Proposed changes to Council Tax Reduction Scheme from 1 April 2024

Closed 13 Oct 2023

Opened 11 Sep 2023


The council is thinking about making changes to the local Council Tax Reduction scheme for people who are working but also receiving Universal Credit.

What is Council Tax?

Council Tax is money that people pay each year for each and every home in Sefton.

Sefton uses this money to pay for local services, such as:

  • Schools
  • Emptying bins
  • Keeping the streets clean
  • Street lights

What is Council Tax reduction (CTR)?

If you are on a low income, you can apply for Council Tax ReductionThis would mean that you pay less in Council Tax.

The Government makes the rules for how much Council Tax Reduction that low-income pensioners (people aged 66 or over) could get.

Sefton Council makes the rules for how much Council Tax Reduction that working age customers (under 66 years old) on a low income could get.

The rules that we have in Sefton for working age customers are contained in a document called our “local Council Tax Reduction scheme".

There are nearly 15,000 people in Sefton getting help with their Council Tax through Council Tax Reduction as they have a low income.

Sefton’s local Council Tax Reduction scheme contains rules for many different circumstances that people may have, including customers who are:

      • Single
      • Married or Living together as a couple.
      • Have children
      • Have other people living with them
      • a carer
      • Living with ill health or have a disability
      • Working
      • Looking for work
      • Claiming Universal Credit
      • Claiming other benefits or tax credits.
      • Have other types of income (e.g. pensions)

What is Universal Credit

Universal Credit is a Government benefit paid to low income people that is paid by the Department for Works and Pensions and it helps people on a low income pay for

  • Daily living costs for the customer and their family such as food and household bills.
  • Housing costs such as rent, service charges or mortgage interest.
  • Childcare costs

Most new benefit claims for people under the age of 66 will be for Universal Credit.

Please note that at the end of this survey, before submitting your results, you will be asked if you want to provide an email address so that you can receive a PDF copy of your response.  This is completely optional.  The email address is only used to send the email to you via the online consultation system provided by Delib as the data processor.  The email address will not be stored with the responses and Sefton Council will not have access to it. 

Why your views matter

We want to make it easier for customers to budget their money and make it less confusing for them to know how much Council Tax they need to pay.

We want to save the council money and help customers by telling them the right amount they must pay as soon as possible.

What happens next

The results of this consultation will be reported to the Council Members at a Cabinet meeting in January 2024 and will help to inform the Council’s approach to Council Tax Reduction from 1 April 2024.

The Cabinet recommendation will be considered by full Council at a meeting in January 2024.


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