The amount of Council Tax you pay
The amount of Council Tax you pay is set each year by the 4 preceptors of the tax. Blackpool Council receives the largest share to meet the cost of running statutory services and an extra precept (charge) is also added to provide ring fenced funding for Adult Social Care in the borough. Your Council Tax also funds the emergency services by providing funding for The Police and Crime Commissioner for Lancashire and for the Lancashire Fire Authority. All of these preceptors set their own tax each year via a democratic process. Further information on the Blackpool Council tax setting.
There is one bill per dwelling and each property is allocated one of the eight valuation bands according to its open market capital value at 1st April 1991. Your band is shown on your bill. There are strict time limits for appeals against your banding, and this must be made within six months of you becoming liable for the Council Tax on your property. Further information about your Council Tax band.
The Valuation Office Agency are responsible for banding properties, not the Council.
Payment by 12 monthly instalments
You may choose to pay your Council Tax in 12 monthly instalments instead of 10. To do this you must contact an advisor on 01253 478741 by 14th April 2020 to allow us to amend your bill.
There are several different instalment dates available. If you would like to change the date allocated to you, please contact an advisor on 01253 478741 to discuss your account.
Council Tax Reduction
Council Tax Reduction (CTR) provides assistance to people on a low income to help pay their Council Tax. If you receive CTR the amount you receive will be shown on this bill. Details of the scheme can be found on our website, where you can apply online or report a change of circumstances.
If you receive CTR you have a duty to tell us immediately about any changes to your circumstances. Failing to comply with that duty could mean you repay any amount you were not entitled to and you could face prosecution.
Examples of changes we need to be told about include any change to your income, to your household, your Universal Credit award, or if you move address. If in doubt, tell us of the change. You can report your changes on our online portal.
If you think any CTR decision is wrong you must tell us within one month of this notice or we may not be able to help. You can ask for an explanation of our decision, ask us to look at it again, or appeal (in writing) against it.
If you make a claim for Universal Credit you should claim Council Tax Reduction from the Council straight away, as this cannot be backdated. You can claim online via our online portal.
This is awarded where special adaptations have been made to your home to accommodate a disabled resident. If you qualify you will receive a reduction equivalent to one band on your bill. An initial inspection of your home will be made prior to the award of this relief, and a new application is required each year.
Discounts and Exemptions
A Single Occupier Discount of 25% is applied if you have previously declared that you are the only adult resident at the address. But if your circumstances have changed and this is no longer the case (maybe another adult has moved into this address or a child has become 18) you must inform us immediately so that your bill can be adjusted. We will check to see that the information you provide is correct, which may involve cross-checking data with external bodies.
In certain circumstances other discounts are available to the following groups of people:
Properties which are unoccupied and substantially unfurnished may qualify for a 100% discount up to a maximum of 3 months, but unoccupied properties which are uninhabitable and/or undergoing major structural alterations do not qualify for a discount.
A 50% Council Tax reduction applies where certain criteria are met in relation to annexes occupied by a relative of the occupier of the main dwelling, or for people with annexes which are unoccupied.
If you think we’ve made a mistake with your Council Tax, or you think you may be entitled to a discount, exemption or relief, please contact us in writing and we will look at it again.
Some properties are exempt from Council Tax, which means you do not have to pay Council Tax for them. These are the different classes of exemption:
- An unoccupied property owned and previously used by a charity. The maximum exemption period is 6 months.
- An unoccupied property which was the previous residence of someone now detained in custody.
- An unoccupied property which was the previous residence of someone who has moved permanently into a residential home or hospital to receive care.
- An unoccupied property which is waiting for probate or letters of administration to be granted. The maximum exemption is for 6 months after probate or letters of administration have been granted.
- A property which is unoccupied because the law forbids occupation.
- An unoccupied property reserved for a minister of religion.
- An unoccupied property which was the previous residence of someone who has permanently moved into another property (not a residential home or hospital) to receive personal care.
- An unoccupied property which was the previous residence of someone who has permanently moved away to provide personal care to another person.
- An unoccupied property which was the previous residence of someone who is now a full time qualifying student and who now lives elsewhere.
- An unoccupied property where the mortgage lender is in possession.
- Student halls of residence.
- A property occupied only by full time qualifying students.
- An armed forces barracks.
- Accommodation for visiting forces and dependents.
- An unoccupied property which is controlled by the trustee in bankruptcy following insolvency proceedings.
- A vacant caravan pitch or boat mooring.
- A property occupied only by people aged under 18 years.
- An unoccupied annex which may not be let separately without a breach of planning control.
- An occupied property where all of the residents are deemed to be severely mentally impaired, as confirmed by a registered medical practitioner.
- A property occupied by a foreign diplomat.
- An annex occupied by a dependent elderly or disabled relative.
Long Term Empty Premium Charge
Properties left empty for more than 2 years will be charged a premium. Where the property has been empty for more than 2 years a premium of 100% will be added to the charge, and where the property has been empty for more than 5 years a premium of 200% will be added to the charge.
Adult Social Care Funding
The Secretary of State made an offer to adult social care authorities. (“Adult social care authorities” are local authorities which have functions under Part 1 of the Care Act 2014, namely county councils in England, district councils for an area in England for which there is no county council, London borough councils, the Common Council of the City of London and the Council of the Isles of Scilly.)
The offer was the option of an adult social care authority being able to charge an additional “precept” on its council tax without holding a referendum, to assist the authority in meeting its expenditure on adult social care from the financial year 2016-17. It was originally made in respect of the financial years up to and including 2019-20. If the Secretary of State chooses to renew this offer in respect of a particular financial year, this is subject to the approval of the House of Commons.
If you would like to receive a paper copy of the financial information relating to the website links of your bill, your request should initially be made in writing to the address on your Council Tax bill.
Data Protection Legislation
Blackpool Council will process the information you provide in accordance with the current Data Protection Legislation. The information will only be held and processed for the purpose of the assessment and collection of taxes and revenues and other compatible purposes such as corporate information systems and the prevention and detection of fraud or crime. Further information on how we use your data.
The Council is obliged to comply with the requirements of the National Fraud Initiative. Further information about the National Fraud Initiative.