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to think not everyone realises that Council Tax Benefit will disappear from April?

(102 Posts)
aufaniae Sat 22-Dec-12 09:51:46

How this might affect you depends on your postcode as it will be up to councils how they manage the collection of council tax.

For those currently on low incomes - we may well lose Council Tax Benefit all together

Those of you with second homes / empty properties - your local council may decide to do away with discounts. Some are proposing charging double for second homes.

Article here: "The peer who designed the "poll tax" has warned that Council Tax Benefit cuts risk creating a "poll tax Mark 2"."

Each council could do it differently. Do you know what your council is proposing?

aufaniae Sat 22-Dec-12 09:52:52

I'm not sure if students will still be automatically exempt or not - does anyone know?

There are two things which will remain the same: councils will not being allowed to reduce benefit for pensioners or to change the 25% discount for households with just one adult in them.

InNeedOfBrandyButter Sat 22-Dec-12 09:54:00

I thought it would be paid all in one? I have most of my ct paid as I'm a LP and only work 16hrs.

aufaniae Sat 22-Dec-12 10:02:09

At the moment, everyone who is entitled to it gets Council Tax Benefit at a set rate.

That's being abolished, and it's up to local councils what they do about providing a benefit / discount for low income households, and other households which currently have discounts.

So it will vary from council to council.

The only thing that's protected is that pensioners will have their CT covered, and there will still be a 25% discount for single people.

If you're "just" a low-income household, you will not necessarily have your council tax covered in the way it is now.

sashh Sat 22-Dec-12 10:28:50

I'm not sure if students will still be automatically exempt or not - does anyone know?

Not all students are exempt. I had a live in carer so had to pay 50%. That wasn't easy.

aufaniae Sat 22-Dec-12 10:47:59

Sorry sassh you're right, not all students are exempt. Students are only exempt currently if living in a household which is 100% students.

However if only one person in the household is a non-student household I think the household should still qualify for the single person discount currently?

But anyway, making you pay CT because you need a carer is really unfair!

sashh Sat 22-Dec-12 10:52:21

I think so too. It's discrimination isn't it?

Birdsgottafly Sat 22-Dec-12 11:01:40

I'm not sure if students will still be automatically exempt or not - does anyone know

No they won't be, individual councils can set there own exemptions, though.
Certain students, Nursing etc, will be exempt, still.

aufaniae Sat 22-Dec-12 11:15:12

OK, so this will affect many affect parents supporting their DCs through uni too, as well as the students themselves of course.

aufaniae Sat 22-Dec-12 11:18:07

I wonder if whether councils still provide an exemption for students or not will have an impact on applications to universities in their areas? I expect it could well.

BitofSparklingPerry Sat 22-Dec-12 11:27:10

Errr... Council tax benefit is not a set rate, it is a sliding scale. When we are very poor, we pay no council tax, when we are a bit poor we pay a small mount, when we are rich we pay the full whack.

aufaniae Sat 22-Dec-12 11:37:35

Sorry, I accept that was badly worded!

By set, I meant it's currently the same for everyone everywhere, depending on their circumstances / eligibility for assistance. The amount of assistance is set - but within a sliding scale as you say.

What's changing is that they are getting rid of Council Tax Benefit entirely and leaving it up to local councils how they deal with people who currently get CTB.

BitofSparklingPerry Sat 22-Dec-12 11:40:47

Ok, fair enough then :-)

Orwellian Sat 22-Dec-12 11:45:58

I think it is a good idea. Everyone uses council services (everyone gets their bins emptied at the very least), so everyone should contribute something. Why should those already paying thousands of pounds a year have to pay even more to subsidise those who don't? And they won't have to pay nearly as much as those who pay the full amount anyway. Everyone is struggling and if "we are all in it together" then everyone should pay! Besides, if everyone is contributing it will give them a bit more sense of social responsibility and have a vested interest in their local community which they are financially contributing to!

CurrentBun Sat 22-Dec-12 11:48:03

I wonder if you have to pay it when you end up in the workhouse. That'll be next!

InNeedOfBrandyButter Sat 22-Dec-12 11:51:15

Yes people who cannot even afford to put their heating on while feeding their family need another bill to feel part of the community hmm

aufaniae Sat 22-Dec-12 11:51:15

Right. So pushing people further into poverty will them more of a sense of "social responsibility"? Right you are hmm

Everyone is not struggling. The bankers who are partly responsible for pushing us into recession are doing very nicely indeed thank you very much. As our our very privileged cabinet.

All in it together? Seriously. Are you having a laugh?

aufaniae Sat 22-Dec-12 11:52:14

*As are our very privileged cabinet.

<Must remember to proof read!>

aufaniae Sat 22-Dec-12 11:53:26

Birdsgottafly can I ask where you got that from?

DP and I are both students and would like to take the issue up with our SU.
Can't find a reliable source for it online as yet ...

CurrentBun Sat 22-Dec-12 11:55:01

Why don't the unemployed who are claiming benefits empty the bins. That way they can feel part of the community. Lets face it, they've nothing better to do, there are no jobs out there for them to find. Umm, on second thoughts that will put the bin men out of work and they'll have to claim benefits too and empty the bins for free.

LRDtheFeministDude Sat 22-Dec-12 11:55:49

'Students are only exempt currently if living in a household which is 100% students.'

No, that's wrong. I'm a full time student and DH gets a discount on his council tax because he counts as a single person (ie., I don't count for CT purposes).

I would like to know if we'll keep getting that discount but can't seem to work it out. It'll matter for us because even though I'm trying to get a job at the moment, DH wants to go back and study soon so we'll be the other way around.

fortyplus Sat 22-Dec-12 12:00:48

Look on your local council's website - they've probably been consulting on it. Where I live the elderly, disabled and people with children under 5 will still get it in full. Everyone else will lose out to some extent.

It does make me cross when people go on about scroungers - around 60% of those in receipt of benefits are working.

Ill health, relationship breakdown, job loss, business failure... it could be you or me next!

Orwellian Sat 22-Dec-12 12:00:51

Plenty of people in work who are ineligible for help paying their council tax (because they are just above the cut-off) cannot afford to pay more council tax. Those who will have to pay are of working age (pensioners and those on disability benefits will be exempt). I don't see why those of working age can't contribute something (and again it will be a very small percentage compared to those who pay the full council tax). Please no hyperbole about "workhouses". There is assistance for those in poverty and thankfully we do live in a country where we spend far more on welfare than we get through income tax receipts.

EwanHoHoHozami Sat 22-Dec-12 12:01:06

I didn't know this. I was about to apply sad

should I not bother?

fortyplus Sat 22-Dec-12 12:02:36

EwanHoHoHozami - you still need to apply. The changes don't take place till April and you may still receive something.

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