Pensioners could get their Council Tax paid in full – are you eligible?

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For many pensioners, keeping up with all their bills can be a challenge, especially if they do not have a regular salary coming in anymore. Fortunately, they may be able to receive a helping hand through Council Tax Support and reduce their housing costs in the process.

Council Tax Support, sometimes called Council Tax Reduction, is a benefit which helps people who are on a low income or claiming certain benefits with their Council Tax bill.

Council Tax Reduction replaced Council Tax Benefit in April 2013.

How much can people get?

Those who receive the Guarantee Credit element of Pension Credit might get their Council Tax paid in full.

However, people who do not receive Guarantee Credit may still get some support if they have a low income and less than £16,000 in savings.

The amount of support available may vary as each local council is responsible for operating its own Council Tax Support scheme.

The level of support someone can get is dependent on many variables, such as:

  • Which benefits they receive
  • Their age
  • Their income
  • Their savings
  • Who they live with
  • How much Council Tax they pay

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People who receive a disability or carers benefit may be able to get more Council Tax Support.

Who is eligible?

People who are on a low income or receiving certain benefits may be able to claim Council Tax Support.

There are different rules for each specific council, so people should check with their local council to find out what, if anything, they are entitled to.

Someone may be entitled to up to 100 percent council tax support if they:

  • Are a pensioner
  • Are entitled to a disability premium or disabled child premium
  • Are entitled to Employment Support Allowance and also receive a qualifying disability related benefit
  • Receive a carer’s premium
  • Receive a war disablement pension, war widows pension or war widower’s pension
  • Care for a child dependent under six

If a person’s partner meets any of the above criteria, they may still be able to apply.

Council Tax Support can be claimed regardless of whether an applicant owns their own home or rents it.

They can also claim no matter whether they are working or unemployed.

How to claim

Because local authorities run their own Council Tax Support schemes, anyone interested in applying must contact their local council to find out about their Council Tax Support scheme and whether they qualify.

If someone is unsure of which council they are a part of, they can enter their postcode on the Gov.uk website and be matched with their relevant council.

They will then be given the option to go to their council’s website and find out more about Council Tax Support.

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