Whilst waiting for a decision on your Council Tax Discretionary Reduction Scheme application:

  • continue to make payments to your council tax account
  • tell us about any changes of circumstance
  • tell us about any other benefit or reduction awarded, which was not detailed on your application

What we consider

We will consider your circumstances, as well as those of your partner and other members of the household when making a decision, including:

  • personal circumstances
  • income and expenditure
  • all financial circumstances, such as any savings or capital which could be used to pay the council tax liability
  • for those with joint liability, the circumstances and finances of all liable parties and their households
  • whether your expenditure includes avoidable expenses which may be considered luxuries or lifestyle choices, or that could be reduced to enable you to pay your council tax
  • whether you could make payments in any way other than by receiving a discretionary award. This could be by statutory discount (such as a Single Occupancy Discount), an alternative payment arrangement, or by pursuing other financial assistance

Reduction under part 2 of the Scheme

We will also consider eligibility for a class reduction under part 2 of the Council Tax Discretionary Reduction Scheme.

Part 2 of the Scheme relates to cases where a number of householders meet common criteria, for example where a specific natural disaster such as flooding has impacted a number of properties.

We will award these reductions on a proactive basis without the need for an application, when it is appropriate to do so. However, this does not prevent you from applying for a reduction under part 2 of the scheme.

Notification of our decision

The amount of reduction and how long the award is made for is at our discretion. When we have made a decision on your application we will send you:

  • a decision letter confirming whether or not an award has been made
  • a full statement outlining the reasons for the decision
  • details of what factors have been taken into account when making the decision
  • a new council tax bill

Disagreeing with a decision

If you disagree with our decision you can ask us to reconsider:

  • you must do this in writing within 1 month of our decision letter
  • this can be by letter or email to the Benefits Team
  • your request must state the reasons why you disagree with our decision

Your re-application will be considered by a senior manager and their decision is final. You will be notified in writing of the outcome and the reasons for the second decision.

If you still wish to dispute the decision you can appeal directly to the Valuation Tribunal for England.

The Valuation Tribunal for England is an independent body which administers council tax and business rates disputes between taxpayers and local authorities.

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