Obscure ‘Council Tax Support’ Exemption Criteria
There could be a shock in store for the under privileged who are claiming the new Council Tax Support (council tax) from the supposedly 'fairer' Newcastle under Lyme Borough Council.
It appears that new measures to be brought in for benefit claimants on April 1st 2013 are obscure to the independent eye.
Currently the council are uncertain regarding the 100% Council Tax Support under the new scheme for Employment Support Allowance (ESA) claimants. Whereas paragraph 57.1A of the council's blueprint on the new tax specifically states that those who will be exempt from the tax will be those receiving a Severe Disability Premium within Employment and Support Allowance.
However, there is no Severe Disability Premium in ESA, only 'Components' (Work-related activity or Support component).
It appears that when attempting to gain some clarification on this issue it became even more confusing.
A representative from the Borough Council said today:
"The new Council Tax Support only offers exemption from council tax for Pensioners and those on a Severe Disability Premium like High Rate DLA. Everybody else on benefits will have to pay 20% of the bill.
For example, if you are in one bedroom flat and claiming benefits your Council Tax bill will be in the region of £144 per year (or approximately £14 per month)."
Full clarification from Newcastle Borough Council regarding this matter is hopefully forthcoming sooner rather than later.