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Council Tax - Care Leaver Discretionary Reduction

Basildon Council will award a discretionary reduction to the Council Tax account of a young person leaving care to live alone, or to the Council Tax account of the household a young person joins after leaving care.

Eligibility for a care leaver discretionary reduction

A discretionary reduction to the Council Tax can be made to a young person who is leaving care, aged under 21 and...

  • who has been looked after by Essex County Council for at least 13 weeks since the age of 14; and who was looked after by the local authority at school-leaving age or after that date
  • or, who is entitled to 'leaving care support' from Essex County Council (ECC).

Entitlement to 'leaving care support' - The Children Act 1989 defines the categories of children entitled to leaving care support as:

  • 'Eligible children' - those young people aged 16-17 who are still in care and have been 'looked after' for a total of 13 weeks from the age of 14 and including their 16th birthday
  • 'Relevant children' - those young people aged 16 and 17 who have already left care, and who were 'looked after' for at least 13 weeks from the age of 14 and have been: 'looked after' at some time while they were 16 or 17
  • 'Former relevant children' - those young people aged 18, 19 or 20 who have been eligible and/or relevant.

Applications for a care leaver discretionary reduction

Important: Before a care leaver discretionary reduction can be awarded, applicants must take steps to reduce their council tax bill by claiming any other discounts, exemptions and council tax reductions to which they may also be entitled.

After entitlement to all other discounts, exemptions and council tax reductions has been claimed, Basildon Council will reduce the Council Tax liability of a young person leaving care to live alone, or of the household a young person joins after leaving care,  to be the same as it would be if the care leaver was a 'disregarded person' (such as a student).

How to apply

Applications should be made to Essex County Council personal advisors for care leavers.

For further information visit: Essex County Council - Leaving care.

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