To apply for any exemption you will need to log in to MySouthend to complete the Discount, Disregard and Exemption form

If you are no longer entitled to an exemption you will need to log in to MySouthend to complete the Cancel a Discount/Exemption form


Please note: applying for a discount or exemption that you are not entitled to, or failing to notify the Council within 21 days of any change in circumstance that effects your entitlement will result in a penalty of up to £280 being issued.

Please see our Council Tax Penalties page for further information on penalties.

Empty and unfurnished annexe, but unable to be let separately due to planning restrictions 

An annexe is part of a single property but is separately banded for Council Tax. 

If an annexe is unoccupied and unfurnished, and it cannot be rented out separately to the main part of the property due to planning restrictions, a 100% exemption is available for as long as the annexe remains unoccupied and unfurnished.

Annexe occupied by a dependent relative 

If the annexe of a main property is occupied by a dependent relative of the occupier of the main property, a 100% exemption is available. The dependent relative must be aged 65 or more, or severely mentally impaired or substantially and permanently disabled.  


An unoccupied property that is owned or leased by a registered charity qualifies for an exemption for 6 months from the date the property was last occupied (regardless of whether there is any furniture in the property).

Awaiting Probate

If the owner of a property passes away leaving the property unoccupied, an exemption can be awarded until probate or letters of administration are granted. A further exemption for 6 months is available after probate has been granted.

Unoccupied because occupation is prohibited by law

If you are not allowed to live in a property because occupation is prohibited by law then the property is exempt from Council Tax until the property can be occupied again.

To apply for this exemption please tell us why a Court has forbidden your property to be occupied.

Unoccupied and waiting to be occupied by a minister of religion

If a property is unoccupied and held available for occupation by a minister of (any) religion, for example a vicarage, then an exemption can be awarded to the property.

Unoccupied following repossession by mortgagee

If a property is repossessed then the mortgage provider becomes liable for Council Tax from the date of repossession. The mortgage provider is entitled to an exemption from Council Tax from the date of repossession until the property is sold or re-let.

Unoccupied because the person liable for the Council Tax is receiving care elsewhere, or is providing care elsewhere

There are two different exemptions available depending on whether the person is receiving care on a permanent basis in a hospital, nursing home or residential home, or they are permanently receiving care but somewhere other than these.

A different exemption is available for a property left unoccupied because the person liable for the Council Tax is providing long term care on a continuous basis elsewhere.

Unoccupied because the person liable for the Council Tax is detained in prison or hospital

An exemption is available if a property is left unoccupied because the person is detained in prison or hospital by order of a Court (except for the non-payment of Council Tax or fines).

Student Accommodation

Halls of residence, properties occupied only by students, and properties left empty by full time students are exempt from Council Tax. Full time students for Council Tax purposes include those studying under the Open University and certain other home based study programmes, if the course meets the other requirements needed to qualify.

Occupied solely by persons who are severely mentally impaired

If all of the adults living in a property (who would otherwise be liable for the Council Tax) qualify as severely mentally impaired, the property can be exempt from Council Tax. This exemption still applies if qualifying full time students also live in the property.

To qualify for this exemption all the adults in the property must have a severe impairment of intelligence and social functioning which appears to be permanent. A form will need to be filled in by each applicant’s G.P and each person must be receiving one of the following benefits:

  • Incapacity Benefit
  • Employment Support Allowance (Support Component)
  • Attendance Allowance (if over 65 years old)
  • Severe Disablement Allowance
  • Disability Living Allowance (care component, middle or higher rate)
  • Disability Working Allowance (under section 129 of the Social Security Contributions and Benefits Act 1992)
  • an increase in Disablement Pension for constant attendance
  • an unemployability allowance payable with industrial injuries or war disablement pensions
  • Income Support that includes a disability premium on grounds which include incapacity for work

You can download a guidance leaflet for GPs on Council Tax disregards and exemptions for people who are severely mentally impaired.

Please use the Discounts, Disregards and Exemptions online form, but we will then need to send you a form for your doctor to complete and we will ask you for evidence of the benefits received.

Occupied solely by persons under the age of 18

If the only residents of a property are all under the age of 18 then an exemption is awarded. People under 18 cannot be named on a Council Tax demand so in this instance the Council Tax demand confirming the exemption had been awarded would be issued to the owner/landlord of the property.

To apply for this exemption proof of age must be provided for each resident.

MOD barracks and married quarters

Ministry of Defence barracks and married quarters for service personnel do not pay Council Tax. Instead their occupants contribute to the cost of the local services through a special arrangement.

To apply for any of these exemptions please complete the Discounts, Disregards and Exemptions online form.

Page last updated: 26/10/2018