Council Tax Reduction/Support Appeal

You may receive a means tested reduction to your council tax bill because you are on a low income.

Your council sets the scheme and decides whether you are entitled to help with your bill. If you think the council’s decision is wrong, you may be able to appeal. This is a free service.

If you are appealing a decision to not grant a disabled band reduction, a discount, an exemption or the charging of a premium you should choose council tax liability appeal.

If you are appealing the decision not to grant a reduction to the band of your property, you should choose council tax valuation appeal.

Please note: before you appeal, you must have already contacted your local council to explain what the problem is. The council should reply to you within 2 months. If you are not happy with the council’s decision, you can make an appeal to us.  

The appeal process

If you would like to appeal the decision made by your local council, please first review the step-by-step process below.

There are also some helpful Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) beneath the appeal process.

Understand what an appeal involves

To make an appeal you’ll first need to complete an appeal form and provide information and evidence to support your case. You’ll find details on how to do this below.

You must make the appeal within 2 months from the date on the decision.

If the council does not reply to you within 2 months, then you can still appeal. In this case, you must appeal within 4 months from the date you first contacted the council.

If your case is accepted, you will then be expected to attend an appeal hearing to present your case to the Valuation Tribunal, who will make the final decision.

The appeal process currently takes about 9 months, from submission of an appeal form to final decision.

The Tribunal is happy to facilitate for you to observe a hearing prior to your own, please see link 5 and find a date and appeal that you are available for and email your request into (including hearing date and appeal number of the appeal you wish to observe and we will ensure you are added to the invitation list).

What issues can I appeal?

We can help you with the issues below:

  • You think you are entitled to CTR/CTS under the council’s scheme.
  • You think you are entitled to more CTR/CTS than you have been given under the council’s scheme.

We cannot hear appeals about the fairness of the council’s scheme. We can only decide if the council has applied their scheme correctly in your case.

Complete the appeal form

If you want to appeal, please complete an appeal form.

The form needs to be completed in one session (there is no option to save a part-completed form).

You will also need to attach a copy of the council’s decision to the appeal form.

When completing the appeal form, please be advised after thirty minutes of inactivity, you will be required to restart the form from the beginning as progress cannot be saved.

Appeal registration

We will register your appeal within 10 working days and send you a Notice of Receipt to confirm this has been done. Please read this carefully as it will contain directions confirming what you need to do next.

At this point in the process, we’ll also send you guidance booklets about the appeals process and how to prepare your evidence.

Prepare your evidence

Once your appeal has been registered both you and the council will have four weeks from the date of the notice to provide further evidence for the appeal. You must send any further evidence to the council and the Tribunal. After the deadline has passed a member of our Clerking Team will review the documentation received from both parties and confirm if the appeal can proceed to a hearing.

If the appeal can proceed to a hearing, we will list it and will aim to provide you with at least 6 weeks’ notice of your hearing date.

During this time, you will need to prepare a rebuttal statement in response to the council’s evidence. Please allow plenty of time to do this.

Attend the hearing

Appeals are decided by the Valuation Tribunal panel at the appeal hearing. At the current time, all hearings are conducted remotely using online/audio visual conferencing software.

The tribunal is impartial and independent. The tribunal will listen to both sides before making a decision.

During the hearing:

  • The panel will ask you and the council to present your cases.
  • You will be able to ask questions.
  • You may be asked questions.

We try to make the hearing as informal as we can, and we will try put everyone at ease. However, these are judicial proceedings, so there is some formality.

The decision

The panel will make its decision on the evidence and arguments, bearing in mind what the law (legislation and case law) allows.

Our decision is not normally given at the hearing.

We will send you a decision notice (with reasons) within 1 month of the hearing by your preferred method of communication.  If this period is likely to be exceeded, then the clerk to the hearing will contact you with information on when you can expect your decision.

Frequently asked questions

  • We cannot deal with housing benefit appeals. You should appeal this directly to your council.

  • For council tax appeals, the hearing is a free service.

  • No, the Tribunal cannot award costs. People making an appeal have to meet their own costs.

  • The appellant (and/or their representative), a council representative, and usually a panel of two (the senior member and a member), but sometimes a senior member will sit alone. A clerk will also be present.

  • Please click here to view our upcoming hearings.

    Next, please email with the hearing(s) you want to observe. A Tribunal Support Officer will respond to you with more information.

  • Yes, to the High Court, but only on a point of law. Please click here for more information.

  • To get a decision, you must appeal to the council first. The council have 2 months to reply to you with a decision.

    If the council does not reply to you within 2 months, then you can still appeal. You must appeal within 4 months from the date you first contacted the council.

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