Council Tax Reduction
If you are on a low income, you may be able to claim Council Tax Reduction to help pay the Council Tax.
How do I claim Council Tax Reduction?
The quickest way to claim is on the Apply for Council Tax Reduction page.
You can also telephone 0207 361 3006, and ask for a claim form.
You will need to provide evidence to support your claim. The form tells you what you need to provide. If you do not have all the documents we need at the time, you can send things to us later - but send the form in quickly.
What affects how much Council Tax Reduction I receive?
Your income, your savings and your personal circumstances. You must provide evidence of your income, your partner’s income and any money earned by other members of your household. This includes all the money you have coming in, from all sources. If you are in doubt about any income you should declare it.
You also have to provide evidence of your savings. As a general rule, if you have capital valued at more than £16,000, you will not be entitled to Council Tax Reduction. However, if there is a cost involved in disposing of a capital asset, ten per cent of the value is disregarded. So, for example, someone with stocks and shares worth £17,000 would have £1,700 disregarded and might qualify.
You will need to tell us the details of everyone in your household. This includes your partner, dependent children, grown up children, lodgers, flat sharers, sub-tenants and friends.
How is Council Tax Reduction calculated?
If you receive Jobseeker’s Allowance (income-based), Employment and Support Allowance (income-related), Income Support, Pension Credit Guarantee, or your only income is Universal Credit, and have no other people living with you, you will be entitled to 100 per cent reduction.
If you have other people living with you, such as a working son or daughter, or your income is higher, then you will usually get less than the maximum reduction.
If you receive Universal Credit and you are working, your Council Tax Reduction will be calculated with a banded income scheme. Please see the Advice and benefits web pages for more information.
If you qualify for a reduction, it will normally be awarded from the week after we receive your claim.
Benefit can be backdated if you would have been entitled to it earlier and can give us a good reason why you did not claim it.
Special rules for students
If you are a full-time student you can only claim a reduction if you fall within one of the Government’s ‘vulnerable groups’, which includes single parents, disabled students and pensioners.
Alternative Council Tax Reduction scheme
If your income or savings are too high to qualify for Council Tax Reduction, you might still be able to get help if you share your home with one or more other people who are on a low income. If you live with someone over 18 who is:
- not paying you rent
- not liable to pay Council Tax
- not your partner, and
- on a low income
then you might qualify for Alternative Council Tax Reduction based on their income. You can claim this online on our page to Apply for Council Tax Reduction or by calling us on 020 7361 3006, and asking for a form.
Help with your rent
If you have a low income, you may also be able to get help to pay your rent.
This help is usually through Universal Credit. Universal Credit is gradually replacing Housing Benefit.
However, if any of the following apply, you can still apply for Housing Benefit:
- you are pension age
- you live in temporary accommodation
- you live in supported accommodation
Please see the Advice and benefits web pages for more information.
Help us to fight fraud
To report suspected benefit fraud, please telephone the DWP National Benefit Fraud Hotline 0800 854 440 (textphone 0800 328 0512).
For all other fraud against the Council, please contact 020 7361 2777 or email us at: firstname.lastname@example.org.