We don't count (disregard) certain people when we look at how many are living in a property for council tax purposes.

Certain people are not counted when working out the number of adults who live in your property. You can see these in the list below. 

If we don't count all residents and they fall into the same category, for example, because they are all students, the property may be exempt from council tax. See our council tax exemptions page for more information. 

Older teenagers claiming child benefit

If you have 18 and 19 year olds living at home, who still claim child benefit, we do not count them for council tax purposes. This could be because they are still at school or have just left. 

Find out more information on our school and college leavers section below. 

Apply 

You can apply for this discount by sending us a copy of a recent child benefit entitlement letter showing the name of each child who is eligible for child benefit. 

You can scan and email the letter or send it to us using the contact details on this page. 

If you have any questions, please call us using the contact details on this page. 

Getting proof of your child benefit 

If you do not have proof of child benefit, you will need to contact the Child Benefit Office by calling 0300 200 3100.  

Apprentices

An apprentice is a person employed to learn a trade or profession.  

There is no age limit to qualify, but the apprentice must be: 

  • Employed on a low wage substantially less than the amount the apprentice will receive after getting the qualification, and no more than £195 a week 
  • On a training programme for a qualification accredited by the National Council for Vocational Qualifications 

Apply 

To apply, print off and complete the apprentice disregard application form. 

The application form is in two parts: 

  • Part 1 must be completed by the person responsible for paying the council tax 
  • Part 2 must be completed by the apprentice's employer 

Once both parts are completed, please send the form back to us using the details below.

Carers

There are two categories of carer. Each has its own criteria. 

Category A carer 

Care workers employed by a charity, local authority or state agency to provides care and support to another person. The care worker must: 

  • Have been introduced to the person by the charity or authority 
  • Work for at least 24 hours a week and be paid no more than £44 a week 
  • Live where the care is given or in premises provided, for the better performance of the work 

Apply 

To apply, print off and complete the carer disregard (category A) application form.

Please send the form back to us with proof of entitlement to the criteria above. 

Category B carer 

A carer who lives in the same home as the person receiving care and who provides an average of at least 35 hours a week care to that person. 

The carer must not be: 

  • A married or unmarried partner of the person receiving care 
  • A parent of the person receiving care, where that person is a child under the age of 18 

The person receiving care 

The person receiving care must receive one of the following benefits: 

  • Higher rate attendance allowance 
  • The highest or middle rate care part of a disability living allowance 
  • The enhanced daily living part of Personal Independence Payment (PIP) 
  • Increased rate of disablement pension 
  • Increase in constant attendance allowance 

Apply 

To apply, print off and complete the carer disregard (category B) application form

You will need to send the form back to us with proof of entitlement to the criteria above and proof that the person receiving care is entitled to 1 of the benefits listed above. 

Diplomats

A diplomat is someone with diplomatic privileges and immunity under the Diplomatic Privileges Act 1964, the Commonwealth Secretariat Act 1968 or the Republic of Ireland (Immunities and Privileges) Order 1985. 

Apply 

You can apply for this discount in writing. You need to provide: 

  • The name of the diplomat  
  • The address of the property 
  • The date the diplomat moved into the property  
  • The name of the country the diplomat represents 
  • Evidence of the person's diplomatic status (copy of passport) 

Hostels for the homeless and night shelters

The accommodation must be in self-contained units and for people of no fixed address. 

Apply 

To apply for this discount, please call us using the contact details on this page. 

International headquarters and defence organisations

This also includes dependants of a member of the international headquarters or defence organisation. 

These organisations are set out in section one of the International Headquarters and Defence Organisations Act 1964 and include such bodies as the Supreme Headquarters Allied Powers Europe (SHAPE). 

Apply 

To apply for this discount, please call or email us using the contact details on this page. 

Non-British partners and dependants of students

You will not be counted for council tax purposes, if you are: 

  • Not a British citizen 
  • The husband, wife, civil partner or dependant of a student 
  • Prevented by immigration rules from taking paid work or claiming benefits while in the UK 

Apply

To apply for this discount, you need to send us: 

  • A copy of your passport 
  • A copy of your entry visa, showing the restrictions on your stay in the UK 
  • A council tax student certificate (original, not a copy) 
  • Documentary evidence of your relationship to the student (original, not a copy)  

Nursing home or care home residents

The owner of the nursing home or care home is responsible for paying the council tax. 

We do not count residents who live at the home as their only, or main, home because they are receiving care or treatment there. 

We do count staff and other people, who are not patients, who live there as their only, or main, home. 

Apply 

To apply for this discount, please call us using the contact details on this page. 

Prisoners and other people in detention

This includes people detained in prison or hospital. 

It includes: 

  • People detained under the deportation provisions of the Immigration Act 1971 
  • People detained under the Mental Health Act 1983  

It does not include: 

  • People in police custody until they are remanded in custody by a court 
  • People detained for non-payment of council tax or a fine 

Apply 

You can apply for this discount online. 

Apply for a council tax discount for a prisoner or person in detention

Religious communities

This applies to members of religious communities where the main occupation consists of prayer, contemplation, education or the relief of suffering. 

You must have no personal income (except a pension from former employment) or capital of your own and must depend on the community for your material needs. 

Apply 

To apply for this discount, please contact us using the details on this page. 

School and college leavers

Many young people leave school or sixth form college in the summer with the intention of going on to further or higher education later in the year. 

In many cases, 18 or 19 year olds continue to claim child benefit for several weeks after leaving school. If they leave in the summer, the benefit may carry on until the beginning of September. All the time they claim child benefit, we do not count them for council tax purposes, but once the benefit stops, so does this rule. 

Once a student starts college or university, we do not count them for council tax purposes, but we cannot do this until they actually start college. 

This means there may a period when child benefit has ended, and they have not started college or university when neither rule applies. To bridge this gap, you can ask us not to count 18 and 19 year olds, who leave school or college between 1 May and 31 October, for council tax purposes, until 1 November. 

Apply 

To apply for this discount, you'll need a council tax student certificate or letter.  

You can get this from the administration office of the school or college the young person is leaving. This must confirm their attendance at that place. 

Please send the certificate or letter to us using the details on this page.

Severely mentally impaired

A person is considered to be severely mentally impaired if they have a severe impairment of intelligence and social functioning, however this is caused, which appears to be permanent. 

This can include people suffering from Alzheimer's disease, strokes and similar illnesses. 

To qualify, the person's doctor must certify the impairment. The person must also be entitled to one of the following benefits (or would have been entitled to one if he or she had not already reached state pension age): 

  • Attendance allowance 
  • Employment support allowance 
  • Severe disablement allowance 
  • The care part of the disability living allowance payable at the middle or highest rate 
  • Any rate of the daily living activity care part of Personal Independence Payment 
  • An increase in disablement pension, where constant attendance is needed 
  • Unemployability supplement 
  • Constant attendance allowance payable with disablement benefit or war disablement pension 
  • Unemployability allowance payable with war disablement pension 
  • Income support disability premium 

You can find a complete description of each of the benefits above on the application form. 

Apply 

To apply, print off and complete the severe mental impairment disregard application form. 

The form is in two parts: 

  • Part 1 - must be completed by the applicant 
  • Part 2 - must be completed by a doctor 

Please send the form and proof of the severely mentally impaired person's benefit entitlement to us using the contact details on this page. 

Students

There are 3 categories of student. You are a student if you are: 

  1. Doing a full-time course of further or higher education at a university or any other college
  2. Under the age of 20 and doing a part-time course that is not higher education
  3. Working as a foreign language assistant at a school or other educational institute 

Category 1 - full-time student 

This is a student, who is doing a full-time course of further or higher education at a university or any other college. 

By full time course, we mean one that: 

  • Lasts at least one academic or calendar year 
  • Normally requires an average of at least 21 hours a week study, tuition or work experience (whether at university or college or somewhere else) for at least 24 weeks in each academic or calendar year 

If you are doing a full-time course of further or higher education at a university or any other college in any member state of the European Union and your only or main home is in England or Wales, you may qualify as a student for council tax purposes. 

Category 2 - student under the age of 20 

This is a student who is under the age of 20 years and who is doing a course, which: 

  • Is not full-time 
  • Lasts at least three months 
  • Mainly provides tuition other than through correspondence 
  • Requires at least 12 hours a week of supervised study, exercise, experiment, project or practical work, normally carried out between 8am and 5.30pm 
  • Leads to a qualification up to A level, ONC or OND standard (that is, not higher education) 

Category 3 - foreign language assistant 

This is someone who is working as a foreign language assistant at a school or other educational institute in Great Britain and is registered with the Central Bureau for Educational Visits and Exchanges as a foreign language assistant. This is a very narrowly defined category and would not normally extend, for example, to au pairs. 

Apply 

To apply for this discount, you will need to get a council tax student certificate from the administration office of the school, college or university you are attending, as proof of your student status. 

The certificate should be on the headed stationery of the school, college or university and should give the: 

  • Name and address of the school, college or university 
  • Name of the student 
  • Student's date of birth 
  • Name of course being studied 
  • Start and end date of course 
  • Hours of study (for example, full-time, 21 hours a week) 

Please send or email us the council tax student certificate using the contact details on this page. 

Student nurses

Category 1 

Student nurses who are treated as academic students and who are on a full-time course at college or university. 

Apply  

To apply, please send us a copy of your student certificate. 

Category 2 

Student nurses who are following a course that is not full-time. Student nurses in this category may include those who are working while following the course. 

Apply 

To apply, please send us a copy of your student certificate or other proof that you are a Category 2 student nurse. 

Visiting forces

This includes any person who is a member of a visiting force from a country to which the Visiting Forces Act 1952 applies, and any non-British dependant of the member. 

The countries included in the Visiting Forces Act 1952 are: 

Antigua and Barbuda 

Germany 

Mauritius 

St Christopher and Nevis 

Australia 

Ghana 

Nauru 

St Lucia 

Bahamas 

Granada 

Netherlands 

St Vincent and Grenadines 

Bangladesh 

Greece 

New Hebrides 

Swaziland 

Barbados 

Guyana 

New Zealand 

Tanzania 

Belgium 

India 

Nigeria 

Tonga 

Belize 

Italy 

Norway 

Trinidad and Tobago 

Botswana 

Jamaica 

Pakistan 

Turkey 

Brunei 

Kenya 

Papua New Guinea 

Tuvalu 

Canada 

Kiribati 

Portugal 

Uganda 

Cyprus 

Lesotho 

Seychelles 

USA 

Denmark 

Luxembourg 

Sierra Leone 

Western Samoa 

Dominica 

Malawi 

Singapore 

Zambia 

Fiji 

Malaysia 

Solomon Islands 

Zimbabwe 

France 

Maldives 

Spain 

  

Gambia 

Malta 

Sri Lanka 

  

Apply 

To apply for this discount, please call us using the contact details on this page. 

Youth training trainees

A person is a youth training trainee if they are under 25 and taking part in training under an approved scheme, which is funded by the Learning and Skills Council for England. The training must be: 

  • Provided through arrangements under the Employment and Training Act 1973 
  • Recognised as an approved training scheme for the purposes of section 28 of the Social Security Contributions and Benefits Act 1992 

The person who is liable to pay the council tax needs to apply for this exemption.

Apply 

To apply, print off and complete the youth training trainee disregard application form. 

Please send the form with proof that the person is a youth training trainee to us. 


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