Homebreadcrumb separatorCouncil Taxbreadcrumb separatorCouncil Tax discounts, reductions and exemptions

Council Tax discounts, reductions and exemptions

There are a number of situations in which people can qualify for Council Tax discounts, reductions or exemptions based upon the status of the property and/or its residents.

You can apply for some Council Tax discounts using Council Tax Online

 

Reductions you can claim

 

Residents who are disregarded

Council Tax is based upon 2 adults living in a property. Some residents can be disregarded, reducing the number of residents for tax purposes.

For example, if there are two adults living in a property, but one of them is a full-time student, the number of residents for Council Tax purposes is 1, and the non-student would qualify for a discount of 25%.

The following types of resident are not counted for tax purposes:

  • full time students, student nurses, apprentices and Youth Training trainees, non-British spouses of students
  • patients resident in a hospital
  • being looked after in care homes
  • severely mentally impaired
  • staying in certain hostels and night shelters
  • 18 and 19 year-olds who are at, or have just left, school
  • care workers working for low pay, usually for charities
  • caring for someone with a disability who is not a spouse, partner or child under 18
  • members of visiting forces and certain international institutions
  • members of religious communities (i.e., monks and nuns)
  • in prison (except those in prison for non-payment of council tax or a fine)
  • diplomats

 

Single occupancy discount

If only one adult lives in a property, as their sole or main residence, the Council Tax bill is reduced by 25%.

You can apply for or cancel your Single Occupancy discount 

 

Care Leaver discount

There is a 100% discount for people who leave care in Walsall, if:

  • Walsall Council was the Corporate Parent
  • the care leaver is liable for Council Tax and resident in the Walsall area
  • the care leaver is under the age of 25

 

Occupied properties that are exempt

If a dwelling meets any of the following criteria, it does not incur Council Tax:

  • students’ halls of residence
  • a dwelling only occupied by students
  • UK armed forces accommodation
  • visiting forces accommodation
  • a dwelling occupied only by people under 18
  • a dwelling occupied only by a person or persons who is/are severely mentally impaired and who would otherwise have to pay council tax
  • a dwelling occupied by a diplomat
  • an annexe to another occupied dwelling which is occupied by an elderly or disabled relative
 

Empty and vacant properties

There is no Council Tax reduction for empty or vacant properties.

If a property is unoccupied and unfurnished for more than 2 years (and is not exempt) then it will be subject to double the normal rate of Council Tax.

From 1 April 2020 if a property has been empty for more than 5 years, then it will be subject to 3 times the normal rate of Council Tax.

From April 2021 if a property has been empty for more than ten years, then it will be subject to 4 times the normal rate of Council Tax.

Vacant dwellings do not incur Council Tax, if they:

  • are owned by a charity (exempt for up to 6 months)
  • are left empty by someone who has gone into prison (except those in prison for non-payment of council tax or a fine)
  • are left empty by someone who has moved to receive personal care in a hospital/home or elsewhere
  • are waiting for probate or letters of administration to be granted (and up to six months after)
  • are empty because their occupation is prohibited by law
  • are waiting to be occupied by a minister of religion
  • are left empty by someone living elsewhere because they are providing personal care to another person
  • are left empty by students
  • have been repossessed
  • are the responsibility of a bankrupt’s trustee
  • are caravan pitches or boat moorings
  • are dwellings in the form of an annexe to another occupied dwelling