Council Tax Exemption
Only full-time students are exempt from paying council tax, please read this information as there are certain things you may need to do to ensure you become and remain exempt.
How do I claim council tax exemption?
If you live in an area that is covered by Birmingham City Council, you can apply for council tax exemption by phone, Birmingham City Council now has a system in place whereby students from the University of Birmingham can simply call up to apply for council tax exemption.
Before calling, you should ensure that you have the following details to hand:
- The full address of your property
- The full name of each housemate
- The student ID numbers of all the students at the property
- Course start and end dates for each student, and whether this is full or part time study
The council will check the details you provide against a list that the University sends them before applying and discounts to your household.
You can call their Contact Centre on 0121 303 1113, please make a note of the name of the member of staff that you speak to at the Council.
You can also apply for council tax exemption by post: send your details to Birmingham City Council, Finance Department (Revenues), PO Box 4092, B4 7AD.
How will the Council know I'm a student?
The University of Birmingham sends an electronic data file to Birmingham City Council every week, which contains the details of all full-time students currently studying there. This is how the Council will verify the details you provide over the phone. If you study at any other University, you are advised to contact the Housing Services department for advice on how to apply for your Council Tax Exemption. When you receive your Exemption Certificate, please forward a copy to us for our records
It is essential that you apply for council tax exemption by calling the Council directly. This is what prompts the council to check the data file and apply the council tax exemption. Failure to do this will result in you receiving a bill for council tax.
Important – it is also very important that you keep your term-time address up-to-date on our system so that the information which you send to the council is correct. You can update your address details online using the my.bham student portal. This should be done whenever you change your address.
Who should phone the Council in a shared house?
This is for you to decide, but at least one person in the house should phone the Council directly, ensuring that you include the details of everyone living at the property. Failure to include the details of everyone living at the property may result in your receiving a bill.
What if I live with someone who is not a student?
Generally, the presence of one non-student renders the whole house liable for 75% council tax. How this is paid is up to the people in the house, but students don't have to pay. It's well worth sitting down with your housemates and discussing the options available to you. You will need to apply for this discount in the same way you would apply for an exemption, as detailed above.
Postgraduate Research (Writing up) students
As a research student who has progressed into the writing up period, you entitlement to council tax exemption can change. This is because once you have completed your research/ taught phase of your course, you no longer meet the criteria of being a full-time student for council tax purposes.
Birmingham City Council currently allows writing up students to claim council tax exemption for entire duration of their writing up stage. This may be different for other local authorities, so it is important you make contact with your local council for more information.
The council has sent me a bill – what can I do?
Contact the Council directly in the first instance on 0121 303 1113.
Send your details by post to Birmingham City Council, Finance Department (Revenues), PO Box 4092, B4 7AD.
*For more information, please click http://www.birmingham.gov.uk/ctdiscounts