Council Tax - discount
also known as: Discount.
Find out if you are entitled to a discount on your Council Tax which may reduce the amount that you pay
Index of information on this page
Council Tax Discounts
The amount of Council Tax you pay is based on both the valuation
band your property is in as well as the number of people over 18 in
Full Council Tax assumes there are at least two adults in your
Single Persons Discount
If you are the only adult in your property you get a 25%
discount on your Council Tax. This applies to single
occupancy only where it is the sole/main residence. This discount
does not apply if the house is empty or if it is not your sole/main
To apply you will need to fill in a single
persons application form or request one from the contact
If you have become the sole adult in your property as a result
of another person moving out we need a forwarding address for that
person to process your discount.
If you have a partner or adult children who work away they will
usually be regarded as living in the family home. Please check with
us to be sure.
Has your entitlement to Single Person Discount changed?
We urge residents to come forward and
let us know if they have had a change in their circumstances
that would affect their entitlement to Council Tax single person
If you do receive a review form, it is vital
that you fill it in promptly and accurately.
Failure to return the review form may result
in your discount being removed. Anyone who knowingly supplies false
information may also be liable for a fine.
If you are no longer the only eligible adult
living in the property (an adult is someone aged 18 or more) then
you should contact the Council Tax Team on 0845 600 6400.
Certain adults are not counted for Council Tax purposes. They
are referred to as disregarded persons. This means when we count
the number of people in your property they are ignored.
Should there be only one adult counted in your property you will
be entitled to a 25% discount.
The categories of disregarded persons are listed below along
with the evidence required to disregard them from Council Tax at a
To apply you will need to complete a disregard
discount application form. Some applications will require a
supplementary form to be filled in which is available for
Status of Person - we need the following proof:
- Student or student nurse - Student Exemption
Certificate. Please provide us with your original student
certificate which is available from your university or college
registrar. Your original will then be returned to you.
- Apprentice - Apprentice
application form completed by employer and 1 recent
- 18 and receives child benefit - Evidence that
child benefit is being paid such as DWP letter or bank
- Severely mentally impaired - Completed
mentally impaired application form, doctors certificate and
evidence of qualifying benefit. (The General Medical Services
Committee of the BMA has agreed that medical certificates for this
purpose should be issued free of charge to the applicant or his/her
- In detention - Letter from the prison
confirming date of detention and expected release date.
- Resident in hospital - Letter confirming the
name and address of the hospital and that the stay is permanent
(minimum 6 months).
- Resident in nursing / care home - Letter
confirming the name and address of care home and that the stay is
- Careworker - Written confirmation that the
carer lives there, works at least 24 hours per week and earns no
more than £44.00 per week.
- Caring for someone with a disability -
application form, evidence of qualifying benefit. The person
being cared for must be over 18. You will NOT
qualify for this discount if the person you care for is your
spouse/partner or your own child under 18 years of age.
- Resident in a hostel - Letter confirming
residency in hostel, including the name and address of the
- Member of a religious community - Letter
confirming person is dependant on the community for all their
- Under 20 and still at school or a recent school
leaver - Written confirmation from the school
- Non-British spouse or dependant of a student -
Confirmation of the terms of their residency in the UK and that
they cannot work or claim benefit.
- Member of an International HQ or defence organisation
i.e SHAPE (Supreme Headquarters Allied Powers
Europe) - Letter from the applicable
International HQ or defence organisation.
- Diplomatic immunity or privileges - Letter
from the relevant embassy.
- Member or dependant of a visiting force -
Letter from the visiting force headquarters.
Please ensure when applying that all required evidence /
information is provided. This allows us to process your application
quickly and accurately. Applications made without the necessary
evidence cannot be processed until the evidence is
Important Council Tax changes from 1 April 2013 for empty
The Government has introduced major changes to
the financial framework in which the Council operates which has
introduced significant financial risk and uncertainty whilst
funding has been cut in some vital support areas.
The changes the Government has made are being introduced from April
2013 and leave the Council facing unprecedented financial pressures
in order to balance its budget and continue to provide quality
services for residents.
The Local Government Finance Act 2012
introduced the changes that could be made to Council Tax discounts
and exemptions for second homes and certain empty properties.
The changes allow the Council greater flexibility over the amount
of council tax that is charged.
With effect from 1 April 2013 the current
Class A and Class C Council Tax exemptions will be abolished. The
existing 10% discount that is available for second homes will be
removed and an empty homes premium will be charged on properties
which have been unoccupied and substantially unfurnished for more
than 2 years.
Second Home Discounts
Properties deemed as ‘second homes’ (which also includes
empty furnished lets) that had been entitled to a 10% discount will
now be subject to a full Council Tax charge as the 10% discount is
being removed with effect from 1 April 2013.
The following information is only relevant for the
financial year 2012-2013.
If you have a property in addition to your main home then you
should be entitled to a discount. Properties that are empty and
furnished get a 10% discount.
If you have a property that you would like to claim second home
discount for please apply in writing stating the address of your
A family may also have another property, either in the UK or
abroad, which they consider as much of a home as their property
within Northumberland. It is likely that your property within
Northumberland will be regarded as your main home, but in these
circumstances it is necessary to determine where the main home
If you feel these circumstances apply to you please email
contact the council tax team on 0845 600 6400
Empty Homes Premium
From 1 April 2013 if a property has been unoccupied and
substantially unfurnished for more than 2 years an Empty Homes
Premium will be charged. This amounts to a council tax charge of
150%. Failure to notify the Council within 21 days of a change in
circumstances that may affect the premium could result in a civil
penalty of £70 or £280.
Council Tax Support
There are two types of support available to
help you meet your council tax payments.
Main Council Tax Support is assessed on the
income of the person or persons liable to pay Council Tax.
Reductions of up to 100% of the amount payable are available. If
your income exceeds the amount the Government says you need to live
on, a deduction is made from the full amount of support available.
A further reduction may be made in respect of other adults living
Second Adult Rebate is available where there
is only one person liable to pay the Council Tax and they share
their home with one or more other people, on a non-commercial
basis. The amount of Second Adult Rebate granted is not linked to
the income of the person liable to pay the Council Tax, but to the
income of the other persons living with them. You cannot normally
claim Second Adult Rebate if you live with your partner.
Only Main Council Tax Support or Second Adult
Rebate can be granted, not both. The higher amount of the two
will be granted if both types of reduction are applied for.
If you are unsure if you would qualify for a discount or
require clarification of any of the discounts available please
All forms are to be returned to:
Council Tax Section
Northumberland County Council