Reductions and Exemptions for the bereaved
We understand the difficulties relatives and representatives’
experience and the arrangements that need to be made when someone
It is understandable that notifying
the council tax office when someone has died will take second place
to the many other arrangements that have to be made.
However, as soon as possible, a
relative, friend or solicitor of the deceased should inform the
council tax office about the death of an occupant of a
You can tell us by e-mail at
firstname.lastname@example.org telephone us on 01902
696664, or in writing.
information do we need when someone dies?
You need to let us know:
• The name of the deceased persons and the date they died;
• The address where they lived
• The names of the remaining occupants
(over 18 years old)
If the deceased was a council tax
payer we will need the following information:
• The names and addresses of any
executors to the will of the deceased person;and
• The name and address of an appointed
solicitor if you wish the council to deal direct with a
If the person who died rented their home, tell us when the
tenancy or lease will end, and the name and address of the
landlord. You will also need to contact the landlord straightaway
if you wish to end the tenancy.
deceased person a landlord or owner of an empty
If the person who died rented out their property, or owned an
empty property, let us know so we can keep our records up-to-date.
Also, please let us know when the property changes hands to the
next of kin or a new owner.
I am unable to provide all of this information?
There is no need to worry. If you are
providing this information only a short time after a person's death
you may only be in a position to give their name and address.
Further information can always be provided once it is known.
How will Council Tax be
affected by the death of an adult occupant?
When a property had been occupied by a single person, who either
owned or rented the property, and that person dies, the property is
exempt from council tax payment for as long as it remains
unoccupied, and until probate is granted.
Following a grant of probate, a
further six months exemption is possible as long as the property
remains unoccupied and has not been sold or transferred to someone
It is important that the executor(s) keep the council tax office
- the date probate is granted,
- the date when furniture is removed
from the property, whether this is before, or after probate has
- details of the transfer or sale of
the property or the end date of the tenancy,
- when the estate is settled
During this time the council may contact the executors
periodically to review entitlement to the exemption.
Six months from the date
probate is granted the full council tax will be due to be paid by
the executors of the estate.
Depending on how many people still live at the deceased person’s
property there may be a discount or exemption that can be claimed.
The main reductions are: -
- If there is only one adult occupier left at the property a 25%
discount can be claimed.
- If the property is unoccupied and was
rented by the deceased, it will normally be exempt from charges
until the keys are returned to the owner. This is when the tenancy
is considered to end.
- If the property was owned by the
deceased and is unoccupied, while it hasn’t been sold or
transferred, it will be exempt from charges until probate is
granted and for up to six months after that date if it remains
- If the property remains unoccupied
and unfurnished, six months after probate is granted, the full rate
of council tax becomes payable from the deceased’s estate. If
furniture is removed after this time 100% discount can be applied
for three months from the date the furniture was removed.
An additional amount of council tax (a
'premium') is to be paid when a property has been unoccupied
unfurnished for a continuous period of
two years. A 50% premium is added to the council tax, meaning
that the owners of properties which have been unoccupied and
unfurnished for a continuous period of two years will have to pay
the whole council tax bill, plus an extra 50%.
We regularly inspect unoccupied
properties, and you can help us keep our records up to date by
informing us whenever a change occurs.
If you have been claiming Council Tax Support as a couple,
it may mean that you will need to make a claim in your own right.
Please call customer services on (01902) 696668
where a member of staff will help you with your
The claim process has been made as
simple as possible and on most occasions can be completed on line
without the need to visit the council offices in person. For
further information & access to the online Council Tax Support
calculator please click here.
If you have not
previously claimed as a couple, you may wish to consider applying
based on your current
circumstances. If you have any doubt
as to whether you may qualify please contact customer services on
(01902) 696668 where a member of staff can
advise you and explain the application process.
Tax Liability for Executors
Executors are the people appointed in the will to deal with the
estate of a person who has died.
When probate is granted a document is
issued to the executor providing them with the authority to deal
with the estate.
If, after probate is granted ownership
of a property is transferred to a beneficiary of the will,
any liability for council tax passes to the
beneficiary. A new account will be set up in the
If for any reason after probate has
been granted the property remains under the control of the estate
for more than six months, a full council tax charge is due. The
executor is responsible for making payment of the council tax.
The executor is not personally liable
for council tax charges, and payment should be made from the
If the executor cannot make payment
for any reason they should contact the council immediately. You can
contact us by e-mail at email@example.com
telephone us on (01902) 696664, or in writing.
|Telephone: (01902) 696664
||South Staffordshire Council
|Fax: (01902) 696630