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The current processing time for new applications and changes to benefit claims is an average of 6 weeks. If you contact us with a general enquiry online we will reply to you within 48 working hours.

We have a limited fund to provide additional help for those struggling to pay their council tax. Awards will only be made in exceptional circumstances.

There are two different reductions that can be awarded:

  • Exceptional Hardship Payments (EHP)
  • Discretionary discount

  Download the application form

All awards are made on a temporary basis, to assist in the short term. 

More about the help available

EHP can be paid to those in receipt of Council Tax Support who are suffering financial hardship.

Who can claim Exceptional Hardship Payments?

You must be receiving Council Tax Support to be able to claim Exceptional Hardship Payments.

Exceptional Hardship will also be considered from households who were entitled to Council Tax Support on 31 March 2017 but no longer entitled from 1 April 2017 due to the changes in the Council Tax Support scheme.

Although anyone who gets Council Tax Support can submit a claim you will be more likely to receive help if you are in one of the vulnerable groups below and you can show that you are in severe financial hardship:

  • You or a member of your family are disabled
  • You are a lone parent with children under five receiving certain benefits due to a low income
  • You are a carer receiving certain benefits due to a low income
  • Have suffered domestic violence in the last 12 months
  • You are a foster carer
  • You are a care leaver under the age of 22
  • You have been in a hostel for at least three months
  • You are attending a rehabilitation programme for drug or alcohol dependency

Discretionary Discount can be awarded in exceptional circumstances if you are not entitled to Council Tax Support. You would normally need to be suffering financial hardship for an award to be made.

Who can claim a Discretionary Discount?

If you are not entitled to Council Tax Support but are suffering financial hardship or can show that your personal circumstances justify a reduction in council tax you may be able to get a temporary discretionary discount. Your circumstances would need to be exceptional for an award to be made.