Energy bills have risen steeply over the last few months. This has prompted the government to launch a package of measures to help us all handle our increased living costs.
One of the widest-reaching help measures the government is introducing is a £150 Council Tax rebate. It’s thought 80% of households in England, Scotland and Wales will receive this.
What is the Council Tax rebate?
The £150 Council Tax rebate is a one-off payment you’ll receive from your local council. Unlike some of the other measures in the government’s help package, you won’t have to pay it back.
Who is eligible to receive the Council Tax rebate?
You’re eligible to receive the Council Tax rebate if:
- as a household, you’re liable for the Council Tax bill (rather than your landlord or somebody else taking responsibility for it)
- the property you live in is in Council Tax bands A-D
The government is trying to make sure those who most need financial support are getting it. So, you may still be eligible to receive the Council Tax rebate, even if you’re normally exempt from paying Council Tax. For example, some students, under 18s, and people with severe additional support needs will still be eligible to receive this rebate.
How do I claim the Council Tax rebate?
If you’re eligible to receive the Council Tax rebate, you won’t need to submit a claim for it. Your local council will take care of everything, and will contact you if they need you to do anything in order to receive your money.
If you normally pay your Council Tax bill by direct debit, then your local council can use the bank details they already hold for you to pay the rebate straight into your account.
If you usually pay another way, then the council will likely need to contact you to arrange to pay you. You may get a cheque through the post, a discount off your council tax bill, or a voucher that you can cash in.
When will I receive my payment?
Local councils started processing payments for the Council Tax rebate in April 2022. So, you may have received your payment already, or it may still be on the way. The government website indicates that it may take until the end of September for all payments to be made.
Your local council’s website may have information on when you can expect to receive your payment, or you may be able to contact them to ask, too.
What if I’ve been missed out from this scheme?
In the unlikely event that you’re eligible for the Council Tax rebate but don’t receive it, then contact your local council straight away. They should be able to confirm your eligibility and help make sure you get any money you’re due.
Remember, it will take councils a while to work through everyone’s payments, so there’s likely a good reason for any delays. Each council will be working to their own system to pay everyone, so even if your neighbours have all received theirs, it doesn’t mean you should have had yours, too, or that it’s not still on the way.
I contribute to my Council Tax bill but I’m not the official bill payer. What can I do?
If you contribute towards the cost of your household’s Council Tax bill, but someone else you live with pays the bill from their account, then the rebate you receive will probably be paid directly into their account, too.
It’s then up to you to discuss with the bill payer and other people you live with if, and how you’ll share the money between you.
I’m not sure if I’m eligible – how do I check my Council Tax band to find out?
If you’re not sure which Council Tax band your home is in, you can check online using the government website. Remember, to be eligible to receive the Council Tax rebate, your home will need to be in Council Tax bands A, B, C or D.
If you check your Council Tax band and think it’s wrong, you can also use the government’s website to file an appeal. If your appeal is successful, then not only could this make you eligible to receive the Council Tax rebate when you weren’t before, but you may also receive a refund of overpaid Council Tax, backdated to when you moved in (or 1993, if you moved in before this date). This could be worth thousands of pounds!
What if I’m not eligible for the Council Tax rebate?
If your property is in Council Tax bands E-H, then you won’t be eligible to receive the rebate as part of this scheme. But, you may be able to claim from the Discretionary Fund.
This is a pot of money from the government that’s been shared out among local councils so they have funds to give to people who won’t receive a Council Tax rebate but still need some help. Each council is organising their own eligibility criteria and process to claim from the Discretionary Fund, so check your council’s website or contact them for more information.
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