2. Council Tax Support changes from April 2017
Outcome of consultation
Over the summer of 2016 we consulted existing Council Tax Support (CTS) customers, Council Tax payers and stakeholders about the 8 proposals to change the working-age CTS scheme.
You can see the results from the completed questionnaires.
The proposals were approved at Full Council on Wednesday 21 December 2016.
What are the changes?
To bring the Council Tax Reduction Scheme in line with the national changes:
- Removing the Family Premium for all new working age applicants
- Reducing backdating for new claims to 1 month
- Introducing a Minimum Income Floor (MIF) for the self-employed after a 12 month start up period.
For all working-age customers and partners who are self-employed, the MIF is an assumed level of earnings based on what we would expect an employed person to receive in similar circumstances. It’s calculated on 35 hours work per week at National Living Wage levels (less Tax and National
Insurance). From 1st April 2017 this is £241.89 per week.
For new businesses the MIF will not apply during a 12 month start up period.
- Reducing the period a person can be absent from Great Britain and still receive Council Tax Reduction to 4 weeks
- To remove the work related activity component in the calculation of our scheme for new Employment and Support Allowance applicants
- To limit the number of dependant children within the calculation of Council Tax Reduction to a maximum of 2
- Remove entitlement to the Severe Disability Premium where another person is paid Universal Credit (Carers Element) to look after them
- To remove the additional earnings disregard and apply the standard disregards regardless of hours worked to those applicants also claiming Universal Credit.
If you are affected by the changes
As this is a change to our policy you do not have a right to appeal against it.
If you do not think you will be able to pay your Council Tax instalments please contact us now as we can offer:
- an instalment plan which is tailored to you
- help with budgeting and managing your money with an independent money advisor
- a benefit check, to make sure you are getting all of the benefits you are entitled to.
- advice on claiming from our Exceptional Hardship Fund (EHF)