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Occupied Property Exemptions
Details of exemptions which can apply even though the property is occupied as someone's main residence.
Some properties may be exempt from council tax even though they are furnished and occupied. Please see below for details of the relevant criteria:
Class M (Student Halls of Residence)
Halls of residence provided predominantly for the accommodation of students are exempt. The accommodation must be owned or managed by a prescribed educational establishment, or by a body established for charitable purposes only, or is subject to an agreement enabling such an establishment to nominate the majority of student residents.
Class N (Dwellings occupied entirely by students or mixture of students and the Severely Mentally Impaired)
Any dwelling which is occupied only by students, school or college leavers or by certain spouses or dependants of students. The exemption also applies if the qualifying occupiers only occupy the property as their term time address.
Class O (Armed Forces accommodation)
Living accommodation for UK armed forces owned by the Secretary of State for Defence is exempt whether occupied or not. This includes barracks and other accommodation on military bases, together with married quarters and any other dwellings, wherever located, provided the accommodation is held for the purposes of forces accommodation.
Class P (Dwellings occupied by members and dependants of visiting forces)
A dwelling is exempt from council tax under this class if any person who would otherwise have been liable has a relevant association with a visiting force from a country to which the Visiting Forces Act 1952 applies.
Class S (Dwelling occupied only by persons under 18 years of age)
Properties occupied only by a person or persons aged under 18 years are exempt from council tax until such time as either one of the residents reaches the age of 18 or a new occupier aged 18 or more moves into the property (subject to any discount entitlement).
Class U (Dwellings occupied entirely by persons who are Severely Mentally Impaired)
A dwelling is exempt if it is occupied only
A 'relevant person' for this exemption is defined as anyone who would qualify for the exemption as a student in exempt Class N. This prevents the anomaly that if a student moved into the dwelling of a severely mentally impaired person they would lose an exemption, but if either of these persons occupied the property on their own they would be exempt.
Class V (Dwellings occupied by persons who are diplomats etc)
A dwelling is exempt under this class if it is the main residence in the United Kingdom of at least one person on whom privileges and immunities are conferred by the Diplomatic Privileges Act 1964, the Commonwealth Secretarial Act 1966, the Consular Relations Act 1968 or the Commonwealth Countries and Republic of Ireland (Immunities and Privileges) Order 1985.
The person must not be a British subject, a British citizen, a British Dependent Territories citizen, a British National (Overseas) or a British Overseas citizen, a British protected person or a permanent resident in the United Kingdom, and must be a person who would have been liable for council tax were it not for this exemption. If there is a resident in the property with a superior interest in the property to that of the qualifying person, according to the hierarchy of liability, then this exemption will not apply. Reference should then be made to the disregard for persons with diplomatic privilege or immunity.
Class W (Occupied annexes not capable of being separately let)
A dwelling is exempt if it forms part of a single property including at least one other dwelling and is the sole or main residence of a dependant relative of a person who is resident in that other dwelling (or one of those other dwellings).
A 'relative' is defined as a person who is a spouse, parent, grandparent, child, grandchild, brother, sister, uncle, aunt, nephew, niece or the parent or child of such a person. The legislation also allows a relationship by marriage to be treated as a relationship by blood and a relationship between a man and a woman living together as husband and wife to be treated as a relationship by marriage.
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