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Council Tax fraud

What is Council Tax fraud?

Council Tax fraud can occur where a taxpayer:

  • falsely claims a discount or exemption to which they are not entitled to; or
  • fails to notify the local authority promptly when their circumstances change.

This may include:

  • claiming 25% single occupancy discount when there is more than one adult, aged 18 years or over, living in the household who is not disregarded for Council Tax purposes;
  • occupying a property that is in receipt of an unoccupied exemption;
  • falsely claiming a student reduction or exemption;
  • falsely claiming support under the Council Tax Reduction scheme, which may include failing to declare:
    • income from earnings or other benefits;
    • a partner or an another adult is living in the property; or
    • money held in bank accounts, savings and investments.

What are the costs due to Council Tax fraud?

Nationally it is estimated that between 4% and 5% of claims for discounts and exemptions are fraudulent with an annual loss of over £133m.

How does this impact on you?

For every penny that is defrauded from the local authority (and the taxpayer), this reduces the level of available resources the Council has and therefore the level of services the local authority can provide.

If someone commits Council Tax fraud they could be prosecuted or fined and will be required to pay back any fraudulent awards they have received.

Report your suspicions

Fraud Hotline - 0800 953 0217

Report Online