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Discounts and Disregards

Apply for a council tax discount

Students

When determining the number of residents in a property for the purpose of council tax, a person can be disregarded if he or she is a student. If the number of adult occupants who are not disregarded is either one or none, a discount can apply. To qualify as a student for the purpose of council tax, a person must be either:

  • Undertaking a full-time course of higher education with a prescribed educational establishment (the course must last at least one year and involve at least an average 21 hours per week for at least 24 weeks in the year)
  • Under 20 years of age and undertaking a course which lasts more than three calendar months and involves at least 12 hours per week

In addition, the person must supply a council tax certificate issued by the college or university. Please note that a certificate of enrolment or a notification of grant award letter is not acceptable. The educational establishment must be situated in a member state of the European Union and established solely or mainly for the purpose of providing further or higher education.

The following are available if:

  • All residents are students - exemption from council tax
  • All but one resident is a student - a 25 per cent discount for the household
  • The property is owned by a student and was last occupied by that student, exemption from council tax

Apprentices

When working out the number of residents in a property for the purpose of council tax, a person can be disregarded if he or she is an apprentice. If the number of adult occupants who are not disregarded is either one or none, a discount can apply. To qualify as an apprentice a person must be:

  • Employed for the purpose of learning a trade, business, profession, office, employment or vocation
  • For that purpose, undertaking a programme of training leading to a qualification accredited by the National Council for Vocational Qualification or the Scottish Vocational Education Council
  • Employed for a total salary or allowance (or both) substantially less than the salary he or she would be likely to receive if he or she had achieved the qualification in question and no more than £196 per week

Youth trainees

When determining the number of residents in a property for the purpose of council tax, a person can be disregarded if he or she is a youth trainee. If the number of adult occupants who are not disregarded is either one or none, a discount can apply. To qualify as a youth trainee a person must be:

  • Under the age of 25 years
  • Training under a youth training arrangement

18-year-olds eligible for child benefit

When deciding the number of residents in a property for the purpose of council tax, a person can be disregarded if he or she is over 18 years old and entitled to have child benefit claimed for them. If the number of adult occupants who are not disregarded is either one or none, a discount can apply. To qualify under this disregard:

  • The person must have reached the age of 18 years
  • Another person must be entitled to claim child benefit for them

School leavers

When determining the number of residents in a property for the purpose of council tax, a person can be disregarded if he or she is a school leaver. If the number of adult occupants who are not disregarded is either one or none, a discount can apply. To qualify as a school leaver, the person must:

  • Be under the age of 20 years
  • Have finished a qualifying course of education within the period after 30 April and before 1 November in the year to which the application relates

Where both of the above apply, the person will be disregarded for council tax purposes until 1 November of the same year.

Prisoners

When determining the number of residents in a property for the purpose of council tax, a person can be disregarded if he or she is a prisoner in detention. If the number of adult occupants who are not disregarded is either one or none, a discount can apply. Detention for non-payment of fines or council tax is not a valid reason for claiming this reduction.

Severely mentally impaired people (SMI)

When determining the number of residents in a property for the purpose of council tax, a person can be disregarded if he or she is severely mentally impaired. If the number of adult occupants who are not disregarded is either one or none, a discount can apply. To qualify as severely mentally impaired for this purpose, a person must be:

  • Confirmed as severely mentally impaired by a registered medical practitioner
  • Entitled to one of a number of certain qualifying benefits

Please apply for an SMI disregard using our form.

 

Carers

Who qualifies as a home carer or care worker

Home carers

A home carer is someone who:

  • lives with the person they care for;
  • provides care for an average of at least 35 hours a week;
  • is not caring for their husband, wife, or partner;
  • is not a parent caring for a child under 18.

The person cared for must be receiving one of these relevant benefits:

  • higher or lower rate of Attendance Allowance
  • higher or middle rate of care component of Disability Living Allowance
  • the daily living component of Personal Independence Payment
  • an increase in the rate of Disablement Pension or an increase in Constant Attendance Allowance

You will need to provide proof with your application that the person cared for is receiving one of the benefits shown above.

Care workers

  • provides care or support on behalf of a 'relevant body' or was introduced to and is employed by the person they care for by a 'relevant body' (a relevant body is a local authority, central government or a charity)
  • is employed to provide this care for at least 24 hours a week
  • is paid £44 or less per week and lives in the property provided​

 

Long-term in-patients and care home residents

When determining the number of residents in a property for the purpose of council tax, a person can be disregarded if he or she is in hospital as a long-term in-patient or living in a care home. If the number of adult occupants who are not disregarded is either one or none, a discount can apply. To qualify for this discount a person must:

  • Have their sole or main residence in a residential care home, a nursing home, a mental nursing home, a hostel or a hospital: the term sole or main residence is not defined in Council Tax legislation, although case law on the subject suggests that temporary absence from home does not constitute a change of residency
  • Be receiving care or treatment

To apply for any of these discounts please complete the discount form.

If your circumstances change

If your circumstances change in a way which affects your entitlement to receive a discount or exemption, please complete the relevant form immediately.

Landlords can notify us of change in council tax tenancy.

Find out further information on other discounts.
 

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