West Berkshire Council

Council Tax Reduction

You'll get money off your Council Tax bill if you qualify for Council Tax Reduction

The Council Tax Reduction Scheme for West Berkshire changed on 1 April 2017. Further changes are not being made to the scheme for 2018/19. 

You can read about the most recent changes in our pdf icon Council Tax Reduction Scheme explanatory leaflet [2Mb]. These changes are being carried forward into the 2018/19 Council Tax Reduction (CTR) Scheme, which only differs from the 2017/18 scheme by mirroring Housing Benefit annual uprating of allowances and premiums used in the calculation of entitlement.

Following consultation, changes to the CTR Scheme were agreed which applied from 1 April 2017 for working age claimants not falling within a protected group (see below for more information on protected groups).

The following scheme amendments continue into 2018/19:

  • From 1 April 2017 the capital limit for people of working age seeking to claim CTR reduced from £16,000 to £6,000, unless a claimant or partner qualify for an income-related benefit (income based Job Seekers Allowance, Income Related Employment and Support Allowance, Income Support)

  • The maximum Council Tax liability eligible for CTR cannot exceed the amount for a Band C property

  • If neither claimant or partner are receiving an income related benefit, the percentage of excess income (taper) used in the calculation increased to 30% from 20% - the excess income is the difference between weekly income and applicable amounts, of which a claimant is required to contribute a percentage towards Council Tax

  • The minimum weekly CTR award increased to £10 per week from £3 per week

100% of a Council Tax bill can only be considered for reduction in some circumstances, for instance, if you or your partner are of pensionable age or fall into a protected group. This means that Council Tax Reduction will be deducted from your full Council Tax liability if you or your partner:

  • are of State Pension age and not receiving a working age benefit
  • are in receipt of Disability Living Allowance or Personal Independence Payment
  • are in receipt of Attendance Allowance
  • are in receipt of a War Pension
  • are in receipt of a disability element of Working Tax Credit
  • are in receipt of Severe Disablement Allowance
  • are in receipt of Incapacity Benefit at the long term rate or, if they are terminally ill, the short term higher rate
  • are in receipt of Employment and Support Allowance (income or contribution based)
  • are responsible for a child that lives with you and receives Disability Living Allowance

Owners of empty homes in West Berkshire have to pay Council Tax for those properties.

Making a claim

You can apply for Council Tax Reduction whether you own your home, rent, are unemployed or working.

To make a claim for Housing Benefit and/or Council Tax Reduction please print and complete pdf icon the claim form [1Mb] and return it to us. If you are unable to print the form, you can request one to be sent to you by telephoning Customer Services.

You can see full details of the pdf icon scheme for 2018/19 [1001kb].

Keep us informed

If you are already receiving Housing Benefit and/or Council Tax Reduction and your circumstances have changed, please report the change(s) using our doc icon change of circumstances form [51kb]. This may affect how much Council Tax you have to pay.

We'll send you a revised Council Tax bill showing any changes.

Disagreements and appeals

If you disagree with our decision regarding your entitlement to Council Tax Reduction you can ask us to look at it again.

You should contact us promptly, in writing (by letter), telling us what you think is wrong and why.

Exceptional Hardship Fund

If you have applied for Council Tax Reduction but you believe that you (or a member of your family) will suffer exceptional hardship if you do not receive further assistance, a pdf icon Council Tax Reduction Scheme Exceptional Hardship Claim [360kb] should be completed and returned to the Benefits Team.

Who To Contact

West Berkshire Council's Benefits Team

01635 519258