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    • joolslee
    • By joolslee 5th Oct 17, 11:58 AM
    • 12Posts
    • 0Thanks
    joolslee
    Council tax banding issue
    • #1
    • 5th Oct 17, 11:58 AM
    Council tax banding issue 5th Oct 17 at 11:58 AM
    Hi
    My daughter has a mental health diagnosis and is in a financial mess which I'm trying to sort out. A big problem is the amount of council tax she's paying.
    She moved into a new build ground floor flat around five years ago with her young son. Her flat is ground floor, 2 beds, no garden, windows on front elevation only meaning no window in kitchen, dining area, or bathroom. Her council tax banding is E.
    Hers is the only block of flats in a road of houses which are mainly C band with a few D.
    I can't understand the reasoning behind these bandings. She has challenged the banding twice and been told it is correct and she can't challenge again.
    Is there any advice our there please?
Page 1
    • Comms69
    • By Comms69 5th Oct 17, 12:05 PM
    • 467 Posts
    • 335 Thanks
    Comms69
    • #2
    • 5th Oct 17, 12:05 PM
    • #2
    • 5th Oct 17, 12:05 PM
    What for? If they've said it's right then it's right, you cant make them change it because you don't like it.
    • RedFraggle
    • By RedFraggle 5th Oct 17, 12:12 PM
    • 398 Posts
    • 914 Thanks
    RedFraggle
    • #3
    • 5th Oct 17, 12:12 PM
    • #3
    • 5th Oct 17, 12:12 PM
    Newer builds tend to be higher because it is based on property value and doesn't get put up in line with market value on existing older properties.
    Officially in a clique of idiots
    • 3mph
    • By 3mph 5th Oct 17, 12:21 PM
    • 178 Posts
    • 202 Thanks
    3mph
    • #4
    • 5th Oct 17, 12:21 PM
    • #4
    • 5th Oct 17, 12:21 PM
    Challenge it if you can justify comparisons. We bought our flat 4 months ago. It was Band I but the only ones which were I in the block were the Penthouse and one where someone had bought 2 and combined them.

    I spoke with the Valuation Office, sent details, got ours rebanded to H. Then I contacted the council with the new banding. I told the previous owners since I think they can reclaim the difference for the last 6 years.

    They obviously wont do it because you think it unfair, but they will if you can clearly show exactly the same or very similar properties at a different band.
    Google for rate bandings and look at all the properties next to.
    • pinklady21
    • By pinklady21 5th Oct 17, 12:55 PM
    • 240 Posts
    • 145 Thanks
    pinklady21
    • #5
    • 5th Oct 17, 12:55 PM
    • #5
    • 5th Oct 17, 12:55 PM
    Check the terms of any CT exemptions with your Council. Some allow a rebate for anyone with a significant mental health problem. I am aware of someone who had a diagnosis of dementia, but continued to live alone in a property. Council tax was rebated in full.
    So, while the CT banding may not be changed, there may end up being no tax to pay.
    • joolslee
    • By joolslee 5th Oct 17, 1:35 PM
    • 12 Posts
    • 0 Thanks
    joolslee
    • #6
    • 5th Oct 17, 1:35 PM
    • #6
    • 5th Oct 17, 1:35 PM
    Ok thank you all.

    I mentioned her mental health only to explain of why I'm trying to deal with this instead of her. Basically this is just one of MANY complex financial issues and if the banding is something that is unlikely to be remedied then I don't want to waste further valuable time on it.

    I did want to understand the rationale behind the decision to band her flat so much higher than the neighbouring houses and appreciate the information about new builds which probably explains it.

    I am looking at ways of getting exemption or discount due to her low income and mental health diagnosis and appreciate the advice regarding that.

    Thank you once again for the helpful replies.
    • CIS
    • By CIS 5th Oct 17, 1:40 PM
    • 10,027 Posts
    • 5,720 Thanks
    CIS
    • #7
    • 5th Oct 17, 1:40 PM
    • #7
    • 5th Oct 17, 1:40 PM
    Check the terms of any CT exemptions with your Council. Some allow a rebate for anyone with a significant mental health problem. I am aware of someone who had a diagnosis of dementia, but continued to live alone in a property. Council tax was rebated in full.
    So, while the CT banding may not be changed, there may end up being no tax to pay.
    Originally posted by pinklady21
    The Severely Mentally Impaired disregard (and any resultant exemption) applies across all local authorities.

    Craig
    I no longer work in Council Tax Recovery as I'm now a self employed Council Tax advisor and consultant with my own Council Tax consultancy business. My views are my own reading of the law and you should always check with the local authority in question.
    • 00ec25
    • By 00ec25 5th Oct 17, 1:45 PM
    • 5,027 Posts
    • 4,373 Thanks
    00ec25
    • #8
    • 5th Oct 17, 1:45 PM
    • #8
    • 5th Oct 17, 1:45 PM
    I am looking at ways of getting exemption or discount due to her low income and mental health diagnosis and appreciate the advice regarding that.

    Thank you once again for the helpful replies.
    Originally posted by joolslee
    low income - fair enough, apply and see if she qualifies. Easy criteria to assess.

    however, please don't get your hopes up regarding qualifying for a discount on grounds of mental health, because it must be

    "...someone who has been medically certified as having a permanent condition that affects their intelligence and social functioning (eg, Alzheimer's or Parkinson's, but many other conditions may apply) is 'disregarded for council tax purposes' in England, Scotland and Wales"
    https://www.moneysavingexpert.com/news/reclaim/2017/09/due-a-council-tax-discount-for-severe-mental-impairment-heres-how-to-claim
    • lincroft1710
    • By lincroft1710 5th Oct 17, 2:41 PM
    • 9,734 Posts
    • 7,759 Thanks
    lincroft1710
    • #9
    • 5th Oct 17, 2:41 PM
    • #9
    • 5th Oct 17, 2:41 PM
    as you have already tried twice and been refused (by the VOA?), it is likely your only remaining course of action is a formal appeal to a valuation tribunal. You will need better grounds than "it's unfair" or "she has a diagnosis".

    https://www.valuationtribunal.gov.uk/forms/appeal-forms/council-tax-banding/
    Originally posted by 00ec25
    There is a 6 month time limit on making appeals, OP's daughter is over 4 years outside this. Also the link you have used is where a formal appeal has been made to the VOA and there is a time limit of 3 months subsequent to the VOA decision not to allow the appeal
    Last edited by lincroft1710; 05-10-2017 at 2:48 PM.
    • AdrianC
    • By AdrianC 5th Oct 17, 6:10 PM
    • 15,276 Posts
    • 13,611 Thanks
    AdrianC
    When the VOA decide on an appeal against a banding, they give you details of the comparables they've looked at, and explain their logic.
    • 00ec25
    • By 00ec25 5th Oct 17, 6:18 PM
    • 5,027 Posts
    • 4,373 Thanks
    00ec25
    There is a 6 month time limit on making appeals, OP's daughter is over 4 years outside this. Also the link you have used is where a formal appeal has been made to the VOA and there is a time limit of 3 months subsequent to the VOA decision not to allow the appeal
    Originally posted by lincroft1710
    OK, I was aware there was a time limit, but could not be bothered to check what it was - misleading post you quote therefore deleted
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