New legislation to exempt care leavers from paying council tax will come into force from 1 April 2019, Finance Minister Rebecca Evans announced today.
The plan to take forward regulations to exempt care leavers under 25 from paying council tax is set out as responses to a consultation with local authorities, voluntary organisations, taxpayers and care leavers themselves are published.
The feedback to the consultation has been very positive, with 91% of respondents supporting the proposal to provide this additional help to care leavers and 80% agreeing the exemption should be extended to the age of 25.
The principle of exempting care leavers from paying council tax has been widely accepted for some time, but the level of support available to care leavers across Wales has been inconsistent.
The new legislation is the latest in a series of measures designed to make council tax fairer in Wales – a key Welsh Government commitment.
Finance Minister Rebecca Evans said:
“I am keen the Welsh Government and local authorities do everything possible to support care leavers and support their successful transition into adulthood and independent living.
“Today’s announcement is another positive step in our pledge to make council tax fairer and I want to thank everyone who took part in the consultation.”
As council tax bills start to arrive through the letterboxes of homes across Wales, the Finance Minister is urging people to check if they are entitled to help paying their bill.
The minister added:
“There are many discounts, reductions and exemptions available and I would encourage everyone to check the Welsh Government website to see if they could be paying less council tax.”
The regulations to exempt care leavers from paying council tax will be laid before the National Assembly in early March.