Are you liable to pay Council Tax? Check your local authority’s flexibility during COVID-19

If you are living with a non-student partner and your household has to pay Council Tax, you may be worried about how to afford this during the current health crisis.

Local Authorities are permitted to suspend payment for 2 months and spread the balance over the other 10 months; normally this is automatically applied to February and March, but we understand they may also be able to apply this to April and May in the new payment year, which starts on Wednesday 1st April 2020.

We don’t yet know whether authorities will do this, but Brighton and Hove City Council have put out the following message:

 “If anyone is concerned about being able to pay council tax bills due to the impact of the Coronavirus, please let us know as soon as possible. The best way is to contact us via the web site which has an online form or by phone on 01273 291 291. Please note that due to high call volumes we recommend using the online form.”

Lewes and Eastbourne Council have also released a statement that they may agree to altering payments from 10 months to 12 months to reduce the immediate payment, or may in some circumstances make reductions to payments. Their website refers to a government hardship fund for those on very low incomes who are already in receipt of council tax reduction but have to pay something each month. Those experiencing difficulty with paying their council tax can make a claim for Council Tax Reduction but it is probably most advisable to contact the council direct to talk through your individual circumstances.

If you live within Adur and Worthing, we advise you to contact the council direct using their online self service platform.

The Student Advisers are keeping up to date with the government’s economic interventions during this crisis. If there are any financial issues which you are worried about, please contact the Student Advice Service by email studentadvice@brighton.ac.uk and we will be back in touch.

Student Advice Service

Helen is the Student Advice Service Manager within Student Services and is based in Tithe Barn on the Moulsecoomb campus

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