Unoccupied and unfurnished properties can receive an exemption from paying council tax in certain circumstances.
In some cases a property can be occupied and an exemption will still apply.
Class A: Properties undergoing (or undergone) major structural repair work
From 1 April 2013 this exemption has been replaced by a 100% discount but will still apply for a maximum period of 12 months. For further information on this, please visit our discounts page.
Please apply for this discount by using the Class A discount form.
Class B: Unoccupied dwellings owned by a charity
A property owned by a charity is exempt for up to six months from the date that the last resident moved out. To qualify, it must have been last used for the purpose of the charity.
The property may remain furnished. If the property is occupied for a period of less than six weeks, this will not affect the exemption (other than that there will be no exemption during this time).
Class C: Unoccupied and unfurnished properties
From 1 April 2013, this exemption has been replaced by a 100% discount, and will only apply for a maximum period of six weeks. For further information on this discount please visit our discounts page.
Please apply for this discount by using the Class C discount form.
Class D: A property left empty by a person detained elsewhere
This exemption applies to unoccupied properties where the owner or tenant is detained in prison, hospital or other place of detention. This exemption does not apply if the person has been detained for non-payment of council tax or fines.
Confirmation will be sought from the appropriate place of detention.
Class E: A property left empty by a person now in hospital or a care home
This exemption applies where the owner or tenant has their sole or main residence in a hospital, care home or nursing home in which they are receiving care.
Confirmation will be sought from the relevant hospital or care home. Temporary stays in hospital or care homes do not qualify for this exemption.
Class F: An unoccupied property where the liable person has died
This exemption applies to properties where the person liable for council tax has died. The property must have remained unoccupied since the person's death but it can remain furnished.
The exemption can continue for a period of up to six months after probate has been granted.
Where there are other residents in the property, no exemption can be applied. Where a property is owned jointly, the death of one joint owner does not enable this exemption.
Class G: Occupation prohibited by law
Unoccupied dwellings that have their occupation prohibited by law, or are unoccupied by reason of any action taken by a public body to prohibit occupation (including planning condition).
Class H: Unoccupied properties awaiting religious occupation
An unoccupied dwelling which is held for the purpose of being available for occupation by a minister of any religious denomination as a residence from which to perform the duties of office.
Class I: Dwelling left empty by people receiving care
This exemption applies to properties that become unoccupied due to the resident having vacated to receive care with somebody else. Please note that if the liable person is now living in a care home or nursing home, a Class E exemption may apply.
Class J: An unoccupied property where the liable person is providing personal care
This exemption applies to properties which are unoccupied because the owner or tenant has moved elsewhere to provide care.
Class K: Empty properties owned by a student
An unoccupied property owned by a student and last occupied solely by that student is exempt from council tax. This applies if the student has left the property within six weeks of starting their course.
Class L: Properties with a mortgagee in possession
This exemption applies to properties where the mortgagee has taken possession of the property under the terms of the mortgage. The property must be unoccupied to be eligible.
Class M: Student halls of residence
The accommodation must be owned or managed by a prescribed educational establishment.
Class N: Properties occupied solely by students
A property is exempt if it is only occupied by students. The council will also need confirmation from your college or university of your student status. This will normally be in the form of a student certificate.
Class O: Properties in armed forces occupation
Living accommodation for UK armed forces which is owned by the Ministry of Defence is exempt.
Class P: Properties occupied by members of visiting forces
This exemption applies if anyone who would be liable for council tax has a relevant association with a visiting force from a country to which the Visiting Forces Act 1952 applies.
Class Q: Properties which are empty and where the liable person is a trustee in bankruptcy
Where the person liable to pay the council tax is a trustee in bankruptcy, the property is exempt if it is unoccupied.
Class R: An unoccupied pitch or mooring
A pitch which is not occupied by a caravan or a mooring which is not occupied by a boat is exempt.
Class S: Properties where all occupants are aged under 18
Class T: Unoccupied annexes
This exemption applies to annexes which are unoccupied and have restrictions preventing them being let separately to the main dwelling. Confirmation of the restrictions will be sought from the relevant body.
Class U: Properties where all occupants are severely mentally impaired (SMI)
Severe Mental Impairment is a medical diagnosis, however the impairment can be caused by conditions including Dementia or Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s and severe learning difficulties. For the purposes of the Local Government Finance act 1992, a person is Severely Mentally impaired if he or she has a “Severe impairment of intelligence, and social functioning, (however caused) which appears to be permanent”. In other words a severe problem, linked to intelligence that appears to be permanent.
This exemption applies to properties which are occupied by people who are severely mentally impaired. Confirmation will be sought from your GP.
Class V: A property which is the main residence of a person with diplomatic privilege or immunity
A property is exempt if it is the main residence of at least one person on whom such privileges and immunities apply.
Class W: Granny Annexe
An annexe may be exempt if all the occupiers are dependant relatives of those living in the main property. A dependant relative is defined as a person who is 65 or over, or a person who is severely mentally impaired, or a person who is substantially and permanently disabled (whether by illness, injury, congenital deformity or otherwise). All occupiers of the annexe must qualify for the Class W to be considered.
If your annexe is occupied by a relative but you do not qualify for the Class W exemption, you may be entitled to a discount. Further information on this can be found on our discounts page.