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My Landlord wants to be responsible for Council Tax!

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I am currently in a very sticky situation and would be grateful of any advice.

I have just returned to the Uk after a few years living abroad that were unsuccessful, as a result, myself and my daughter are renting a property from a private landlord and last week I was awarded housing benefit, however, my landlord is emigrating in a few months and has been advised 'for tax purposes' to have the council tax put into his name.

Consequently I received a letter yesterday from the Housing benefit section saying that they had been advised that I had moved out of the property and my claim is now on hold!!!

My question is - can my landlord have the council tax bill in his name even though he is not living in the property?, is this legal? and would I get him into trouble if I told the housing benefit people the truth?


thanks in advance



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No he can't. There is a table called the hierarchy of liability. This determines who the liable person should be for Council Tax purposes (see below). Also the Benefits Section would be likely to query why you were claiming Housing Benefit but not Council Tax Benefit


The hierarchy of liability:

To establish who the person is who is liable for the payment of Council Tax, there is a set 'hierarchy'.



This hierarchy is set down below; look down the list and as soon as you reach a description that applies to a person in your home, they will be the person liable for the Council Tax.

  • A resident freeholder (so for owner-occupied property the owner is liable)
  • A resident leaseholder (this includes assured tenants under the housing act 1988)
  • A resident statutory or secure tenant
  • A resident licensee
  • A resident
  • The owner (this applies where the dwelling has no residents)

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