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Luton Borough Council

Council Tax rebate 2022

 

As part of the government’s initiative to help households with rising energy costs, they've announced a £150 Council Tax rebate for householders in bands A to D.

Applications for the Council Tax Energy Rebate (bands A to D £150 rebate) closed on 1 July 2022.

If you are entitled to the rebate and have not received this please complete the Energy Rebate Enquiry form at the bottom of this page to contact us.

Applications for the Discretionary Council Tax Energy Rebate closed on 1 October 2022.

Please note: we will continue to release payments for the Discretionary Council Tax Energy Rebate until November 2022 when the scheme ends.

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Who can get this £150 rebate?

Householders in bands A to D will qualify for this rebate. If you don’t know which band your property is in, you can find it on your latest Council Tax bill. View your bill online or see our Council Tax bands page to check.

Please note: second homes or empty properties will not benefit from the council tax rebate.

Who is eligible

You must be the responsible person on 1 April 2022 and meet all of the following criteria:

  • be in Council Tax Bands A to D, this includes property that is valued in band E but has an alternative valuation band of band D, because of the disabled band reduction scheme
  • be your sole or main residence (this means you should be living in the property as your sole or main residence)
  • be a chargeable dwelling, or in exemption classes N, S, U or W (see below)
  • be the person who is liable to pay the council tax (or would be were the property not exempt) who is not a local authority, a corporate body or other body such as a housing association, the government or governmental body

Exemption classes Description

N

Properties occupied solely by students, school or college leavers or non-British spouses of students may be eligible for an exemption.
S Properties occupied only by a person or persons aged under 18
U Properties occupied solely by persons who are severely mentally impaired
W Annexes or self-contained parts of a property which are occupied by dependant relatives of the occupants of the main property

Who is not eligible

The following properties are not eligible:

  • a property that has no permanent resident and is someone’s second home will not be eligible
  • an unoccupied property (for the purposes of calculating council tax) will not be eligible
  • a local authority, a corporate body or other body such as a housing association, the government or governmental body who is liable to pay the council tax
  • you are registered for council tax as the landlord of a house of multiple occupation (HMO)

Please note: this grant payment is intended to support all household members. If it is found that you are not the liable person and the rebate has been paid in error the council will seek to recover this money.

When will I get the £150?

The £150 will be made as a one-off payment. People who pay their Council Tax by Direct Debit should have this paid directly into their bank account automatically. Payments will start to made from May 2022.

When you receive your payment, please check the eligibility criteria, and let us know if, for whatever reason, you think you may have been paid by mistake. You can complete the online Council Tax Rebate Enquiry form at the bottom of this page to inform us about any errors.

We wrote to all non-direct debit payers at the beginning of May to invite you to complete the application form.

If you did not submit a form by 1 July 2022, or we were unable to verify your bank details during our pre-payment checking process, we will credit to £150 rebate grant directly to your Council Tax account around the end of July 2022.

If you don’t pay your council tax by direct debit

If you do not submit a form by 11:59pm on 1 July 2022, or we are unable to verify your bank details during our pre-payment checking process, we will credit the £150 rebate grant directly to your Council Tax account around the end of July 2022.

If you would prefer to have your £150 rebate credited to your council tax account you do not need to complete a form as this will happen automatically around the end of July 2022 for anyone who has not completed a claim form by 1 July 2022.

If you chose to complete a claim form and provide your bank details then the payments are subject to mandatory pre-payment checks designed to reduce the risk of fraud. If no issues are highlighted during these checks then the process from claim to payment should take between 10 to 14 working days.

What happens if someone else pays my council tax for me?

If your Council Tax is paid by Direct Debit but the bank account details belong to someone else, for example a family member or where the direct debit details we hold do not match the name on the Council Tax account you should complete the application form at the bottom of this page.

Applications will be open until 1 July 2022.

If you have not applied by this date or if we’re unable to verify your details following our pre-payment checks the Council Tax rebate will be credited to your council tax account by the end of July 2022.

Joint and severally liable cases

One £150 payment will be made per eligible household (defined as a person or group of people living in a property that attracts a separate council tax bill).

If your household is eligible and you usually pay your council tax by direct debit, payment will be made to the direct debit bank account. The bank account name must match one of the residents on the council tax bill.

If your household is eligible and you do not pay your council tax by direct debit or where the bank account name does not match one of the residents on the council tax bill, you will be invited make an application to nominate a method to receive payment on behalf of the household.

The council will not be able to get involved in disputes over who should receive the payment.

What if my household isn’t eligible?

A separate discretionary scheme will be available for people who are not eligible for the £150 payment and people on low incomes with homes in Council Tax bands E to H. Details of this scheme will be published once available.

Applied more than 14 days ago and I haven’t received a payment?

To ensure payments are made correctly, the government requires us to make additional checks on these applications to ensure the money reaches the correct destination. 

As part of the application process we carry out a number of mandatory pre-payment checks before releasing the payment.  If you submitted your application more than 14 days ago and you have not received your payment yet this may be due to failing these pre-payment checks.

If we are unable to verify your details during the application process the energy rebate payment will be credited directly to your council tax account instead.  We aim to credit council tax accounts as soon as possible and at the latest by the end of July 2022.

We use the Cabinet Office Spotlight database to complete these pre-payment checks and we are not informed with the reason why an application has failed the required checks so we are unable to provide further information about this.

If you think your council tax band is incorrect you will need to request a review of your band through the Valuation Office Agency (VOA), you will need to explain why you believe your band is incorrect and provide supporting evidence.

For more information on when the VOA will undertake a band review and the evidence that you need to provide can be found on the UK Government's Challenging your Council Tax band webpage.

No, you must continue to pay your Council Tax bill by the amounts and on the dates shown on your bill. If you're struggling to pay, please see What happens if I don’t pay my Council Tax? for help and advice.

Yes, you can. Instead of the rebate being taken by your bank to pay off an unarranged overdraft you may have, you can tell them how you would prefer the money to be used. This might be to pay for phone or energy bills, for example.

All you have to do is send them a letter telling them that the rebate for £150 will be credited to your account, and how you would like it to be spent by detailing upcoming transactions.

This process is called 'First Right of Appropriation'.

Download a sample 'First Right of Appropriation' letter from the National Debtline website.

Where the council has reason to believe that the information we hold about the valuation list, liable taxpayer(s) or residents’ circumstances as at the 1 April 2022 is inaccurate, we are within our rights to withhold the payment and take reasonable steps to determine the correct information.

Where records relating to the liable taxpayer(s) or residents’ circumstances as at the 1 April 2022 are retrospectively updated, the council will clawback payments.

More information about the £150 Council Tax rebate, as well as other ways the government is helping with rising energy costs, is available on the UK Government's:

Information leaflet - £150 government Council Tax rebate

Do not provide your bank details to anyone calling you claiming to be from Luton Council and asking for your bank details. We will not be calling you to ask for these details. We will update the details on how to apply here.

If you think you may have been the victim of fraud or cybercrime and incurred a financial loss or have been hacked as a result of responding to a phishing message, you should report this www.ncsc.gov.uk.

Who is eligible

The government has stated that the Council will be responsible for designing its local discretionary energy rebate scheme, however, in developing and implementing the scheme it should provide support to other energy bill payers who are not eligible under the terms of the core scheme.

This discretionary scheme will provide a grant of £150 to eligible households in properties with a Council Tax Band of E to H where either:

  1. they are in receipt of Council Tax Reduction at that property on 1 April 2022;
  2. they are in receipt of a disabled band reduction on 1 April 2022 and a person with disabilities lives in the property, excluding registered care and nursing homes;
  3. where there is a Council Tax disregard in place on 1 April 2022 as one or more of the residents is a carer or is severely mentally impaired, excluding registered care and nursing homes; or
  4. where there is an exemption in place on 1 April 2022 as all the residents are severely mentally impaired, excluding registered care and nursing homes.

The remaining funds will be used to create a hardship fund to provide payments to households in all bands who are in receipt of Council Tax reduction on 1 April 2022.

Please note: this grant payment is intended to support all household members. If it is found that you are not the liable person and the rebate has been paid in error the council will seek to recover this money.

To apply for the discretionary rebate please complete the application form at the bottom of this page.

Who is not eligible

The following properties are not eligible:

  • households not in receipt of Council Tax Reduction on 1 April 2022
  • a property that has no permanent resident and is someone’s second home will not be eligible
  • Band E-H properties where the household is not in receipt of a Disabled band reduction on 1 April 2022 
  • Band E-H properties where there is not a disregard or exemption on 1 April 2022 for a resident who is severely mentally impaired
  • Band E-H properties where there is not a disregard on 1 April 2022 for a resident who is a carer
  • an unoccupied property (for the purposes of calculating council tax) will not be eligible
  • a local authority, a corporate body or other body such as a housing association, the government or governmental body who is liable to pay the council tax
  • registered care and nursing homes
  • you are registered for council tax as the landlord of a house of multiple occupation (HMO)

Any households experiencing financial hardship due to rising energy costs which have been unable to access funding through the Council Tax Rebate scheme, can apply for assistance through our Council Tax Exceptional Hardship Scheme. Examples of cases that may be eligible for this will be:

  • households in bands A to D who become liable for Council Tax after 1 April 2022 and before 30 June 2022 and who were not eligible for the Council Tax Rebate Scheme on 1 April 2022; and
  • households in band E to H in receipt of means tested and/or disability based benefits but are not eligible for Council Tax Reduction.

The Council will assess any exceptional hardship claims in accordance with our policy and by way of application. More information and details on how to apply are shown on the Council Tax Exceptional Hardship page.

When will I get the payment?

The discretionary energy rebate will be made as a one-off payment. People who pay their Council Tax by direct debit should have this paid directly into their bank account automatically. Payments will start from August 2022.

If you don’t already pay by direct debit, you can sign up to pay your Council Tax by direct debit online.

Sign up to pay your Council Tax by direct debit

For residents who don’t pay their Council Tax by direct debit or have no Council Tax to pay, you can apply online using the form at the bottom of this page before the 1 October 2022.

If you would prefer to have your discretionary rebate credited to your council tax account you do not need to complete a form as this will happen automatically around the end of October 2022 for anyone who has not completed a claim form by 1 October 2022.

Important please read: If you complete a claim form and provide your bank details then the payments are subject to mandatory pre-payment checks designed to reduce the risk of fraud. If no issues are highlighted during these checks then the payment will be released to your bank account. Payments will start to be made from August 2022 and before the end of October 2022.

If you do not submit a form by 11:59pm on 1 October 2022, or we are unable to verify your bank details during our pre-payment checking process, we will credit the rebate grant directly to your Council Tax account around the end of October 2022.

Application – digital support

If you do not have access to the internet you can use a PC at your local library free of charge for 30 minutes.

If you are unable to access the online form, and do not have anyone to help you, please call our dedicated helpline on 01582 548955 and one of their advisors will complete it with you.

I have applied online but I haven’t received a payment?

To ensure payments are made correctly, the government requires us to make additional checks on these applications to ensure the money reaches the correct destination.

As part of the application process we carry out a number of mandatory pre-payment checks before releasing the payment. If you submitted your application and you have not received your payment yet this may be due to failing these pre-payment checks.

If we are unable to verify your details during the application process the energy rebate payment will be credited directly to your Council Tax account instead. We aim to credit Council Tax accounts with the discretionary rebate as soon as possible and at the latest by the end of October 2022.

We use the Cabinet Office Spotlight database to complete these pre-payment checks and we are not informed with the reason why an application has failed the required checks so we are unable to provide further information about this.

Applications for the Discretionary Energy Rebate are now open

Please read the eligibility criteria above before applying for the discretionary payment. Only eligible households will be able to submit an application.

If you have any queries about the energy rebate scheme, please contact us using the Council Tax rebate enquiry form.

Please note: this enquiry form is not the application for the discretionary energy rebate scheme. To make a claim for the discretionary energy rebate, please complete the application form above.

Council Tax rebate enquiry form

 

© 2022 Luton Council, Town Hall, Luton LU1 2BQ