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Apply for a Council Tax Hardship payment

We recognise the impact the changes to the Local Council Tax Reduction Scheme (LCTRS) may have had on our most vulnerable residents and those that may have been hardest hit by Council Tax changes in 2021/22.

An Exceptional Hardship fund and policy has been established to support taxpayers who receive payments under the LCTRS, and who have a shortfall between the Council Tax due and the amount of LCTRS in payment.

The hardship payments are not payments of Council Tax Reduction and are to support those residents in exceptional situations with payment of their Council Tax.

The money to cover the reductions comes out of our own funds (with a contribution from the Office of the Fire, Police and Crime Commissioner for Northamptonshire). The decision to make a hardship payment including how much to award is at our discretion. This means we can make the decision not to pay you a hardship payment.

Exceptional hardship fund payments cannot be awarded:

  • where full LCTR is in payment
  • for any other reason, other than to reduce Council Tax liability
  • where an authorised officer from WNC considers there are unnecessary expenses
  • if the means tested assessment shows that there is no financial hardship
  • to reduce any Council Tax Reduction recoverable overpayment
  • to cover previous years’ Council Tax arrears
  • to cover a shortfall caused by a Department for Work and Pensions sanction or suspension which has been applied because the Council Taxpayer has turned down work, interview or training opportunities

Before you apply for an exceptional hardship payment

Before applying, you must:

  • demonstrate you have taken all reasonable steps to resolve the problems that are causing you to apply for the reduction
  • apply for any other types of Council Tax reduction you might be able to get
  • see if you can reduce your Council Tax by challenging your Council Tax band, if you have grounds to do so

Applying for a Council Tax hardship payment

We may ask you to provide evidence to verify your situation which could include asking for evidence of your income and expenses.

Your claim will not be processed until the evidence requested is provided.

Why information is on a different website
We are in the process of adding information to this new unitary council website. Some pages will give you a link back to a previous council website to help you find what you need. Read more about the council changes.

Last updated 28 April 2022