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People in prison / detention - council tax discount

Where people in prison / detention are not counted (disregarded) when calculating council tax.

Usually people in prison or in some other form of detention are no longer solely or mainly resident in a dwelling and are ignored for the purposes of a discount. Dwellings left empty by someone in detention are exempt from council tax. However, where the period of detention is for such a short period, the person is still considered to mainly occupy the dwelling and a disregard applies where the person is:

  • detained under deportation provisions of the Immigration Act 1971
  • detained in a prison, a hospital or other place by a court
  • detained under the Mental Health Act 1983 (1984 Scotland)
  • imprisoned, detained or in custody (but not in custody under open arrest for the purposes of the Queen's Regulations) for more than 48 hours under the Army Act 1955, Air force Act 1955, or the Naval Discipline Act 1957.

People in police custody before their first court appearance, or detained for non-payment of council tax or non-payment of a fine are not treated as being detained for discount purposes.


To apply for an in prison / detention council tax discount, download and complete the form below:

Icon for pdf Prisoners and people in detention council tax discount form (PDF, 158.9kb)


Contact us
Council tax
03000 26 4000
Our address is:
  • Revenues and Benefits
  • PO Box 238
  • Stanley
  • County Durham
  • United Kingdom
  • DH8 1FP
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