Energy Bill Rebate
£150 Support for Energy Prices
Please do not try to apply for the rebate unless you have received a letter from us. The letter contains information you will need to be able to apply.
This page was last updated on 9 May 2022. No further updates are available.
9 May 2022 update
We will be issuing the £150 Energy Rebate in three phases.
Phase 1 – from 11 May 2022 – we will be paying the rebate to Christchurch residents who pay their Council Tax by Direct Debit, and inviting (by letter) the rest of Christchurch who pay by another method or haven’t made a Direct Debit payment yet, to apply for the rebate.
Phase 2 – from 18 May 2022 – we will be paying the rebate to Poole residents who pay their Council Tax by Direct Debit, and inviting (by letter) the rest of Poole who pay by another method or haven’t made a Direct Debit payment yet, to apply for the rebate.
Phase 3 – from 25 May 2022 – we will be paying the rebate to Bournemouth residents who pay their Council Tax by Direct Debit, and inviting (by letter) the rest of Bournemouth who pay by another method or haven’t made a Direct Debit payment yet, to apply for the rebate.
The Government announced on 3 February 2022 that it will provide funding for billing authorities to give all households in England, whose primary residence is valued in council tax bands A – D, a one-off payment of £150 from April 2022 to assist with the rise in energy costs. The government have set council’s a deadline to ensure all payments are made by 30 September 2022. Further guidance was then issued on 23 February 2022. This leaflet has been provided to us and other councils and will be included in your Council Tax bill for 2022/23.
The announcement came at the busiest time of the year for Council Tax departments. We are working with our software suppliers to devise a method of extracting sensitive data securely, to consider how that can be used to pay the governments rebate. We are also required to verify everyone's bank details.
Our expectation is that we should be in a position to pay the £150 Energy Rebate to residents who have paid their April Council Tax instalment by Direct Debit, in mid-May 2022. Whilst this payment is processed, we will be writing to the residents who do not pay by Direct Debit, inviting them to apply.
To sign up to pay by Direct Debit only takes a couple of minutes and can be done online.
Please read through the below information about the energy bill rebate below and how we will be processing it.
Please do not telephone or email us for further updates. We will keep this page updated with any additional information.
Who can receive the rebate
This rebate will only apply to a household that occupies a property which meets all of the following criteria on 1 April 2022.
- it is valued in council tax bands A – D. This includes property that is valued in band E but has an alternative valuation band of band D, as a result of the disabled band reduction scheme. Retrospective amendments to the band will not be included
- it is someone’s sole or main residence
- it is a chargeable dwelling, or in exemption classes N (students), S (students under 18), U (people with a severe mental impairment) or W (annexes occupied by a dependant relative)
- the person who is liable to pay the council tax (or would be, if the property was not exempt) is not a local authority, a corporate body or other body such as a housing association, the government or governmental body.
This means that properties which have no permanent resident, unoccupied or someone’s second home will not be eligible.
The grant will be paid to one liable council tax payer, although the grant is provided to support all the residents of the household, on the assumption that the property meets the criteria above. If this is not the case, the grant may be recovered.
If you are ineligible, it might be you are not the person liable to pay Council Tax in that property.
Living in a House of Multiple Occupation (HMO) where the landlord is liable for Council Tax
The rebate is available to people who live in an eligible property for which they are liable for Council Tax. It will not therefore be paid to residents of an HMO where the landlord is liable for the Council Tax bill. If the tenants of an HMO pay energy bills directly, you may be able to access support from the discretionary fund.
This is a rebate provided by the government and we must work within their eligibility criteria and pay the rebate to the correct person. We have no discretion to allow ineligible residents a rebate.
If you are not eligible
You may be eligible for the rebate under our discretionary scheme.
The Government will be providing funding for billing authorities to operate a cash limited discretionary fund for households in need, who would not otherwise be eligible. The Government advise this could include, for example, individuals on low incomes who live in properties valued in bands E – H.
The council is working on a discretionary scheme to enable this fund to be distributed fairly and equitably. When our discretionary scheme is published, it will be available here and a link will be provided.
It is likely we will pay the £150.00 directly into your bank account. Signing up for Direct Debit will ensure you receive the payment at the earliest opportunity.
If you do not pay Council Tax by Direct Debit
If you do not pay by Direct Debit, we are working on a process to enable you to claim the £150.00. Unfortunately, the guidance has been released at the busiest time for Revenues Departments, as they are preparing the 2022/23 Council Tax bills. Therefore, please do not contact the council for details of how to claim this grant, we will publish them here when they are available.
Where the household pays by Direct Debit, the billing authority is expected to pay the £150 directly into the bank account in use. So, if you do not currently pay by Direct Debit, you should sign up to pay by Direct Debit immediately to ensure you receive the £150 at the earliest opportunity.
Payments will not be made by cheque
We will only be offering a payment into your bank account. This is the most efficient and secure method of you receiving the rebate. If you do not have a bank account, we can credit your Council Tax account instead.
You must complete the online form to claim
We can only accept applications made electronically, as we are using a dedicated system to perform our pre-payment checks. This cannot be done manually. If you cannot complete the online form yourself, or a friend or relative can’t do it for you, you could use a public computer at your local library. You may have to book a time slot to use a public computer.
Receiving the rebate if you do not have a bank account
If you do not have a bank account, we can credit your Council Tax account instead. We are not able to provide you with a cheque or cash.
Receiving the rebate if you have no recourse to public funds
The council tax rebate (as part of the Energy Rebate Scheme 2022) is excluded from being considered a public fund under paragraph 6.2(i) of the Immigration Rules. This means that it is available to people who have no recourse to public funds, other than those who do not have leave to enter or remain in the UK and fall within one of the cohorts listed under Schedule 3 of the Nationality, Immigration and Asylum Act 2002.
Timing of payments
This is a new scheme that councils have never undertaken before, or for so many residents. The announcement came at the busiest time of the year for Council Tax departments. We now need to devise a method of extracting sensitive data and consider how that can be used to pay the governments rebate. As this hasn’t been performed before, our software suppliers are busy trying to facilitate this on our behalf.
To put this into context, we will have to pay over 100,000 residents who pay by Direct Debit and then request, obtain and securely hold bank details for the remaining 50,000 residents. In addition, we need to verify the bank details we are paying the Energy Rebate into.
The government have allowed councils until 30 September 2022 to ensure all payments are made. However, we realise the importance of providing this rebate to residents and endeavouring to complete this as quickly as possible.