Council tax exemptions
Certain types of property are exempt from council tax and if you meet the criteria you will have nothing to pay.
The explanations of exemptions available are for guidance only and should not be interpreted as legislative definitions.
Claiming a student discount or exemption
If you are a student or there is a student living in your home, you may be entitled to a council tax discount (25%, if all but one resident is disregarded) or a full exemption.
There are three types of students:
- full time university or college students studying on a course for at least 21 hours a week for 24 weeks in the year, for at least one academic or calendar year
- students under 20 years of age studying on a course for at least 12 hours a week for at least three months, that is not higher education
- foreign language assistants appointed at a school or college in Great Britain who are registered with the British Council
If you believe you should be receiving a council tax student discount or exemption, but it is not showing on your bill, complete the council tax incoming occupier form listing all residents living at the property.
For each full time student we require a council tax student certificate covering the full period of your claim. Council tax student certificates can be obtained from your university or college.
From 1 April 2017, a 100% discretionary discount is available to individuals who are care leavers under the age of 25 who live in the City of London, subject to liability considerations. Contact the Council Tax Team for further information.
For details of how to claim an exemption contact the council tax team.
Unoccupied dwellings owned by charities.Can be granted for up to six months after the property first becomes unoccupied.
|Unoccupied property where the sole liable person is being held in detention.|
Unoccupied property which when last occupied was the sole or main residence of a single occupier who is now permanently resident in a hospital or care home.
Unoccupied dwellings where the person who was liable to pay council tax has died. The property has remained unoccupied and grant of probate or letters of administration has not been made. The exemption continues for six months after the grant of probate if the property remains unoccupied.
Occupation prohibited by Law. A property where by reason of action taken to prohibit occupation or with view to acquiring it, under powers conferred by any Act of Parliament.
Unoccupied dwellings held for a minister of religion. A residence from which he or she will perform the duties of their office.
Unoccupied dwelling left empty by the owner or tenant in order to receive personal care elsewhere (in a place that is not a hospital or care home).
Dwellings left empty by a person providing personal care. Where an owner or tenant has changed their place of residence in order to provide personal care for someone else.
Dwellings left unoccupied by a student (or by students). Provided the unoccupied property was last occupied by a student and no one else apart from students lived in the property. The exemption only continues for so long as the person remains a student.
Unoccupied property where mortgagee (bank/building society) is in possession. Exemption applies when the dwelling is vacated by the occupants.
Halls of residence for students. Provided the accommodation is owned or managed by a prescribed educational establishment.
Dwellings occupied only by students. The students must be undertaking a full time course of education at a recognised place of education. (further details of student exemptions are detailed above)
Armed forces accommodation (UK forces). Living accommodation which is owned by the Secretary of State for Defence is exempt.
Dwellings occupied by a Member (and dependants) of visiting forces. If a person has a relevant association with a visiting force and in occupation an exemption applies.
Dwellings left empty by bankrupt. Where the empty property is managed by trustee in bankruptcy.
A caravan pitch or boat mooring which is not occupied is exempt.
Dwellings occupied only by persons aged under 18.
Unoccupied annexe to an occupied dwelling. A dwelling which forms part of a property which includes another dwelling (mainly known as a granny annexe) where it may not be let separately from the main dwelling.
Property occupied only by people who are severely mentally impaired and who would otherwise be liable to pay the council tax.
Dwellings which are the main residence of a person with diplomatic privilege or immunity. The person must not be a British subject or Citizen.
Occupied annexes. Part of the property is occupied separately (as a self contained annexe) by a dependant relative of the family who lives in the other part of the building.