Exemptions

Some properties are exempt from council tax, which means there is no charge to pay.

Further information

The types of property can be occupied or unoccupied, and some of the exemptions have a time limit.

Contact us if you want to claim an exemption for any of the reasons below. You may be asked to fill in an application form and provide proof, and we may need to inspect your home.

The categories are as follows:

Unoccupied property exemptions

  • Unoccupied properties owned and last used by a registered charity (up to six months exempt)
  • Properties left unoccupied by someone in prison, unless imprisoned for non-payment of fines or council tax
  • Properties left unoccupied by someone living in a hospital, care home or nursing home with no plans to move back to the property
  • Properties left unoccupied by deceased persons where probate or letters of administration are to be granted; and properties where such a grant has been made in the last six months.
  • Properties left unoccupied, as the law forbids any one living there
  • Unoccupied properties to be used by a minister of religion
  • Properties left unoccupied by people receiving care somewhere other than a hospital, care home or nursing home
  • Properties left unoccupied by people providing care somewhere else
  • Properties left unoccupied, as the owner is a student living somewhere else
  • Properties left unoccupied due to repossession
  • Properties left unoccupied that are the responsibility of a trustee in bankruptcy
  • Empty caravan pitches or residential houseboat moorings
  • Unoccupied property that forms part of another property, which cannot be let separately because of planning rules.

Occupied property exemptions

  • Student halls of residence
  • Properties occupied only by full time students
  • Properties owned by the Ministry of Defence for UK armed forces
  • Properties occupied by visiting armed forces and their dependants
  • Properties occupied only by people under 18
  • Properties occupied only by people that are severely mentally impaired
  • Properties occupied by non-British diplomats
  • Self-contained annexes that are part of another home, and are occupied by dependent relatives that are over 65, or disabled, or severely mentally impaired.

Claiming exemptions

If you want to claim an exemption for any of the above reasons please contact us using the contact details at the bottom of this page. We may ask you to fill in an application form and provide proof, and we may need to inspect your home.

If you wish to advise us that you have been made bankrupt, please email us.

If you have an exemption, which will be shown on your bill, you must tell us within 21 days of any change in your circumstances that may affect it.

We will only consider backdating an exemption if there is a good reason why you have not asked for it earlier, and you can give satisfactory proof of your entitlement from an earlier date.

If we do not give you an exemption and you disagree with our decision you can make an appeal. Please see the appeals section which is linked at the top of this page.