Energy rebate

If you live in a property in council tax bands A to D, you are likely to receive a £150 energy rebate from the Government to help with the increased cost of energy bills.

Update 16 August 2022

Tamworth Borough Council have successfully processed more than £4.3 million in energy rebates to eligible Tamworth households, either straight into bank accounts for those who pay council tax by direct debit, or with a cash payment collected from the Post Office.

For those residents who requested the payment as a credit to their council tax account, all requests will be processed after the deadline we set of the end August.

There are a small number of queries we’re still working through, and we aim to sort those as soon as possible.

The government have also given Tamworth Borough Council £133,050 to support vulnerable households who may not qualify for the £150 energy rebate. We’re finalising this scheme now and will have the funds distributed by the Government’s deadline of the 30 November 2022.

Many thanks for your patience

Please click on a question to jump to that section of the page.

What is the Energy Rebate?
Who is eligible to receive the rebate?
Not sure of your council tax band?
What if my household isn’t eligible?
How will my household get its £150 energy rebate?
If you don’t currently pay by Direct Debit
What happens if someone else pays my council tax for me?
Can I stop my bank from using the rebate to pay off an overdrawn account?
What happens if the council tax band is changed or is incorrect?
Is the rebate taxable?
How will we deal with fraud and error?
What else is on offer to support households with their energy bills?
Where can I find further information?

 

What is the Energy Rebate?

As countries around the world come out of Covid-19 lockdowns, surging demand for energy has meant energy prices have increased.

Over the past year, the price of gas alone has quadrupled. Whilst the problem is global, the effect is being felt by millions of households here in the UK. The Government has listened to these concerns and it has acted.

Recently, the Government announced that around 20 million households in England in council tax bands A-D will get a £150 energy rebate from April. The rebate will not need to be repaid. This is completely separate from the £200 Energy Bills Support Scheme announced at the same time which is not administered by the council. See “What else is on offer to support households with their energy bills?” below for further information.

The council has been allocated a further £133,050 to create a Discretionary Scheme for those who do not qualify for the mandatory scheme.

Due to the limited funding the discretionary scheme we will require additional time to consider the  options with regard to how the Discretionary Scheme may assist financially vulnerable customers and will provide an update here when available.

Please do not call us to enquire about this at this time as we do not have any further information. We will contact residents directly should they be required to take any action to secure this payment.

Who is eligible to receive the rebate?

Most households in council tax bands A-D, and those in band E who are eligible for the Disabled Band reduction, will receive the £150 council tax energy rebate. This means 4 out of 5 households in England will benefit, including around 95% of rented properties.

Please note: second homes or empty properties will not benefit.

You must be the responsible person at 1 April 2022 and meet ALL of the following criteria:

  • Be in Council Tax Bands A-D. This includes property that is valued in band E but has an alternative valuation band of band D, because of the disabled band reduction scheme
  • Be someone’s sole or main residence
  • Be a chargeable dwelling, or in exemption classes N, S, U or W*; and
  • Be the person who is liable to pay the council tax (or would be were the property not exempt) who is not a local authority, a corporate body or other body such as a housing association, the government or governmental body.

 * Exemption Class

 Description

 Class N

Properties occupied solely by students, school or college leavers or non-British spouses of students may be eligible for an exemption.

 Class S

 Properties occupied only by a person or persons aged under 18

 Class U

 Properties occupied solely by persons who are severely mentally impaired

 Class W

 Annexes or self-contained parts of a property which are occupied by dependant relatives of the occupants of the main property

Not sure of your council tax band?

Find out your council tax band at https://www.gov.uk/council-tax-bands

Alternatively, you can find your council tax band on your council tax bill.

Who is not eligible

The following properties are NOT eligible:

  • A property that has no permanent resident and is someone’s second home will not be eligible.
  • An unoccupied property (for the purposes of calculating council tax) will not be eligible.
  • A property exempt from council tax, other than the classes mentioned above.
  • A local authority, a corporate body or other body such as a housing association, the government or governmental body who is liable to pay the council tax

Please note: This grant payment is intended to support all household members. If it is found that you are not the liable person and the rebate has been paid in error the council will seek to recover this money.

What if my household isn’t eligible?

Tamworth Borough Council has received £133,050 to provide support to vulnerable households who may not qualify for the £150 council tax rebate.

16/08/2022: We’re finalising this scheme now and will have the funds distributed by the Government’s deadline of the 30 November 2022.

How will my household get its £150 energy rebate?

Where the Council holds bank details as you are the liable person for council tax and pay by Direct Debit (DD), the council will make payment as soon as possible into that bank account after we have received your first 2022/23 instalment from April onwards. If you are a Direct Debit payer who does not currently pay council tax (for example you receive 100% council tax support) further checks may be made.

Where a household has more than one person jointly responsible for council tax, payment will be made into the account where the LIVE Direct Debit is received from.           

If you don’t currently pay by Direct Debit

Sign up for Direct Debit to get your energy rebate paid directly to your bank account

If you don’t already pay by Direct Debit, you might want to sign up. This will make sure the rebate is paid to you automatically:

Please provide details to counciltax@tamworth.gov.uk

Please note: we are aiming to send rebates by the end of May to all accounts with a valid up to date direct debit payment.

If you don’t want to sign up for Direct Debit

For all other payees, (including Bands A to E who receive disabled relief therefore do not have to pay council tax) you will receive a bar coded letter from the Post Office which you should take with the necessary identification in order to redeem your £150 payment.

By redeeming your payment you will be confirming you are entitled to it as outlined above, if it is found that you are not entitled to payment and the rebate has been paid in error the council will seek to recover this money.

We are required to undertake pre-payment checks prior to payment of any grant which is not awarded to a live Direct Debit holder.

Payments will be made between April 2022 and 30 September 2022 for the main scheme and April 2022 to 30 November 2022 for the Discretionary scheme.

What happens if someone else pays my council tax for me?

The Council are currently reviewing the options if your council tax is paid by Direct Debit by someone else, for example a family member.

Can I stop my bank from using the rebate to pay off an overdrawn account?

Yes, you can. Instead of the rebate being taken by your bank to pay off an unarranged overdraft you may have, you can tell them how you would prefer the money to be used. This might be to pay for phone or energy bills, for example.

All you have to do is send them a letter telling them that the rebate for £150 will be credited to your account, and how you would like it to be spent by detailing upcoming transactions. This process is called 'First Right of Appropriation'.

Download a sample 'First Right of Appropriation' letter from the National Debtline website.

What happens if the council tax band is changed or is incorrect?

Where the property band recorded on a valuation list is amended retrospectively to 1 April 2022, for example as a result of a successful appeal made to the Valuation Office Agency (VOA) that concluded after this date, councils are not required to pay or clawback payments. The exception is where a property is a new build and awaiting an official banding from the VOA. In these cases, eligibility will be determined based on the official band subsequently allocated by the VOA, where this has an effective date before or on 1 April 2022.

Is the rebate taxable?

This payment is not taxable.

How will we deal with fraud and error?

The Government will not accept deliberate manipulation and fraud, and any person caught falsifying their records to gain money will face prosecution and any funding issued will be subject to claw back, as may any grants paid in error.

The council will carry out pre-payment checks on all rebates.

How do I report a scam?

The energy rebate creates an opportunity for malicious actors to pose as government departments, local authorities or council tax rebate services in order to collect personal or banking information from citizens.

Cyber criminals use fake messages as bait to lure you into clicking on the links within their scam email or text message, or to give away sensitive information (such as bank details).

These messages may look like the real thing but are malicious. Once clicked, you may be sent to an unsecure and unsafe website which could download viruses onto your computer, or steal your passwords.

If you think you may have been the victim of fraud or cybercrime and incurred a financial loss or have been hacked as a result of responding to a phishing message, you should report this to Action Fraud:

Report fraud on the Action Fraud website.

What else is on offer to support households with their energy bills?

Energy bills

All energy companies will automatically take £200 off domestic electricity bills in October 2022, and spread it over future bills.

The £200 reduction will help people manage the increase in energy bills by spreading the increased costs over a few years, so they are more manageable for households. It will be automatically recovered from people’s bills in equal instalments over 5 years, beginning in 2023, when global wholesale gas prices are expected to come down.

This is not a debt, no interest is charged and no credit ratings are affected.

Warm Home Discount Scheme

The Warm Home Discount will be expanded, so nearly 3 million low-income households will benefit from a £150 discount.

Read more about the Warm Home Discount Scheme on GOV.UK.

Where can I find further information?

The Government has produced various factsheets regarding energy bills and cost of living:

GOV.UK - Energy bills and the cost of living - factsheets