only by students
  • Class O: property owned by the Secretary of State for Defence for armed forces' accommodation
  • Class P: property occupied by visiting forces
  • Class Q: unoccupied property where the person who is liable for the council tax is a trustee in bankruptcy
  • Class R: a pitch or mooring which is not occupied by a caravan or boat
  • Class S: a dwelling occupied only by persons under the age of 18
  • Class T: an unoccupied dwelling which is self-contained but forms part of another dwelling and cannot be let separately under planning control, eg. annexe for an elderly person
  • Class U: a dwelling occupied only by people who are severely mentally impaired
  • Class V: a dwelling occupied by someone entitled to diplomatic immunity
  • Class W (application): a dwelling which is self-contained but which forms part of another dwelling, eg. an annexe occupied by elderly or disabled relatives.

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Local Exemptions

The Royal Borough has agreed that from 1 April 2004 there will be a 100% exemption from council tax for up to 12 months for any dwelling which has been rendered uninhabitable as a result of a natural disaster and which requires substantial building or remedial works to make it habitable again.

People with Disabilities

You may be entitled to a reduction in your bill if your home has one of the following:

  • a room which is predominantly used and required for meeting the needs of a disabled resident or
  • an additional bathroom or kitchen required for meeting the needs of a disabled resident
  • sufficient floor space to permit the use of a wheelchair required for meeting the needs of a disabled resident.

This reduction is calculated by charging your council tax on the valuation band below which your home is in. It will be shown separately on your bill as a reduction.

Council Tax Support

If you are of working age on a low income with less than £16,000 in savings, you could be entitled to up to 90% reduction.

If you are of pensionable age on a low income with less than £16,000 in savings, you could be entitled to up to 100% reduction.

For further information, telephone our Benefits Helpline on: 01628 683850 or e-mail: benefits@rbwm.gov.uk

We are pleased to help many Council Taxpayers in this way. Unfortunately, there are those who abuse the system. Tell us in confidence if you suspect anyone is claiming benefit they are not entitled to help us 'Beat the Cheat'. Call our free 'Beat the Cheat' line on 0500 353300.

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Applications

Adults disregarded Application Forms

  • Student Discount
  • Apprentices and Youth Trainees
  • Severelly Mentally Impaired Persons
  • 18 - 19 year olds at or left school
  • Care Workers
  • Carers
  • Member of a Religious Community
  • Persons in Detention

Exemption

People with Disabilities

  • Disabled Person

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Modified: 2014-04-01
Published: Mon, 24 Nov 2014 10:31:57
Author: Allison Helyer
Editor: Allison.Helyer
LGSL PID: 59
RDCMS ID: 1830
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