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Who should pay Council Tax?

Normally the person living in the property is responsible for paying Council Tax, if it is their sole or main residence and they are over 18 years of age.

If more then one person lives in the property then the person liable to pay the tax on any day is the one who comes first out of the following:

  • the freeholder
  • the leaseholder
  • the tenant
  • the licensee
  • other resident.

The owner

'The owner' is defined as the person entitled to possession, this includes leaseholders. The owner is only liable where no one has their sole or main residence in the property (the property is empty) or as provided by the Council Tax (Liability of Owners) Regulations 1992 the owner rather then the occupier is liable in the following cases:

  • Nursing homes and other similar homes (class A)
  • Houses of religious communities (class B)
  • Houses in multiple occupation (class C)
  • Residences of staff who live in houses occasionally occupied by an employer (class D)
  • Residences of ministers of religion (class E)
  • Accommodation provided for occupation by asylum seekers (class F)

If two or more people have an identical interest, i.e. they are joint owners, then they are each jointly liable and the charge is collectable from either person. Men and women who are married or living together as husband and wife are also jointly liable.