Residents struggling to pay council tax due to Covid-19 can apply for support

Croydon Council aims to help those struggling to pay their council tax bills by introducing two new schemes. Pic: @cikstefan – Unsplash

Residents struggling to pay their council tax bills as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic can apply for support from Croydon Council’s two new council tax support schemes, as announced at their last cabinet meeting.

The Covid-19 hardship schemes will see the Council Tax Hardship Fund expanded. The fund forms part of the council’s £4.4m package of council tax support for residents experiencing financial difficulty because of the lockdown and subsequent furlough.

Any residents of working age – those aged 15-64 – making a new council tax support claim between April 1 and May 30 2020 will receive up to £150 off their council tax bill during 2020/21, once their claim has been approved and processed. 

This additional support comes as the council has seen a 111 per cent increase in council tax support claims compared to the same time last year, equating to 1,698 new claims being received in the first three weeks of lockdown. 

The council have also said that they will support working-age residents who are not entitled to council tax support but are suffering financially due to the coronavirus crisis. This includes self-employed residents who either have reduced or no earnings, residents that are unemployed or furloughed and residents who have reduced work such as zero-hour employment contracts.

These new schemes follow the launch of two other council tax packages of support that were put into effect in March. 

To help residents struggling financially, the council are authorising a reduction of up to £150 for existing council tax support claimants and the opportunity to defer payment of their council tax for two months.

This will allow residents to pay their council tax over ten instalments from June 2020 to March 2021.

Councillor Simon Hall, cabinet member for finance and resources, said: “As a council we remain committed to supporting all of our residents in any way we can do, and I am pleased we have been able to expand our council tax support offer to incorporate more of those in need. We will continue to reassess how we can support those who have found their financial circumstances change as a result of coronavirus.”

Residents wishing to apply for the Covid-19 hardship scheme funding can apply online here.

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