Council Tax Discounts and Exemptions

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Discount disregards
Exemptions
Disabled Reduction

Discount disregards
When looking at the number of residents in a property for council tax purposes certain persons can be disregarded or ‘not counted’ when we look at the number of residents aged eighteen or over who are resident. A list of these "discount disregards" is below. If the number of adult occupants who are not disregarded is either one or none, a reduction can apply. If one adult is counted a reduction of 25% applies. If all adults can be disregarded then a 50% reduction is applicable.

Below is a list of discount disregards. Items in blue are clickable links to online forms you can complete to apply for a discount disregard. you will need your Council Tax account number (shown on your bill) to complete these forms.

  • Students - You will need to provide a copy of a student certificate from the student's college or university. Please scan a copy of the certificate onto your computer so that you can upload it with the form. Please note, this may not be required if the student attends Staffordshire or Keele University- as both universities issue lists to us each year of all their full time students. However, if the students aren't on these lists, a certificate will be required. We will write to you to request one if necessary.
  • Apprentices and certain trainees
  • People in detention
  • The severely mentally impaired - you can also download an application form at the bottom of this page. If you submit the claim online using this link, you will need to also submit a doctor's certificate (see the bottom of this page for a downloadable copy)- you will need to take this to a doctor to complete, then scan it onto your computer to submit with the form. You will also need to supply proof of qualifying benefits, unless you claim housing benefit or Council Tax Support, in which case we should already have this evidence; 
  • People resident in a care home or hospital
  • Carers and resident care workers (i.e. care workers who live in the property of the person they are caring for);   - You will also need to supply proof of qualifying benefits for the person being cared for, unless they claim housing benefit or Council Tax Support, in which case we should already have this evidence;  Please scan these to your computer before completing the form. You cannot claim the carer's disregard if you care for your spouse or partner or a dependant child under 18.
  • Those aged 18 or over who child benefit is payable for; 
  • 18 or 19 year olds still at school (or recently left); 
  • People caring for someone with a disability (but not their spouse or child under 18).

Empty and Second Homes
The discounts given for empty properties are:

Type of home Discount
Empty and unfurnished 0%
Second homes or empty but furnished 0%
Empty and unfurnished 0%
Work-related accommodation 50%

 

Type of home Premium
Empty and unfurnished for 24 months +50%

 


Exemptions
We may be able to give an exemption if the property is included on the following list. Items in blue are clickable links to online forms you can complete. you will need your Council Tax account number (shown on your bill) to complete these forms.

  • Left empty by a person in detention.
  • Vacant and owned by a charity (exempt for up to 6 months
  • Left empty because a person is resident in a care home or hospital
  • Property left empty by a deceased person where probate or letters of administration are to be granted (up to 6 months after grant). 
  • Occupation is forbidden by law. 
  • Held for occupation by a minister of religion. 
  • Left empty by someone who is receiving or providing personal care. 
  • Left empty by someone who goes away to study elsewhere, who also owns the property. 
  • In possession of a mortgagee (i.e. repossessed properties). 
  • A hall of residence. 
  • Dwelling occupied solely by full-time students. - You will need to provide a copy of a student certificate from your college or university. Please scan a copy of your certificate onto your computer so that you can upload it with the form (not required if you attend either Staffordshire or Keele University).
     
  • Armed forces accommodation. 
  • Occupied by visiting forces. 
  • Held by a trustee in bankruptcy. 
  • Unoccupied caravan pitch or boat mooring. 
  • Occupied solely by persons under 18 years of age. 
  • An unoccupied ‘granny flat’ or annexe. 
  • All liable persons are severely mentally impaired -you can also download an application form at the bottom of this page. If you submit the claim online using this link, you will need to also submit a doctor's certificate (see the bottom of this page for a downloadable copy)- you will need to take this to a doctor to complete, then scan it onto your computer to submit with the form. You will also need to supply proof of qualifying benefits, unless you claim housing benefit or Council Tax Support, in which case we should already have this evidence;
     
  • Occupied by a diplomat. 
  • An annexe occupied by a dependant relative.

Disabled Reduction
Regulations allow us to reduce the Council Tax payable by one valuation band for houses that have additional disability facilities. These must be essential, or of major importance to, the wellbeing of a person who is substantially and permanently physically disabled.

For example: If your home is in valuation band D, your Council Tax bill will be reduced to that for a band C property. If your home is in the lowest valuation band, band A, your council tax will be reduced by the same amount as a band B property.

To apply for Disabled Reduction, the qualifying disabled person (owner/occupier or tenant, not necessarily the person paying Council Tax) must have their sole or main residence in the house and must meet at least one of the qualifying conditions.

To qualify:

  • you or a member of your household is a qualifying disabled person; and 
  • your home has the relevant feature(s) essential for meeting the needs of the disabled person. These are:

- a room (other than a bathroom, kitchen or toilet) predominantly used by and required for meeting the needs of the disabled person.
- an additional bathroom or kitchen required for meeting the needs of the disabled person.
- sufficient floor space to permit the indoor use of a wheelchair required for meeting the needs of the disabled person.

Call us on 01782 234234 to arrange a visit to your home to check that you qualify. When assessing your claim it will help us if you can provide a note from a doctor or other suitably qualified person, for example, a social worker or occupational therapist. The note should state that, in their opinion, the disabled person needs the special feature(s) due to the nature and extent of their disability.

You can complete an online form here to apply for Disabled Relief.


If you think that you may be eligible for a Council Tax discount or exemption, you can apply through the Online Account – click here for more information.

For advice on eligibility, you can fill in our simple online enquiry form, which allows you to upload evidence documents if you need to.  You can also call us on 01782 234234.

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