Council Tax

Please note, it is your Council’s decision as to whether they exempt you from Council Tax.

Under Council Tax legislation you are required to inform your local authority Council Tax Office if you cease to be eligible for a discount or exemption.

What is Council Tax?

Council Tax is a property based tax which is payable to local councils to help fund the cost of services that they provide such as the police and fire service. Please refer to your local Council Tax Office for rules relating to Council Tax exemptions or to the Scottish Executive Council Tax guide for students on their website.

If you have any questions regarding your student record please contact Student Services Hub.

Am I Eligible for Council Tax Exemption?

Please note, it is your Council’s decision as to whether they exempt you from Council Tax.

Under Council Tax legislation you are required to inform your local authority Council Tax Office if you cease to be eligible for a discount or exemption.

I am a full time student

Most full time students are normally eligible for Council Tax exemption. In order to satisfy the 'full time' criteria for Council Tax exemption you must:

be required to attend for a period of at least 24 weeks in the academic year and undertake on average at least 21 hours of study, tuition or work experience in each of these weeks

I am a part time student, but studying 40 credits in Autumn and 40 credits in Spring, can I claim exemption?

No.  Though the credit load in Autumn equates to 26 hours a week the credit load in Spring only equates to 20 hours and therefore you would not be studying 21 hours per week for at least 24 weeks in the academic year.

I am a part time student registered for under 40 credits this semester

You would not be exempt for Council Tax as you would not be studying a minimum of 21 hours per week for at least 24 weeks.

Finished or taking a break from your studies

Please note, it is your Council’s decision as to whether they exempt you from Council Tax.

Under Council Tax legislation you are required to inform your local authority Council Tax Office if you cease to be eligible for a discount or exemption.

I am thinking of taking an approved interruption from my studies, will I still have to pay Council Tax?

If the University has agreed that you can take an approved interruption from your studies, and it has been agreed that you can return at a later date, you may not be eligible for Council Tax exemption for the duration of your absence.  You will need to request a Certificate of Enrolment from the Student Administration office as proof of your absence.

What happens if I withdraw from my programme of study?

If you withdraw from your programme of study then you will not be classed as a full time student for Council Tax purposes.  Under Council Tax legislation you are required to inform your local authority Council Tax Office if you cease to be eligible for a discount or exemption.

My programme of study at the University is finished, do I need to pay?

You will become liable to pay Council Tax from the date your programme ends as recorded on your University record.

Am I covered up to my graduation date?

No, you are only covered up to the end date of your course.

Am I covered up to the end date on my student ID card?

No, you are covered only up to the end date of your course. The date on your ID card may include an additional period of time to allow for cases whereby a student may require an extension or has to re-sit examinations.

If you have any questions regarding your student record please contact the Student Services Hub

Council tax areas local to the University

This information is for students who fall under the following councils:

Each October and February, we will submit a list to these councils of all full time, enrolled students (as defined by Council Tax Legislation) with either a home or a semester address that falls within their address bracket. It is therefore imperative that you keep your address and enrolment details up to date.

Part time students are not included in these reports and should refer to our Council Tax Exemption for Part Time Students web page.

If you have any questions regarding your student record please contact the Student Services Hub.

Council Tax for Research Students

I am a full time student - can I get exemption?

As a full time student you will be engaged with your studies for over 21 hours a week for at least 24 weeks of the year. Therefore you can apply for exemption for Council Tax for your period of full time study. To apply for this exemption, complete the 'Council Tax Exemption' form available from your local council and pass the form to Student Administration to validate with the University stamp. This form should then be passed to your council.

I am a part time student - can I get exemption?

No, exemption is only available for students enrolled as full time.

I am a research student in my writing up period - can I get exemption?

If you are a full time registered research student in your writing up year you may qualify for exemption for Council Tax if you meet the criteria outlined below:

are in your first 12 months of writing up only and you were full time before entering the writing up stage and you are normally required to undertake a period of study of at least 21 hours a week and are continuing to study/work towards your degree for at least 24 weeks, from the start date of the writing up period and you are not employed full time

If you meet the above criteria then you should complete the 'Council tax discount in PhD write up' form which should be signed by your Lead Supervisor before it is submitted to Student Administration.

Student Administration will only certify those research students who meet the above criteria and have a signed ‘Application for Council Tax Exemption’ form. Once the form has been submitted to Student Administration staff will then use this information for certifying and completing your Council Tax exemption form. It is then the Council’s decision as to whether they exempt you from Council Tax.

What if my Principal Supervisor will not sign the form and is unable to confirm that I meet the criteria for exemption?

If your supervisor is unable to confirm that you meet the criteria then they will not be in a position to sign the form and you will not be eligible for exemption.

I am a research student whose writing up period has been extended - can I apply for exemption?

No, the exemption is only for the first 12 months of the writing up period.

I have submitted my thesis early and within the first 24 weeks can I still claim exemption?

No, as the period of engagement on your degree should be for at least 24 weeks you would not qualify.

 

If you have any questions regarding your student record please contact Student Administration.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I ask my School to complete my exemption form?

No, your council tax exemption request should be directed to Student Services Hub in 2z Cottrell Building.

I live in University Accommodation - do I need to pay?

If you live in a University hall of residence you do not have to pay Council Tax and you will not need to complete an exemption certificate.

I am an international student - am I exempt?

The UK Council for International Student Affairs (UKCISA) have produced an information guide for international students which international and study abroad students, may find useful.

Can my house mate collect my Council Tax Form/Certificate of Enrolment?

Due to the personal data that is disclosed on a Certificate of Enrolment and on a Council Tax Exemption Form, requests by third parties can only be issued if the student named in the certificate has given his/her written consent.  Third parties who collect a certificate should bring proof of consent with them.

 

If you have any questions regarding your student record please contact Student Services Hub.

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