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Council Tax Reduction - temporary absence from home

This advice applies to Scotland

You may be able to continue to receive a Council Tax Reduction (CTR) during a temporary absence from home. You need to tell the local council about the change in your circumstances.

If you are away from Great Britain

There are special rules about being absent from Great Britain but still being eligible for a CTR. Read more about absence from Great Britain and getting a CTR.

If you're away for less than 13 weeks

If you are temporarily away from home, you can keep getting a CTR for up to 13 weeks if you:

  • intend to return home
  • are not letting or sub-letting the part of the home in which you usually live while you're away
  • are unlikely to be away for more than 13 weeks.

You can be away from home for up to 13 weeks, then return home (for a period, which may be brief), then be away for a further period up to 13 weeks, without affecting your CTR entitlement. Each return home essentially resets the clock.  

If you're away for less than 52 weeks

You could keep getting a CTR for up to 52 weeks if your absence is unlikely to be longer than 52 weeks and you intend to return home.

You can keep getting CTR for up to 52 weeks if you’re:

  • on an approved training course
  • a student
  • a remand prisoner awaiting trial or sentence
  • living in a bail hostel or away from home as a condition of bail 
  • a patient in a hospital or similar institution
  • staying with your partner or dependent child who’s getting medical treatment or recovering in hospital 
  • receiving medical care, other than in residential accommodation. There are special rules if you leave Great Britain temporarily
  • providing medically approved care for someone
  • caring for a child whose parent or guardian is away receiving medical treatment
  • in a residential care home, other than on a trial basis
  • away from home because of fear of violence.

You must not let or sublet the part of your home in which you usually live while you're away.

If you're in a care home

If you're in a residential care home, you can still get a CTR on your own home for up to 13 weeks if you:

  • haven’t been away from home for more than 52 weeks
  • are in the residential care home for a trial period to see if it suits your needs
  • intend to return home if the residential care home doesn’t suit you.

You must not let or sublet the part of the home in which you usually live while you're away.

Other circumstances

If you are getting a CTR and are away from home but you do not satisfy any of the conditions above for continuing to get a reduction, your partner, or someone else in your home may be able to apply for a CTR.

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