Reduced Services

Coronavirus (COVID-19) Update

In line with social distancing advice and to protect residents and staff the Council has taken the decision to close the Council offices to the public until further notice.

Whilst the offices are closed to visitors, you are still able to access services and information from this website 24/7.

Information and advice on coronavirus (COVID-19) and how to access Council Services during this period can be found on our Coronavirus information page

You are invited to view and contribute to the The Mayor's Covid Record of Reflection

Council Tax Support

What is Council Tax Support ?

Local Council Tax Support is a discount for Council Tax. The level of discount is based on the income of the household. Currently the maximum discount is 70% of Council Tax for working age households and up to 100% for pensioners.

Who can claim Council Tax Support?

Anyone who has to pay Council Tax can apply. However Council Tax Support is there to help people on low income to pay their Council Tax bill. It is assessed by looking at your:

  • household
  • any other adults living with you
  • personal circumstances
  • income

You will not be entitled to Council Tax Support if:

  • you have savings of over £6,000 (unless you are in receipt of Guaranteed Pension Credit)

 

How do you work out my Council Tax Support?

Once the above has been looked at it will be decided how much, if any, your Council Tax bill will be reduced by. If you are of working age you will pay at least 30% of your Council Tax bill. If you are entitled to Council Tax Support this figure will show as a deduction on your Council Tax bill.

Find out more from our page on How your benefit is calculated. You can find out if you may be entitled by using our Calculator.

 

How to claim

Online

You can complete the Online Claim Form   

By Phone

If you want help to make a claim call our First Contact team on 01268 882200.

Need to send us evidence for your claim?

To supply evidence to support your claim is simple. All you need to do is photograph or scan your documents; save them on your smart phone, tablet or computer, and then upload your photograph or documents via our website. https://www.castlepoint.gov.uk/upload-evidence

 

Advice and Support

Please see the advice and support timetable Advice & Support Timetable[pdf] 311KB  showing what is available across the borough for free.

 

How long will it take to process my application?

Your application will be processed as soon as possible. You can help to speed up your application by making sure you supply all the right information. To find out what you will need to supply see our page on  Information and evidence for Housing and Council Tax Support.

I’ve only just found out I am eligible. Can I claim for previous months?

No, Council Tax Support cannot be backdated. See the Backdated benefit page for more information.

 

What if I disagree with the way you work out my Council Tax Support?

After your claim has been assessed you will receive a letter explaining the information we have used to work out the amount of Council Tax Support. If you think the information used is incorrect you can speak to one of our First Contact team by telephoning 01268 882210, or you can email benefits.

 

Benefit appeals

You can appeal to us against the amount of Council Tax you have to pay for either of the reasons below

  • You think that, under the rules of the local council tax reduction scheme, the council should have given you a reduction on the council tax you have to pay.
  • You think the amount of reduction the council have given you under the local council tax reduction scheme is not correct.

See the Benefit appeals page for more information.

 

What if there is a change in my circumstances?

If you have any changes to your income or savings, members within the household or move address you must inform us promptly of this so that your claim can be updated and the correct Council Tax Support amount awarded.

See the Change in circumstances page for more information.

 

I can’t afford to pay, what can I do?

You must contact us straight away. There are other agencies that may be able to help with your financial situation, please see the Welfare and Debt - Information and Advice page.

 

Are other discounts and exemptions affected?

Other discounts and exemptions are not affected by this scheme. See the full list of exemptions and discounts on our Council Tax page.

 

Where can I go for help and advice?

If you need any help or advice you can speak to one of our First Contact team by telephoning 01268 882210 or see the welfare & debt page.

For more details on the key elements of the scheme and the council decision, consultation, equality impact assessment see the Local Council Tax support page.