Council Tax Support is a scheme run by local councils, not the government.
We make decisions about Council Tax Support which gives you help with Council Tax.
Our decisions include things like:
- Whether you can get any Council Tax Support
- How much you can get
- How we pay it
- What happens if we pay too much
We tell you our decision in a letter.
If you do not understand or agree with our decision, you can:
Decision letters can sometimes be confusing and can cover different awards such as Housing Benefit, Council Tax Support and less often Council Tax Benefit.
You can ask us to explain the decision more fully. We call this a statement of reasons request.
To ask for this you can either:
- Contact us online
- Contact us by phone on 0300 1234 121
- Write to us at The Benefit Assessment team, PO BOX 676, Threemilestone, Truro, TR1 9EQ, to ask us to explain our decision. We will reply to this request in writing and we aim to reply within 14 calendar days. You must sign the request yourself
If you want us to look at our decision again, we call this a reconsideration request.
You must ask us in writing if you want us to change our decision.
There is no time limit for you to ask us to change our decision, but we must reply to you within two months.
If we miss this deadline, you can then appeal to the Valuation Tribunal Service. See below for more information on appeals.
To ask us to do this you can:
- Contact us online
- Complete the form which is sent to you with our decision
- Write to the Benefit Assessment team, PO Box 676, Threemilestone, Truro, TR1 9EQ
What do I need to include in my request?
Your form or letter should:
- Make it clear which decision you mean. Include the date of our decision letter and the claim reference.
- Say clearly why you think we are wrong
- Give any further information or evidence you think we haven't already got
If we are unable to change the decision we will tell you.
You can then choose to appeal against the decision with the Valuation Tribunal. They are an independent body who are not linked to the Council.
You can only appeal to the Valuation Tribunal Service after you have written to us and:
- If we have looked at our decision again, and you are still unhappy with it. You must contact the Valuation Tribunal Service within two months of the date of our reply.
- If you have asked us to look at our decision again, but you have not heard from us, and it is two months since you wrote to us.
What you can appeal to the Valuation Tribunal Service about?
You can appeal to them about:
- Whether you are entitled to Council Tax Support (they may call it Council Tax Reduction).
- How much Council Tax Support we have awarded you under Cornwall Councils local government scheme.
You can’t appeal to the Valuation Tribunal about the rules we have put into our local government scheme. View the rules for the scheme.
Also you can’t appeal to the Valuation Tribunal about Housing Benefit or Council Tax Benefit.
How to appeal to the Valuation Tribunal
You can appeal to the Valuation Tribunal by:
The Valuation Tribunal contact details are:
- Address: 3rd Floor, Crossgate House, Wood Street, Doncaster DN1 3LL
- Telephone number: 0300 123 2035
- Email address: firstname.lastname@example.org
Council Tax Benefit was a way of getting help with your Council Tax bill, before April 2013, if you had a low income.
In April 2013 Council Tax Benefit was replaced by a local government scheme called Council Tax Support.
We may make a decision on your benefit which covers a period before April 2013. If we do this and it affects any Council Tax Benefit you received you can still:
- ask us (the Benefits Assessment team) to explain our decision more fully
- ask us to change our decision
We follow this same process for both Council Tax Support and Council Tax Benefit decisions.
However if you want to appeal against a Council Tax Benefit decision this is treated differently. You have a month from the date the decision was made to appeal. You can make a request after a month, but this would be a late request. For us to look at our decision again, you will need to tell us why it's late.
If we are unable to change the decision your case will be sent to the Tribunal Service where a decision will be made. The Tribunal Service is an independent organisation and not linked to the Council.