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Council Tax discounts and exemptions

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There are a variety of Council Tax discounts, reductions and exemptions available and they apply in various circumstances.

Council Tax is based on the assumption that there are at least 2 adults (people aged 18 or over) living in the property.

Council Tax Reduction

If you are on low income you may be eligible for Council Tax Reduction.

Council Tax Reduction may reduce a Council Tax bill by:

  • up to 85% where a person of working age lives in the property 
  • up to 100% where an individual or couple are over pensionable age

Council Tax Discretionary Reduction in Liability

You may be eligible for a Council Tax Discretionary Reduction to reduce your council tax liability if you are:

  • experiencing severe financial hardship or
  • have experienced a crisis or event through no fault of your own, that has made your property uninhabitable and the event is not covered by any insurance policy and you have claimed any statutory exemption or discount that is available.

Single Person Discount

If you are the only adult living in your home (aged 18 or over), we can give you a single person discount of 25%. If your circumstances change and you are no longer the only adult in your property you will need to cancel your discount with us.

A penalty of £70 will be added to your account if you fail to notify us within 21 days of any change to your household that could affect this discount i.e. a second adult moves in or a person who lives in the household turns 18.

Please complete the appropriate online form:

Apply for single person discount

Cancel your single person discount

Your property is unoccupied or is a second home

Those with job related second homes provided by an employer for reasons of employment may be eligible for a 50% discount if certain conditions apply:

  • the duties of the job make it necessary for you to live there. For example a publican who owns their own home but their contract states they must live in the pub they run
  • the accommodation is provided for the better performance of the duties of the employment and it is usual for employers to provide accommodation. For example a caretaker or church minister
  • there is a threat to the employee’s security or special security arrangements are in force and the employee resides in the dwelling as part of those arrangements

Long term empty properties

If your property is unoccupied and unfurnished you will have to pay the current 100% charge:

  • from 1 April 2020 an extra 100% will be charged on properties that are unoccupied and unfurnished for two years or more, but less than five years
  • if the property is unoccupied and unfurnished for five years or more an extra 200% will be charged, this is in addition to the current 100% charge

If you require further information please read our Council Tax Empty Properties Policy

Discounts for people who aren't counted

Certain people aren't counted when working out the number of adults who live in your home, therefore your bill will be reduced. If 2 adults live in your property and we do not count 1, you can apply for a 25% discount. You can apply for a 50% discount if all the adults are not counted.

When someone is not counted, this means that they are ‘disregarded’ for Council Tax discount purposes.

Who do we disregard?

  • 18 and 19 year olds for whom child benefit is being paid or who leave school or college between 30 April to 1 November
  • full time students, student nurses, apprentices and youth trainees
  • students or a student's non British spouse or dependants
  • patients living in hospital
  • persons who are living in nursing or care homes
  • certain care workers and carers
  • those detained in prison, hospital or by a court order (except those in prison for non-payment of Council Tax, or paying a fine
  • severely mentally impaired
  • resident of certain types of hostels
  • members of visiting forces and their families
  • members of international headquarters and defence organisations and their families
  • members of certain religious communities

If you think you are eligible for a discount please download and complete the appropriate form:

Exemptions available for 

Sometimes you may not have to pay Council Tax on a property. Most exemptions only apply when no one lives in a property, but sometimes occupied properties are exempt. Where an exemption has been granted it will be shown on your bill. 

Exemptions available for unoccupied properties

  • B - property owned by a charity that is unoccupied for less than 6 months
  • D - property left unoccupied by someone who has gone to prison
  • E - property left unoccupied by someone who has moved into a hospital or care home
  • F - a property left unoccupied because the former owner has died. The exemption lasts for up to six months after probate has been granted and providing that the property has not been passed to beneficiaries, sold or re-let before that time
  • G - property which is empty because occupation is forbidden by law
  • H - an unoccupied property waiting to be occupied by a minister of religion
  • I - property unoccupied by someone who lives elsewhere to receive personal care
  • J - property left unoccupied by someone who has moved out to care for another person
  • K - property left unoccupied by a student and was last occupied by that student
  • L - repossessed property
  • Q - property left unoccupied by a bankrupt individual
  • R - a vacant caravan pitch or boat mooring
  • T - unoccupied property forming part of another property (annex) which cannot be let separately

Occupied properties

  • M - students halls of residence
  • N - property only occupied by students
  • O - property used by the armed forces
  • P - property occupied by visiting forces
  • S - property occupied only by people under 18 years of age
  • U - property occupied only by people who are severely mentally impaired
  • V - property occupied by diplomats or members of certain international organisations
  • W - self contained annexes occupied by elderly or disabled relatives 

A 50% discount may be granted for annexes used by the owner or tenant of the main building or occupied by a member of his or her family.

If you think you are eligible for a discount please download and complete the appropriate form:

For advice or information on the other exemptions listed please call 0121 704 8100.

Disabled Reduction

You may be able to claim a reduction off your Council Tax bill if your property is the only or main home of someone who is substantially and permanently disabled. Read our disabled reduction page  for more details.

Solihull Care Leavers

With effect from 1 April 2020, where a qualifying Solihull Care Leaver is liable to pay Council Tax either as the only resident or living only with other qualifying Solihull Care Leavers, a full 100% discount will be allowed reducing the Council Tax charge to nil for the qualifying period.

A Solihull Care Leaver is defined as a person under the age of 25 who has been looked after by Solihull Council for at least 13 weeks since the age of 14 and who was looked after by Solihull Council at school-leaving age or after that date.

If you require further information please read our Council Tax Solihull Care Leavers Policy.

Your 2020/21 Council Tax bill will include the discount and so you will not have to make an application.

However, if you believe that you should be entitled to the discount and it does not appear on your bill then please contact the Council Tax Team by email council.tax@solihull.gov.uk or phone 0121 704 8100.

If there is a Council Tax balance outstanding prior to 1 April 2020, this must still be paid. If you do not already have a payment arrangement in place then please contact us using the contact details above.

Penalties

When a reduction, discount or exemption is awarded, you are required to notify us within 21 days of any change in your circumstances i.e. someone moves in or out or someone’s situation changes. Failure to contact us with this information or knowingly supplying false information may result in:

  • an overpayment
  • a fine of £70
  • a further penalty of £280 imposed for subsequent failures to provide information requested
  • criminal prosecution (through a Magistrates Court)

Council Tax account. Follow link to register

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