This blog will answer the question “Do I have to pay council tax if I live with parents?” It covers the topics such as whose responsibility it is to pay the council tax in general, when there are earning and non-earning children living with the parents, and related topics. 

Do I have to pay council tax if I live with my parents?

No, you don’t have to pay council tax if you are a student, whether you are more than 18 years of age or less, whether you are living with your parents or not. Whether you have to pay council tax or not depends on your earning status, not on if you live with your parents or alone.

Who has to pay council tax

Generally, the following persons have to pay council tax:

  • Any person who is 18 years of age or over 18, and who owns or rents a home.
  • If only 1 person lives in a property they will be the liable person
  • The person who occupies a property is the person liable to pay council
  • When the property is an HMO, or it is empty, the owner of the property is liable to pay the council tax.
  • If there are more than one person living on a property, the person who is liable to pay council tax is determined by a system called the hierarchy of liability. The hierarchy goes from top to bottom. The topmost person is the one responsible for paying council tax, in whose absence, the next will be responsible and so on.

This hierarchy is as follows:

  1. First liability falls upon the resident owner-occupier who owns the freehold of all or any part of the property.
  1. In absence of one, the responsibility is that of the resident leaseholder of all or any part of the property, such as an owner-occupier who pays a ground rent.
  1. If there is no freeholder or leaseholder, council tax liability is that of the resident statutory tenant on an assured tenancy agreement, such as a council or private tenant.
  1. In absence of a tenant even, the liability is that of the resident who lives in the property, and is a licensee, that is, a person who is not a tenant but has permission to live there.
  1. If there is no licensee even, then any resident staying at the property, for example a squatter has to pay the council tax.
  1. As a last resort, if the property is not at all occupied by any resident, then the council tax liability falls upon the owner of the property who doesn’t live there

A full Council Tax bill is based on at least 2 adults living in a home. Spouses and partners who live together are jointly responsible for paying the bill.

You’ll usually get a 50% discount if no-one living in your home, including you, counts as an adult.

You will not have to pay any Council Tax if everyone in your home, including you, is a full-time student.

If you live with your parents

The concept of council tax assumes that there are at least two adults living in a property. It makes spouses and partners liable to pay the council tax bill. 

If you are not an adult, you don’t have to pay council tax for living with your parents. If you are a student, whether or not you are 18 years old, you are not counted as an adult for the purpose of council tax. You are ‘disregarded’ for council tax purposes.

In fact, if you are a student, either in full-time education or completing an apprenticeship while living with your single parent, he or she will get a 25% discount on their council tax bill. So, if you are not an adult, you do not have to pay council tax for living with your parents, nor do your parents have to pay extra tax.

Your single parent will continue to get the only adult discount of 25%, if you are working at the age 16 through 18, but not once you are in paid work after you turn 18. 

If you turn 18, but your single parent gets child benefit for you, they will still continue to get their 25% council tax discount.

Similar is the case if your parents get any kind of council tax reduction, they will continue to get it till the time you turn 18, and not after that.

However, between the ages of 18 to 25, if you are getting your own  income support, income-based jobseeker’s allowance, income-related employment and support allowance without the addition of a component or universal credit, your parents will continue to get any council tax reduction that they were already receiving.

There are some councils which provide council tax reduction for low income based on whether or not there are children living with their parents, and the number of children living with a couple. The eden district council has the council tax reduction chart on its website that has stated specific reduction rates when couples, or single parents live with 1, 2, 3 or 4 children.

Adult working child living with parents

If you are more than 18 years of age, and are employed in a paid job, you will be treated as an adult resident on the property. Living with both your earning parents, you will be counted as a third adult and added towards the council tax payment.

In such a condition, where you are a working adult living with your parents, you will have to pay council tax. However, you will not receive a separate council tax bill. The ‘liable person’ for your property will receive a joint council tax bill for your whole household, and you all will be jointly liable for council tax on the property.

If you move in with your parents

Your council needs to be informed if you move in to live with your parents. In order for your parents to avail any council tax exemption on account of their child or children living with them, the person liable to pay council tax needs to inform the local council of the development.

Conversely, if you have been living with your parents and your parents have been receiving a council tax reduction on account of that, they have to inform their local council if you move out to live alone.

Even when you are no longer a student, or you get a paid work, you need to inform your local council about the change because you will be counted as an adult from the time, and the council tax will be billed accordingly.

If in any situation, you fail to inform your local council or any recent developments of such living circumstances, the council might put a fine on you, or bill all of the less paid council tax together at the end of the year.

Conclusion 

This blog answered the question “Do I have to pay council tax if I live with parents?” It covered topics such as whose responsibility it is to pay council tax in general, when there are earning and non-earning children living with the parents, and related topics.

FAQs

 

Do adults living with parents pay council tax?

Council tax is paid only by one person called the ‘liable person’, but, for adults living together, the council tax bill is a joint liability. Any adult sufficiently able and not on low income, living with his or her parents are jointly and severally liable 

What happens to council tax when someone moves in?

If someone moves into a new property, or to a new council area, he or she has to inform the local council of the same, and check with the council tax payment and the band your property is in.

Can you live with your parents and not be a dependent?

Yes, you can live with your parents and not be a dependent if you are a working adult, and contributing towards council tax in effect of that.

Can a 17 year old get benefits?

From age 16 through 17, you can claim to get benefits, or tax credits, if you are low on income, sick, disabled, searching for employment, expecting a baby, or raising children or caring for another adult. The rules might vary slightly in details for different councils. It depends upon the individual councils.

At what age does Universal Credit Stop for a child?

Universal credit for a child stops after the child turn 16 years old, at the end of August he turns 16, of if the child is still living at home and pursuing a non-advanced course at school or college, or participating in some approved training, then the Universal credit ends after the child’s 19th birthday, at the end if the August after the child turns 19.

Can I claim myself if I still live with my parents?

This is a two-way concept. If you claim yourself, your parents cannot claim you, and vice versa. If your parents can claim you, then you cannot claim your own exemption. If you are a student under 24 years, for at least 5 months and have lived with your parents for more than half the year, and have not provided  more than half of your own support for the whole year, you can still be claimed by your parents.

Can I claim my 25 year old child as dependent?

You can only claim your 25 year old child as a dependent if he or she is permanently and totally disabled, or is suffering from a severe mental impairment.  Your child must meet the qualifying child test to be claimed as your dependent. To meet the qualifying child test, your child must be younger than you, and must either be younger than 19 years, or be a student younger than 24 years old at the end of the calendar year.

Citation 

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/universal-credit-and-your-family-quick-guide/universal-credit-further-information-for-families
https://www.irs.gov/faqs/filing-requirements-status-dependents/dependents/dependents-2
https://www.gov.uk/council-tax/who-has-to-pay
https://ttlc.intuit.com/community/taxes/discussion/if-i-m-working-full-time-but-living-at-home-can-i-claim-myself-as-a-dependent/00/44539
https://www.irs.gov/faqs/filing-requirements-status-dependents/dependents/dependents-2
https://www.citizensadvice.org.uk/housing/council-tax/council-tax/
https://www.aviva.co.uk/aviva-edit/your-life-articles/the-5-things-you-must-do-when-your-adult-child-moves-back-in/
https://www.northgate-nes.co.uk/pls/pwslive/f?p=CARPWS:HOME:12833271112331:INITIALISE::SESSION:APP_LA_CODE,APP_TEXT_LANGUAGE,APP_SRV_CODE,APP_ACCOUNT_TYPE:POWYS,ENG,CAR,CT&cs=3BwjTMsKoXkG8muwWngFFiH9ArtsBCHLthW7AgD7_25mxfqR1SRk7NQkPrbOaP-4zoAMKDIsUaXhwTewiiTBnfA
https://en.powys.gov.uk/article/5431/Council-Tax-You-move-within-Powys-but-someone-else-pays-bill
https://www.lbhf.gov.uk/council-tax/council-tax-who-has-pay
https://www.southampton.gov.uk/council-tax/information/who-pays-council-tax/
https://gov.wales/council-tax-discounts-and-reduction/living-alone
https://www.ageuk.org.uk/information-advice/money-legal/income-tax/ways-to-reduce-council-tax/
https://secure.manchester.gov.uk/info/500180/housing_benefit/4285/adults_non-dependants_who_live_with_you_may_affect_your_housing_benefit_and_council_tax_support
https://www.westminster.ac.uk/study/accommodation/private-rented-accommodation/who-pays-council-tax
https://www.birmingham.gov.uk/info/50094/housing_options/1230/staying_with_family
https://www.eden.gov.uk/council-tax-and-housing-benefit/council-tax-reduction/are-you-entitled-to-a-council-tax-reduction/

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John has 22 years of experience in financial services. This spans across financial research, financial services (As a qualified mortgage broker and underwriter), financial trading and sales at global investment banks. While working as a publishing research analyst, he covered European bank credit and advised institutional clients on investment strategies at both JP Morgan and Societe Generale. John has passed all three levels of the CFA (Chartered Financial Analyst) programme.

John has 22 years of experience in financial services. This spans across financial research, financial services (As a qualified mortgage broker and underwriter), financial trading and sales at global investment banks. While working as a publishing research analyst, he covered European bank credit and advised institutional clients on investment strategies at both JP Morgan and Societe Generale. John has passed all three levels of the CFA (Chartered Financial Analyst) programme.