Policy

Giving local authorities more control over how they spend public money in their area

Supporting detail:

Localising Council Tax support

We’re introducing new rules which will allow councils in England to design their own Council Tax support schemes. The Local Government Finance Act which gained Royal assent in October 2012, allows local councils in England to design their own schemes from April 2013.

The new law protects vulnerable pensioners and the changes should provide incentives for people to find and stay in work.

The Department for Communities and Local Government has provided information and guidance to support local authorities to develop their own schemes (see below).

Council Tax reduction schemes regulations

The Council Tax Reduction Schemes (Prescribed Requirements) (England) Regulations 2012 (SI 2012/2885) and The Council Tax Reduction Schemes (Default Scheme) (England) Regulations 2012 (SI 2012/2886) were made on 16 November 2012, and laid before Parliament on 22 and 23 of November 2012 respectively.

This instrument, the Council Tax Reduction Schemes (Prescribed Requirements and Default Scheme) (England) (Amendment) Regulations 2012 (SI 2012:3085) has now been laid before Parliament.

This follows through on the government’s stated intention to increase some of the allowances in the Prescribed Requirements and Default Scheme in line with the Department for Work and Pensions’ up-rating of Housing Benefit following the Autumn Statement.

The Prescribed Requirements regulations prescribe requirements for all local Council Tax reduction schemes and came into force on 27 November 2012.

Please note for Prescribed Requirements:

  • Schedules 1 to 6 apply to pensioners (as defined) only
  • Schedules 7 to 8 apply to all applicants (ie working age and pensioners)

The differences between the 7 September version and 22 November version of these regulations are shown in this ‘track-changes’ document:

Differences between The Council Tax Reduction Schemes (Prescribed Requirements) (England) Regulations 2012 - 7 September 2012 compared to 22 November 2012

This file may not be suitable for users of assistive technology. Request a different format.

If you use assistive technology and need a version of this document in a more accessible format please email alternativeformats@communities.gsi.gov.uk quoting your address, telephone number along with the title of the publication ("Differences between The Council Tax Reduction Schemes (Prescribed Requirements) (England) Regulations 2012 - 7 September 2012 compared to 22 November 2012").

The Default Scheme Regulations, which prescribe the default Council Tax reduction scheme which will apply to any council which has not made its on scheme on or before 31 January 2013, comes into force on 18 December 2012.

The Default Scheme Regulations contain provisions about applicants in receipt of an award of universal credit, and we will be publishing a further guidance note on this approach, with worked examples.

The differences between the 7 September version and 22 November version of these regulations are shown in this ‘track-changes’ document:

Differences between The Council Tax Reduction Schemes (Default Scheme) (England) Regulations 2012 - 7 September 2012 compared to 22 November 2012

This file may not be suitable for users of assistive technology. Request a different format.

If you use assistive technology and need a version of this document in a more accessible format please email alternativeformats@communities.gsi.gov.uk quoting your address, telephone number along with the title of the publication ("Differences between The Council Tax Reduction Schemes (Default Scheme) (England) Regulations 2012 - 7 September 2012 compared to 22 November 2012").

Publications

We have run the following consultations:

For further information see Localising Council Tax support publications.

If you have any queries email LCTS-reform@communities.gsi.gov.uk

Localising Council Tax support: Q&A

This file may not be suitable for users of assistive technology. Request a different format.

If you use assistive technology and need a version of this document in a more accessible format please email alternativeformats@communities.gsi.gov.uk quoting your address, telephone number along with the title of the publication ("Localising Council Tax support: Q&A").

Design tool: Council Tax support calculator v2.2 for Excel 2003

This file may not be suitable for users of assistive technology. Request a different format.

If you use assistive technology and need a version of this document in a more accessible format please email alternativeformats@communities.gsi.gov.uk quoting your address, telephone number along with the title of the publication ("Design tool: Council Tax support calculator v2.2 for Excel 2003").

Council Tax support calculator: Q&A

This file may not be suitable for users of assistive technology. Request a different format.

If you use assistive technology and need a version of this document in a more accessible format please email alternativeformats@communities.gsi.gov.uk quoting your address, telephone number along with the title of the publication ("Council Tax support calculator: Q&A").

Actual allocations of the transition grant for Council Tax reduction schemes can be found on the localising support for Council Tax: transitional grant scheme page.

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