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We are currently updating our payment system. You may notice some changes in the forms that you use to pay for things like licences and your council tax. If you have any questions, please contact our customer services team.

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Single person discount review

Why is this happening?

All households in Swale claiming a single person’s discount of 25% on their Council Tax bill are currently being checked for their authenticity using sophisticated data matching technology. This is part of an on - going review to validate legitimate single person discount claims and identify and remove those being claimed in error or fraudulently.

A 25% discount, worth a minimum of £244 a year, is given to anyone who claims to be living in a property on their own; currently 18,000 people in the area claim this discount.

In partnership with Capita, checks are being carried out to see whether people are genuinely living alone, by cross-referencing with other sources of information about their household such as, but not limited to, the electoral - roll registers and financial sector information.

Any persons failing to respond to requests for further information in relation to their claim will have the claim withdrawn from the beginning of the current financial year or from the date the discount was applied within the current financial year. If, during the review process, checks indicate that another adult is living at the address, the discount will be withdrawn.

If you receive a review from Capita please complete it and return the form directly to Capita. If you need any help completing the form or any further information please contact Capita directly on 0345 302 2311.

Why have I been sent a letter?

We are reviewing all of our single person discount awards. In doing so, we are using information that we hold on our Council Tax records and data from credit reference agencies. This data can provide an indication of who may be living at an address. We are still writing to all customers as this information may not be reliable. This may be due to:

We are writing to customers so that we can make sure the information that we hold is correct and that discount are awarded to those people who are entitled.

Can the Council access data about me?

Under the Data Protection Act, we are able to use data held by credit reference agencies to investigate Single person discount claims. Your data remains secure is only used for the review and is then removed.

What is the purpose of the Single Person Discount review and why do I need to respond?

The purpose of the review is to make sure that the single person discounts we have awarded are valid and that our information is up to date. We have an obligation to make sure that discounts are awarded to those who are entitled and that we remove those which are not valid.

What are credit reference agencies?

Credit reference agencies are companies that compile information from a number of different sources.

They provide this information in the form of credit reports which helps decide whether to grant an application for a loan, credit card, or provide another financial product. Both local and central Government also have access to the information in some circumstances, particularly to identify and combat fraud.

There are three major credit reference agencies in the UK:

I don’t have access to the internet, how can I update my information?

If you are unable to access the internet you can call 0345 302 2311. Lines are open between 9am and 5pm Monday to Friday (excluding public holidays) and calls are charged at the local rate. 

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