What is Local Council Tax Support (CTS)
On 1 April 2022, the Council introduced a new CTS scheme. The new scheme only applies to WORKING AGE applicants and uses income bands and household size to work out the level of discount.
There has been no change to the CTS Pension Age scheme.
Council Tax Support (CTS) can help pay up to 70% of your Council Tax bill if you are working-age, on a low income and have savings less than £10,000; or up to 100% if you are pension-age, on a low income and have savings less than £16,000. To be able to claim, you must be a named person liable to pay the Council Tax.
If your claim is successful, the appropriate level of discount is applied directly to your Council Tax account, which reduces the amount you have to pay.
Go to the Claiming Council Tax Support page if you want to apply.
Here is a summary of the main changes to the scheme for Working-age applicants only:-
- CTS discounts will be made at either 70%, 55%, 40% or 25% of your Council Tax charge and will not exceed £33.13 per week (Band C property)
- If you receive Income Support, Income-Related Job Seekers Allowance or Income-Related Employment Support Allowance (known as Income-Related Benefits) you will receive a CTS discount of 70% (band 1). This does not include Universal Credit.
- If you do not receive an Income-Related Benefit, we will calculate your discount based on your income and people in your household. The table below shows the Household types and Income Bands used:-
Household type and weekly Income level
Single with 1
Single with 2+
Couple with 1
Couple with 2+
Amount we will reduce
your Council Tax by:
£0 to £100
£0 to £160
£0 to £220
£0 to £140
£0 to £205
£0 to £260
70% (band 2)
55% (band 3)
40% (band 4)
25% (band 5)
More than £255
More than £280
More than £450
More than £340
More than £370
More than £430
0% (band 6)
- If you or your partner get Carers Allowance and/or the Support component of Employment Support Allowance, we will not include this as income. This will be disregarded in the same way as Disability Living Allowance/Personal Independence payments
- If you or your partner work, we will deduct up to £25 from your earnings
- If you, your partner or your child get any of the disability benefits below, we will deduct £79.30 from your total income:
Disability living allowance or Personal independence payment
Support component of Employment Support Allowance
Universal Credit 'Limited Capability for Work' element (at the higher rate)
- Non-dependant deductions will no longer be applied. This means if you have an adult living with you (who is not your partner), we will not reduce the level of support you are entitled to receive, regardless of how much this person earns or the amount of benefits they claim
If you hold capital under £10,000 this will be fully disregarded and will not affect the level of support you can receive; we will not make any deduction from your LCTS award. This means if you and your partner if you have one, holds £10,000 or more in capital, you will not be eligible for LCTS
For people of pension age, the rules for the scheme are set out by the Government, not by the local authority.
As the scheme is means-tested, the amount a person receive depends on their income, plus the size and needs of the household.
You may be able to claim CTS if you:
- live in the property as your main home - the property where you pay Council Tax is your main home
- are liable to pay Council Tax - the person named on the demand
- have income below a certain amount - if you get Pension Credit, we will use the figures as calculated by The Pension Service
- have capital below a certain amount - capital includes savings and some other types of property. If you're part of a couple, the capital of both of you is taken into account. Your capital must be £16,000 or less, unless you're entitled to the guarantee credit part of Pension Credit
- meet the residence rules - be in Great Britain with the correct rights to be here
You must report relevant changes about your household size or household income as this may alter the income band and level of discount you are entitled to. We don't need to know about all changes, so here are some examples of changes that should be reported:-
- Changes to your household income that will result in a different income band taking effect; e.g. income increases or decreases
- Changes to your household income that may affect how your total income is calculated; such as you or your partner being awarded a disability benefit, Carer's Allowance, or starting work, etc.
- Household changes, such as a partner moving in or out, a new baby being born, or a child going to live somewhere else
- You don't need to tell us if other adults in your household leave
- Your household capital increases to £10,000 or more
- You or your partner are going to be temporarily absent from your property for more than 4 weeks
- You change address
You must tell us about all changes within 21 days of the change happening. If you do not tell us within 21 days we may only be able to amend your claim from the date that you tell us about the change.
If you do not tell us about changes in your circumstances which are later identified, you may be subject to an Administration Penalty (fine) or prosecution.
All changes should be reported using our online 'Change of Circumstances' form, which also allows you to attach pictures or scanned documents as evidence for your change. This form can be completed on a smart phone, tablet or computer. Additional evidence can be provided separately using the Evidence Attachment Form.
If you are struggling with paying your Council Tax Bill, you may be able to get a Discretionary payment (or exceptional hardship payment) to help meet more of your Council Tax bill for a short period. Please read our and visit the Discretionary payment pages HERE to apply.
If you would like further information about CTS, please contact the Benefit Section on 02392 545325 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.