Council tax for students

You may qualify for a discount or exemption on your council tax if you or the other people in your property are students. You will need to meet certain criteria to qualify.

Please note, you will need your 12 digit council tax reference number which is detailed on your bill in order to apply

Who can get a student discount or exemption?

Your council tax bill will assume that there are two or more adults aged 18 or over living in your home unless you tell us differently.

However, when considering the number of adults living in the property, we do not include full time students and student nurses, including non-British students and their spouses who are prevented from taking employment or have no recourse to public funds.

If everyone who lives in a property is a full time student the property is exempt from council tax. 

If the property is occupied by one or more student and one non-student, then a reduction of 25% may apply.

However, if you live in student halls provided by your university or college you don't need to apply.

You will usually be considered a full-time student if:

  • You are enrolled to undertake a full-time course of education at a college, university or other institutional establishment providing courses of further higher education for at least one academic or calendar year 
  • your attendance is required for at least 24 weeks in the year 
  • study for at least 21 hours per week during term time 


  • you are under 20 years of age
  • you are under taking a qualifying course of education up to (but not above) A-level standard or equivalent 
  • your course of study is due to last more than three months
  • you undertake at least 12 hours of study per week

International students with a dependant spouse / partner

If you are an international student with a partner or dependent who is not a British Citizen and is not allowed to work, claim benefits and has no recourse to public funds you may be entitled to a student exemption.

You will need to provide a copy of the front and back your partner’s biometric residence permit (BRP) when you complete the form below.

Before you apply

To qualify for a student discount or exemption you will need to upload a student council tax exemption certificate or equivalent written confirmation from the educational establishment. This should confirm the course being studied, the start and end dates of the course, and the number of hours of study required per week.

You will also need:

  • address and postcode of the property
  • names of all adults over 18 living at the property
  • date each person moved in
  • student number for each student, their course start and end date
  • a copy of each student’s council tax exemption certificate to upload (photos are acceptable). If you don't have this yet you can obtain it from your place of study’s admissions office or your online portal and upload it at a later date.

Apply for a student discount or exemption

If you have been asked to provide your student council tax exemption certificate or further evidence to support your application you can upload this using the link below.

Upload evidence of student status

If your application has been unsuccessful, we will write back to you to inform you or request further information or evidence to help support your application.


You must still pay the amount on your council tax bill until you hear from us and have been awarded any reduction. Any overpayment will automatically be refunded if you have paid by Direct Debit, or a credit notice will be issued so that you can claim a refund.

If you no longer qualify for a student discount or exemption

You must tell us within 21 days if you believe that you are no longer entitled to the discount or exemption.

If we find out later that you were not entitled to all or part of the reduction that you were awarded, we will send you a revised backdated council tax bill.