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Money off council tax for people with a severe mental impairment


If you have been diagnosed by your doctor as suffering from a condition or illness that is classed as a severe mental impairment or care for someone who does, you may be entitled to receive a reduction or exemption on your council tax. If you are suffering from a severe mental impairment and live alone, your home is exempt.

If you're currently struggling to pay your bills, please see our financial support during Coronavirus outbreak information.

You are considered to be severely mentally impaired if you have a severe impairment of intelligence and social functioning (however caused) which appears to be permanent, such as Alzheimer's.

It is your right to claim this discount or exemption. Claiming this discount does not adversely affect any eligibility for any other welfare benefits.

Qualifying Criteria

To qualify for this council tax discount the following conditions must be met.

The person must have been medically certified by a doctor confirming the severely mentally impaired condition. A doctor may diagnose someone because they have dementia, Parkinson's, severe learning disabilities or have had a stroke. However, not everyone with one of these conditions will be eligible for this council tax discount as they must also be entitled to, but not necessarily receiving, any of the following benefits:

  • Incapacity Benefit or Employment and Support Allowance
  • Working Tax Credit including a disability element
  • Attendance Allowance
  • Un-Employability Supplement Allowance
  • Severe Disablement Allowance
  • Constant Attendance Allowance
  • Disability Living Allowance (high or middle rate care component) or the daily living component of Personal Independence Payment.
  • Income Support which includes a Disability Premium
  • Universal Credit which includes an amount in respect of having limited capability for work or work-related activity
  • Armed Forces Independence Payment 
  • An increase in the rate of Disablement Pension (due to constant attendance being needed)
  • Job Seekers Allowance including a Disability Premium.

How to apply

To apply for a severe mental impairment council tax discount, download and complete the  Icon for pdf People with severe mental impairment council tax discount form (PDF, 502.4kb)  or contact us to request a form be posted to you.

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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