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Council tax support

Additional reduction for Council Tax Support recipients

Residents in receipt of Council Tax Support from 1 April 2020 onwards will automatically get up to £150 off their council tax bill as part of the latest measures to relieve financial pressure.

This is aimed at working age families who already qualify for council tax reduction but still have to pay some council tax.

Using the £1.33 million Council Tax Hardship Fund which was provided to us by the government in response to COVID-19, we have automatically applied the discount and are sending revised bills week from 3 August 2020.

If you are working-age and make a new claim for Council Tax Support in 2020/21 we will automatically award a hardship payment of up to £150 if you are entitled to it. There is no need to make a separate hardship payment claim.

If your Council Tax account is now in credit and you:

  • pay by Direct Debit you will be refunded automatically
  • do not pay by Direct Debit please email counciltax@slough.gov.uk with the subject headed ‘Council Tax Refund’ with your bank details to request the refund. Or you can find a refund form in the Refund section of our Change of circumstances page.

In 2013 Council Tax Benefit (CTB) changed to Council Tax Support (CTS). In Slough there were no changes to the way you receive your payment, this will still be put onto your Council Tax account and the bill you receive will show the support you have received.

Council Tax Support can help pay towards some, of your Council Tax bill if you are on a low income, even if you own your own home. You can apply for Council Tax Support whether you own your home, rent, are unemployed or working.

Each year Cabinet are legally obliged to approve the Council Tax Support Scheme for working age households even if there are no changes to it. The scheme however has not been changed since 2016.

In January 2020 Slough Borough Council agreed to introduce an income-banded Council Tax Support Scheme for working age people for 2020/21 to replace the complex means test. In order to do this we needed to consult with all residents of the borough and this consultation was carried out between 7 October and 17 November 2019.

Our consultation results confirmed overall agreement with the changes we proposed to the Council Tax Support Scheme. The council has changed the scheme to make it simpler. Income bands will for example allow people to vary their hours at work without losing support. The new scheme will also give applicants more certainty about how much council tax they need to pay, and will result in fewer council tax bills if their income fluctuates within the same band.

Our new scheme considers whether working age people should pay in the region of 20% to 100% of their Council Tax depending on their income and household make up.

For more information on the new scheme please see Calculating your benefit.

We are unable to change the way in which we award Council Tax Support to pension-aged people, as the rules are set by central Government.

Please note that CTS cannot help with water charges. Also it cannot help you pay a mortgage: you will need to contact the Department for Work and Pensions if you need help with this.

If you need any further information or wish to discuss your specific circumstances, please contact the benefits helpline on 01753 475111 or visit MyCouncil.

Making a claim

You can get more information about Housing Benefit and Council Tax Support by visiting the GOV.UK website. If you make a claim for Pension Credit, Universal Credit, Income Support, Jobseeker's Allowance or Employment and Support Allowance you will be invited to also claim Housing Benefit and/or Council Tax Support.

Online claim form

To make a claim for Housing benefit and/or Council Tax Support you can now apply online.

Keep us informed

If you already receive Housing Benefit and/or Council Tax Support and your circumstances have changed, please complete the change of circumstances form. This may affect how much Council Tax you have to pay.

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

You need to tell us of any changes within one month of the change happening so you don’t lose out on any extra benefit you may be entitled to.

If you have been overpaid support then this will be debited to your Council Tax account and we will send you a revised bill showing your new instalments. If you are entitled to more money this will be credited to your Council Tax account and a revised bill send showing the lower instalments.

You can tell us online about a change in circumstances or download and complete a form below, then scan and email it to benefits@slough.gov.uk or return it to PO Box 1032 Slough SL1 3YT.

A change in circumstances can be relating to you, your partner or anyone else living in your household and can be, for example:

Income

If you or your partner’s income goes up or down or if the income of any other person in your household goes up or down, for example:

  • Income Support.
  • Job Seekers Allowance.
  • State Retirement Pensions.
  • Works/Occupational Pensions.
  • Earnings.
  • Working Tax Credit/Child Tax Credit.
  • Child Benefit.
  • Savings or Capital.
  • Rent from sub-tenants or lodgers.
  • Maintenance payments.
  • Any other state Benefits.

Accommodation details

  • If you move to a new home OR
  • if you change rooms.

Household details

  • If a child is born.
  • If any of your children leave school or leave home.
  • If you stop receiving Child Benefit for any of your children.
  • If any of your other circumstances change.
  • If anyone moves into or out of your home, including lodgers and subtenants.
  • If you or anyone living with you starts work.
  • If you or anyone living with you becomes a student, goes on a government training scheme, goes in hospital or a nursing home, goes into prison or changes or leaves a job.
  • If you receive any decision from the Home Office.
  • If you or your partner are going to be away from home for more than a month.

If you are not sure whether we need to know about a specific change then please contact us and we will be happy to advise you.

Council Tax Hardship

The Council Tax Hardship scheme has been developed to support residents who are suffering hardship and need assistance for a specified period of time to pay their Council Tax. The scheme will only be used for the payment of Council Tax and all payments will be credited to the Council Tax account, no payments will be paid direct to the customer.  Please complete the form and email it to benefits@slough.gov.uk or return it to PO Box 1032 Slough SL1 3YT.

Overpayment/Change of Circumstances

If you feel that there has been an overpayment of benefit, an underpayment, or if your circumstances have changed you must notify the benefits section immediately.

You can tell us online about a change in your circumstances.

Or download a form below, and once completed, scan it and email it to benefits@slough.gov.uk or return it to PO Box 1032 Slough SL1 3YT.

Evidence and proofs you need to provide

These are the same as for Housing Benefit - you can view them here Housing Benefit proofs.

Council Tax Support appeals

If you disagree with a decision that we have made regarding CTS, you will need to write to us and explain why you think the decision is wrong. This should be done as quickly as possible after we have made our decision. We will look at our decision again and we may amend it in your favour. Once we have considered an appeal you will be notified of the decision in writing together with the reasons for the decision.

However, if you do not agree with the decision and wish to appeal further you must at this stage write directly to:

Valuation Tribunal,
Second Floor,
Black Lion House,
45 Whitechapel Road,
London E1 1DU
Email: vtwhitechapel@vts.gsi.gov.uk
Tel: 0300 123 2035

Contact us

Online
Contact Benefits form

Telephone
01753 475111
Monday 9am-5pm
Tuesday 9am-5pm
Wednesday 10am-5pm
Thursday 9am-5pm
Friday 9am-4.45pm
Saturday Closed
Sunday Closed

In person
Community Hubs

By email
If you contact the team via email: benefits@slough.gov.uk please include your account reference number in the subject line.