The application process for Discretionary Council Tax Energy Rebate has now closed - applicants will be notified of the outcome of their claim by email shortly.

 

Discretionary Scheme

There will be some further funding available to help households who do not qualify under the core Energy Rebate scheme. This is a discretionary fund and will be used to support those suffering financial hardship as a result of the rising cost of living and will include support for those residents in Council Tax bands E to H.

Each Council have had to design a scheme to support its residents. Read the full scheme now.

In order for the maximum number of customers to receive assistance the scheme is largely based on pre identification. The rebate will be credited to Council Tax accounts to assist qualifying residents.

We have identified the following groups for auto award:

  • £150 to households in bands E to H in receipt of Local Council Tax Support or, 
  • £150 to households where a Council Tax disregard is applied (where some residents are apprentices, carers, students, severely mentally impaired) or, 
  • £150 to households in bands F-H which receive the Disabled Persons/Band Reduction for council tax or, 
  • £150 to households of newly banded properties or where a band reduction has meant they would have retrospectively qualified under the main scheme at the point of data extract and meet all the main scheme qualifications
  • a top up to households in Bands A to H that are in receipt of Local Council Tax Support and where a rebate has been paid. The top up value will be assessed after all awards of £150 have been made

What is an account credit? 

In order to reduce the onus to provide bank details, awards will be made directly onto individuals Council Tax accounts. Where an award of £150 is made, we will write to you to confirm the situation.

The council will not be contacting you by phone or text message to ask for bank details. Please do not give your bank details to anyone contacting you about this rebate claiming to be from the council except through your secure Grant Approval log in.

About the Energy Bills Rebate

On 3 February 2022 the Government announced a package of support which aims to help households with rising energy bills. Millions of households will receive up to £350 to help with the cost of living following a rise in the energy price cap.

Part of this provides funding for councils to give all households in England, whose main residence is listed in council tax bands A – D, a one-off non repayable payment of £150 from April 2022 to assist with the rise in energy costs. The government have set council’s a deadline to ensure all payments are made by 30 September 2022. 

Eligibility

You will receive the £150 energy rebate if all of the following apply: 

  • your property is in Council Tax band A to D (or band E where there is a disabled band reduction)
  • you are liable to pay Council Tax
  • the property is your sole and main residence on 01 April 2022

You will also qualify if you fulfil all of the above criteria and

  • do not currently pay any Council Tax because you receive maximum Council Tax support and have no Council Tax to pay, or;
  • the property is in exemption classes N, S, U or W:
    • N - properties occupied solely by students
    • S - occupied by under eighteen year olds only
    • U - occupied only by severely mentally impaired persons
    • W - annexe occupied by dependant relative

You will not be eligible if: 

  • your property is a second home
  • your property was empty on 1 April 2022
  • you are in Council Tax bands E to H (some band E properties are eligible where there is a disabled band reduction)

This is a new scheme that councils haven’t undertaken before, especially for so many residents. We needed to create a method of extracting sensitive data and consider how that can be used to pay the governments rebate. As this hasn’t been done before, our software suppliers have been busy trying to do this on our behalf.

To put this into context, we will have to pay over 75,000 residents who pay by Direct Debit and then request, obtain, and securely hold bank details for the remaining 45,000 residents. In addition, we need to verify the bank details we are paying the Energy Rebate into.

How the £150 will be paid to you 

Account Credit  

We identified all potential qualifiers and invited them to make a claim for the rebate. In cases where customers did not apply or provide sufficient evidence to support their claim, a credit of £150 was made onto their Council Tax accounts. This decision was taken to ensure that our customers did not miss out on the vital award.  

If you pay by direct debit

We have made payments to more than 77,000 Direct Debit payers between 11 and 13 May 2022 and the payments will show in bank accounts in 2 or 3 days. Letters have been issued to the recipients.

If you pay your council tax by direct debit, the £150 Energy Rebate will be paid directly to the account that we use to collect your payments. The £150 Energy Rebate payment will not be deducted from your council tax bill. We will still collect your direct debit on the dates shown on your bill.

There are a couple of exceptions. If you recently set up a new direct debit instruction we will not be able to make an energy rebate to you automatically, we will write to you during May and invite you to make an online application.

Also, the government has said we are not allowed to automatically make payment where the bank account name and the name on the Council Tax account don’t match (even where we have successfully collected Council Tax for many months or even years). This may be that you changed the name on your bank account in the past or that someone else pays the Council Tax for you. In such cases we aim to write to those concerned during May to invite them to claim and confirm the bank account to be used for payment.

If you do not pay by direct debit

If you don’t pay your Council Tax by direct debit, and are eligible for an energy rebate payment, we will write to you later in May and invite you to claim.

We can only accept applications made electronically and you will be sent a letter inviting you to apply. It will provide you with all the information you need to make your claim. If you are not able to complete the online application yourself the letter will provide details of any help we can provide.

We will make this process simple and straightforward and will work with other support agencies, such as Citizens Advice Bureau, to ensure everyone that is entitled can receive the rebate. If you are entitled to this rebate payment don’t worry we will ensure that you do not miss out and will receive it. 

Once your claim is received and verified we will process the payment directly to your bank account.

Please note, the council will not telephone, email or text you to ask for your bank details unless there is a problem with your claim. 

People who share paying the bills

Only one payment of £150 can be paid per property. Where the Council Tax is paid by direct debit the £150 will be paid to the account that is used to pay the Council Tax. Where the Council Tax is not paid by direct debit, customers will need to decide who is going to apply. 

We will pay whoever applies for the property, as long as the applicant is one of the liable parties for paying Council Tax and we can successfully verify the details they provide ensuring only one payment per property.

Exceptions

This is a rebate provided by the government and we must work within their eligibility criteria and pay the rebate to the correct person. We are unable to allow ineligible residents a rebate. 

Keeping your data safe

We take your safety seriously and unfortunately the council tax rebate creates an opportunity for malicious fraudsters to pose as government departments, local authorities or council tax rebate services in order to collect personal or banking information from residents.

With this in mind, our online grant approval service is designed to protect your data enabling you to claim and make your payments securely.

If you are concerned about scams, suspicious emails, phone calls or text messages, please refer to guidance published by Action Fraud and the National Cyber Security Centre's Suspicious Email Reporting Service (SERS).

Share this page