Council tax and Severe Mental Impairment .
Council Tax Support and Discounts
You may be entitled to help with these payments if you have to pay council tax and are on a low income or claim benefits. Your local authority runs these schemes. There are 3 schemes for reducing council tax. You can get help from the 3 schemes if you are eligible.
The Council Tax Reduction Scheme
The Discount Scheme
The Disability Reduction Scheme
The local authority can decide you do not need to pay council tax, this is called exemption.
Exemption due to severe mental impairment
The council tax rules say that a person is exempt from council tax if they have a ‘severe mental impairment’. It says that "a person is severely mentally impaired if they have a severe impairment of intelligence and social functioning which appears to be permanent".
To get this you need a doctor to sign a medical certificate that says you are severely mentally impaired and get one of the following benefits:
DLA with the middle or highest rate care component
Personal Independence Payment Daily Living Component (standard or enhanced rate)
Severe Disablement Allowance
Employment and Support Allowance
Income Support or Jobseekers Allowance with a disability premium
Working Tax Credit with the disability element
Council tax reduction scheme.
The council tax reduction scheme replaced the national Council Tax Benefit on 1st April 2013. Council tax support is managed by your local authority through their local scheme. The reduction may cover some, or all, of your council tax bill. This will depend on your household income. How much help you can get with your council tax will depend on your local scheme. But, the government has reduced the money available to local authorities by 10%. This may mean that many working age people will have to pay towards their council tax to make up the difference. It is important to make sure that your council tax bill is correct. You may be able to get your bill reduced if you live alone or you are very unwell. You should contact your local Citizens Advice for more information about the scheme in your area.
You should get a single person’s discount on your council tax bill if you are the only adult living in a property. This will reduce the bill by 25%. You will get this discount if the other people you live with do not have to pay council tax. This might be if they are students or exempt due to a severe mental impairment.
Disability Reduction scheme
You may be able to get the council tax bill reduced if you or a person that lives with you needs extra space because of a disability. This reduction would be down to the next band. For example, you would be charged the band B rate if your property is in band C.
To qualify for the disabled band reduction you would have to show that the property is the main home for at least one disabled person. This doesn’t have to be the person responsible for paying the Council Tax.
The property must have an extra room to meet the needs of the disabled person. If the room is not a kitchen or bathroom it must be needed by the disabled person. Otherwise you need an extra space to allow for wheelchair use.
©A1 ESA/DLA/PIP Benefits Help and Support (UK only)