Occupied property discounts and exemptions

Exemptions for occupied properties

In the following situations properties are exempt and no Council Tax is charged

  • properties occupied only by students
  • properties occupied only by persons under 18
  • properties occupied only by persons who are severely mentally impaired

If you want to claim one of these Council Tax exemptions, please contact us.

Discounts when two or more people live in a property

When working how much Council Tax you are charged we need to count how many adults aged 18 or over are in your property. If there are two or more adults then you are charged the full rate of Council Tax. In some cases we disregard adults because of their circumstances, meaning we do not count them when working out how many people live in your property.

How much discount can I get if someone is disregarded?

  • If all adults in the property are treated as being disregarded there will be a 50% discount, or in some cases the property will be treated as exempt from the Council Tax.
  • If there is one adult in a property who is not disregarded then they will be entitled to a 25% discount. For example if a couple live in a property and one of them is disregarded because they are classed as severely mentally impaired then their Council Tax bill can be reduced by 25%.
  • If there are two or more people living in the household who are not disregarded then no discount can be awarded. For example a couple live in a property with their son who is an apprentice, then no discount is available because there are three adults resident and only one of them is disregarded.

Categories of people who are disregarded for Council Tax purposes.

There are application forms for each category in the downloads section on the bottom of this page. If you are unable to download the forms, contact us and we will send one to you.

Apprentices

The apprentice needs to working towards a national vocational qualification and earning less than £195 per week.

Carers and care workers

To qualify the carer and person receiving the care need to be the only residents of the property. There are two categories.

  • Carers - people who care for and live in the same house as someone with a disability, who is not their spouse, partner or child under 18. The person being cared for needs to be in receipt of certain disability benefits
  • Care workers - people work for a charity or local authority; are employed for at least 24 hours a week and are paid no more than £44 per week.

Hospital patients or people staying in a nursing home

A person who is resident in hospital for a long term stay, or permanently, can be disregarded for the Council Tax. This discount is not available for people staying in hospital for short periods.

People in a nursing home or care home can also be disregarded. There is a separate application form for this group.

Prisoners

Someone in prison or some other form of detention can be disregarded from the Council Tax. This discount is not available for people who are in prison for non payment of fines or Council Tax.

Severely mentally impaired

People who have been diagnosed as suffering from severe and enduring mental health issues including Alzheimer's disease, other forms of dementia and strokes. The person needs to be in receipt of a disability related benefit, which are listed on the application form.

If all the residents of a property are classed as severely mentally impaired then they are exempt from paying the Council Tax.

Students

Full time students are disregarded. A full time student course is one that

  • lasts for at least one academic or calendar year and
  • you normally attend for at least 24 weeks during the year and
  • you normally take part in at least 21 hours of study, tuition or work experience per week

Some full time student nurses and foreign language assistants are also eligible.

Part time students are not eligible for a discount, but they may be eligible for Housing Benefit and/or Council Tax Support.

If all the residents of a property are classed as full time students then they are exempt from paying the Council Tax.

Young people aged 18 and 19

There are discounts available for the following young people

  • 18 year olds for whom child benefit is being paid
  • 18 or 19 year olds who have left school after 30 April can be disregarded until 1 November in the same year

There is one claim form for both of these categories.

Others

The following people can also be disregarded when looking at the Council Tax. We don't have claim forms for these groups, so please contact us for more information;

  • Members of a religious community - people who have no income or capital of their own and depend on the religious community for support.
  • Foreign diplomats and member of international organisations headquartered in the UK

What happens after I have applied for a Council Tax discount or exemption?

We will look at your application as soon as we can, but whilst you are waiting for our decision you should continue to pay the instalments shown on your Council Tax bill.

Contact for Council Tax