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Council Tax Reduction - how your income is worked out if you are treated as a pensioner

This advice applies to Scotland

If you or your partner has reached State Pension age

If you or your partner has reached State Pension age, the pension age Council Tax Reduction (CTR) rules usually apply. You can find your State Pension age on GOV.UK.

Even if you have reached State Pension age, the working age CTR rules will apply if you or your partner get:

  • Universal Credit
  • income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance (JSA)
  • income-related Employment and Support Allowance (ESA)
  • Income Support.

If you’re part of a couple and only one of you has reached State Pension age, for your application to be assessed under the pension age rules, the person who has reached State Pension age should apply for CTR.

If the pension age rules apply for CTR calculations there are special rules about how your income is treated when calculating CTR.

The rules depend on whether you or your partner:

The rules about calculating your income for CTR are complicated.

You can use an online benefits calculator to check how much CTR you might be entitled to. You can find an online benefits calculators on GOV.UK.

To find out more about CTR, contact your local council. Your local council website might have a tool that you can use to calculate how much CTR you can get. You can find your council’s contact details on mygov.scot.

If you get the guarantee part of pension credit

Your income is ignored and you will be entitled to the maximum CTR if you or your partner get:

  • the guarantee part of pension credit
  • both the guarantee part and the savings part

There might be a deduction for any non-dependants who live in your household. 

If you get the savings part of pension credit but not the guarantee part

If you or your partner get the savings part of pension credit but not the guarantee credit, the Pension Service will need to give your local council the figure for your income that they used to calculate your savings credit.

The local council uses this figure to begin to work out how much CTR you are entitled to, but some adjustments will have to be made to the figures.

If you don't get pension credit

If neither you nor your partner gets pension credit, the local council will need to work out your income as a weekly amount to see if you are entitled to CTR and, if you are, how much CTR you are entitled to.

Your income includes your partner's income.

If you are claiming Universal Credit (UC), your local council should use the UC maximum amount for your applicable amount. Find out more about the Universal Credit maximum amount.

If you don’t get UC, your income is worked out in a similar way to someone who is not treated as a pensioner.

If your income is the same as, or less than, the amount the government says you need to live on (called your applicable amount) you will receive maximum CTR, but there might be a deduction for any non-dependants. 

If your income is more than your applicable amount:

Step 1: Work out the difference between your applicable amount and your income.

Step 2: Work out what 20% of the difference figure at step 1 is

Step 3: Take this 20% amount from your maximum CTR less any deduction for non-dependants. The result is the amount of CTR you are entitled to.

Water and sewerage charges

Don’t forget that you might still have to pay water and sewerage charges, collected with your council tax. Read more about help paying for water and sewerage.

Other useful information

More information about pension credit.

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