Council Tax Support (CTS) is a reduction to a council tax bill and can be awarded to people on low incomes. It replaced Council Tax Benefit from 1 April 2013.
New scheme from 1 April 2019 to 31 March 2020
Once again many working age applicable amounts have been frozen at the April 2018 levels in line with the final year of the four year Housing Benefit freeze. Pensioner applicable amounts have increased by 2.6%. Changes have been made to align the Council Tax Support (CTS) scheme with the current Department for Work and Pensions Housing Benefit scheme and the current Department for Communities and Local Government prescribed pensioner scheme. However, this his year again the two children cap to personal allowances for new claims has not been adopted in our Council Tax Support scheme.
There are three main factors which will affect your CTS award from 1 April 2019:
- The level of the Merton Council Tax charge set in March 2019
- The level of the GLA precept for 2019-2020
- If you have other adults living in your household, for whom we have to make a deduction, as these have increased slightly as shown in the table below.
The table is for non-dependants aged 18 or over working on average 16 or more hours per week. If the average is less than 16 per week, then the lowest deduction applies. The lowest deduction also applies for non-dependants who are not working but not claiming State benefits, students during the Summer vacation, if they are not working and non-dependants aged under 25 claiming income related Employment and Support Allowance. Non dependants on Universal Credit with earned income the table below applies to their gross income.
Non dependant deductions for CTS from 1st April 2019 to 31st March 2020 |||
|Gross income at least £447.40 per week||£12.20|
|Gross income between £360.10 and £447.39 per week||£10.20|
|Gross income between £207.70 and £360.09 per week||£8.10|
|Gross income below £207.70 per week||£4.00|
On this page
Council Tax Support Scheme April 2019 to March 2020
The full CTS scheme rules come into force on 1 April 2019. They will be valid for one year until 31 March 2020. They are all the rules that we will use to decide Council Tax Support claims for that period and changes to awards.
London Borough of Merton Council Tax Support Scheme April 2019
Previous Council Tax Support Schemes
The full CTS scheme rules for each year, come into force on 1 April in each year. They were valid for one year until 31 March of the following year.. They are all the rules that we use to decide Council Tax Support claims for that year.
Main Council Tax Support
The amount of CTS depends on the amount of Council Tax you pay, the number of people who live with you and the income and savings you have.
A successful claimant will either get "maximum" CTS or "partial" CTS depending on their income.
See our Calculating Council Tax Support page for more information about how we work this out.
If you want to apply for Council Tax Support - see our Claiming Council Tax Support page for further information.
Once you have claimed CTS you need to remember to report changes of circumstances. See our Reporting changes for Council Tax Support page.
Second adult reduction
Second adult reduction is also known as alternative maximum council tax support. This is available to claim if your income is too high to get the main CTS but you have other adults living with you who have low incomes or are full time students. Other adults do not include your partner or spouse, joint tenants or your landlord.
If you apply for main Council Tax Support, we also work out whether you would be better off getting main Council Tax Support based on your income or second adult reduction based on the income of the other adults living with you. This is known as the "better buy" calculation.
Second adult reduction gives a reduction to your Council Tax bill depending on the income of the other adults.
A Council Tax payer has an income of £50,000 per year and does not qualify for main CTS. He does however, have a brother living with him who is not liable for the Council Tax. The brother works and earns £150 per week. Under second adult reduction the tax payer could get 15% reduction on his maximum Council Tax.
See our Working out Council Tax Support page for more information about how we work this out.
Couples and commercial tenants are not eligible to claim second adult reduction. If you want to apply for second adult reduction see our Claiming Council Tax Support page for further information.
Discretionary Council Tax Reduction
Our Local CTS scheme includes a provision for us to consider a discretionary Council Tax Reduction. This could be in exceptional cases where you have some exceptional circumstances that your main CTS award or Second Adult Reduction is still insufficient to cover your Council Tax liability. Even if you did not qualify for CTS you can apply, but wait until you have had your CTS claim decided first. Below is our Merton policy for
If you still feel there is a genuine need, complete the form below.
For more details go to our contact page.
Telephone: 020 8274 4903
Fax: 020 8545 3960