Hardship Fund scheme details
Any council taxpayer named on the council tax account who is experiencing financial difficulties as a direct result the coronavirus
- The hardship payment is a one off payment of up to £250 to help applicants through the difficult period due to the coronavirus
- It is paid to assist with the payment of council tax taking into account how and why hardship has been experienced due to the coronavirus crisis, whether to reduce arrears or to help with paying any ongoing charge
- Each application will be considered on its own merits
- The amount of financial support given will not exceed the amount of the council tax owed.
- Any council tax support provided by this fund cannot be refunded but would be returned to the hardship fund
- If you already receive council tax support, you will automatically receive a further council tax reduction from the hardship fund of up to £150
- If two or more people pay council tax on a property, they cannot all receive help from this fund
- Hardship fund support can only be made for council tax owed for the 2020/21 financial year
- Support from the fund is discretionary. An applicant does not have a statutory right to support from this fund
Considerations when allocating money from the hardship fund
- Job loss (temporarily or permanently) as a result of the coronavirus
- Reduced income as a result of the coronavirus
- The amount of savings and if present, that of the partner
- Additional expenditure as a result of the coronavirus
- Vulnerable people living in the household
- Entitlement to other benefits, such as LCTS, Single Person Discount, Universal Credit
- If you have taken reasonable steps to maximise income and reduce expenditure
- The amount of money you and your household owes
Reviewing a decision
If you disagree with a decision, you may dispute it. You must request a review in writing/email to the Benefit Services within one calendar month of the written decision.
The decision will be reviewed by an independent officer who was not involved in the original decision. When considering the review, the officer will consider any further evidence supplied. You will then be notified of the review decision as soon as possible after it has been made.
The Benefit Service will seek to recover any support found to be overpaid as a result of misrepresentation or failure to disclose a material fact, either fraudulently or otherwise.
We are unlikely to seek to recover any overpaid support if it was caused by an official error, unless it is reasonable to expect you to know that you were being overpaid at the time.
We are committed to the fight against fraud in all its forms. Anyone who tries to fraudulently claim support falsely declaring their circumstances, or providing a false statement of evidence in support of their application, may have committed an offence. Where it is suspected that such a fraud may have occurred, the matter will be investigated as appropriate and this may lead to criminal proceedings.