Energy bills rebate information

On 3 February 2022 the government announced support to help households with rising energy bills including a one-off £150 energy rebate payment to council tax payers in bands A-D. 

Please note: This scheme will close for applications on 4 September 2022 so that all verification checks can be completed and payment made by the 30 September 2022 deadline

More information is available in the government's guidance for local authorities pageenergy bills and the cost of living factsheets and energy rebate information flyer.

Who will receive this £150 payment (rebate)?

Most households in council tax bands A to D will qualify for a payment (rebate) of £150. Provided the following criteria is being met on 1 April 2022.

  1. The property must be in council tax bands A to 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
  2. The property must be the council tax payer’s sole or main residence. Payment will not be made in respect of empty properties, properties used as second homes or properties in multiple occupation(HMO) where the landlord pays the council tax
  3. If you pay less than £150 council tax, or you receive single person discount, or do not pay because you receive council tax support, you will still be entitled to the payment
  4. You will also be eligible if you don’t pay council tax because you receive an exemption for one of the following reasons:
    • Everyone living in the property is a student
    • Everyone living in the property is aged under 18
    • Everyone living in the property has a severe mental impairment
    • The property is an annex that’s occupied by:
      • A dependant relative (of the person living in the main house) who is aged 65 or over
      • Someone with a severe mental impairment
      • Someone who is substantially or permanently disabled

A payment cannot be made if the council tax payer is a business, a body such as a housing association, a local authority or a government body.

The Council has also received funding provide support to other energy bill payers who are not eligible for the main scheme. Details of the discretionary scheme are below.

When will I receive this payment?

Payments have now been made to all eligible customers who pay council tax by direct debit and bank details can be verified

All eligible customers who have yet received payment will need to complete the on line form which is available at the bottom of this page. Once the form has been submitted the verification process will take up to 3 weeks and we will contact you if we need more information to support your application

Please do not telephone or email us to chase your payment as dealing with these calls will delay us and cause payments to be made later.

The scheme closes on 4 September 2022.

How to apply

Eligible households are now able to submit an application for the energy rebate payment. You will not be able to complete the form if you are not eligible, so please ensure you have read the eligibility criteria.

Please follow the instructions carefully, provide all of the information requested and check that all of the details are correct before submitting the form

The council is required to verify all bank details before making energy rebate payments.

You must have the following information available to complete the application form.

  • Your seven digit council tax account reference which is displayed on your 2022-23 bill. The bill must cover the date of 1 April 2022
  • Your bank account number and sort code which must correspond to the person named on the council tax bill. The bank account must be in the name of the person liable for council tax who is completing this application. Please double check to ensure that the details have been entered correctly. Applications with incorrect details will be rejected and you will be required to complete a new application
  • Your bank statement. We do not need to see transactions on the statement but we need to clearly see the name, address, account number and sort code. The bank account must be in the name of the council tax liable person who is completing this application.  You will be required to upload the statement on the application form
  • An email address
  • You will be required to enter your first name and surname on the application form which must match the name on your council tax account.  If you get an error message about the name you will need to contact the council tax helpline on 01242 264323

The on line application will not allow you to proceed if you do not provide all of the required information. If the bank statement does not display the name, address, account number and sort code it will delay your application being processed and we may need to ask you to supply more information.

Once the application form is submitted you will receive an email confirming it has been received.

The Government requires checks to be carried out to validate your bank account before payment can be made. These checks can take up to 15 working days to complete.

Provided the bank account checks are successful, payment will be made by BACS to your bank account. When the payment is made into your bank account it will have the description CTAX ENERGY REBATE.

Please do not contact us in the meantime. Our energy rebate team will be working hard over the coming weeks to ensure that applications are processed as quickly as possible so that the payments can be made to eligible households.

Energy rebate application form

If you have an urgent query please contact the energy rebate payment team by email to ctax.energyrebate@cheltenham.gov.uk or call 01242 264320. Please quote your council tax account number and name and address so that we can answer your query.


Discretionary energy rebate scheme

The council has been allocated some discretionary funding to provide support to other energy bill payers who are not eligible for the main scheme or extra support to some household which have already received a payment from the main scheme.

The discretionary scheme is currently open for applications until 30 September 2022 from households who meet the criteria below. All discretionary scheme payments will be for £150.

1. Council tax payers that are not eligible for the main energy rebate scheme and meet the following conditions

  • Council tax payers in bands E – H that are in receipt of council tax support
  • Council tax payers in bands F – H that are in receipt of a disabled band reduction (those in band E qualify for the main scheme)
  • Council tax payers in bands E – H that are in receipt of a carer or severely mentally impaired disregard
  • Households that, as a result of a review, proposal or appeal which was made prior to the announcement on 3 February 2022, and is successful after 1 April 2022, are in council tax bands A to D
  • Households that are council tax payers in payers in bands E to H and are in receipt of housing benefit, but do not qualify for council tax support

2. Council tax payers that are eligible for a main scheme payment and meet the following conditions are able to apply for a top up payment

  • Council tax payers in payers in bands  A to D and are in receipt of housing benefit, but do not qualify for council tax support.
  • Council tax payers and have become a new Universal Credit claimant between 26 May and 26 July 2022 and therefore not eligible for the government’s cost of living payment. Any new claimants eligible for the cost of living payment due to receiving other qualifying benefits are excluded
  • Council tax payers and the eligible person is in receipt of contributory, or "new style", Employment and Support Allowance (ESA) and therefore not eligible for the government’s cost of living payment. Any new claimants eligible for the cost of living payment due to receiving other qualifying benefits are excluded

Emails and letters have been sent to households that will be eligible in 1 and 2 above and an application can be made by completing the energy rebate application form.

Energy rebate application form

3. Residents who live in a House in Multiple Occupation and are not liable for council tax but are liable to pay the gas/electricity bills

To be eligible the applicant must provide evidence to show the property is their sole or main residence and has been since 1 April 2022 and payment that has been made for energy at the property within the last 3 months

Residents in this category will need to call the energy rebate team on 01242 2643230 to make an application. You will need to provide your bank details and provide a statement for the same account showing your name, address, the name of your bank, the sort code and account number. You will also need to provide a bill from your energy company showing your name and address. We cannot process san application from you if you do not have these details 


How to check the council tax band for your property

The band for your property is shown on your council tax bill above the charge details – look for the words 'Annual Charges for Council Tax Band' or you can check your council tax band on the government website. You can also request a review of your band but will need to explain why you believe your band is incorrect and also provide supporting evidence.

More information about support for energy bills can be found in the government factsheet on support for energy bills and the cost of living.

Fraud

The council will be carrying out robust pre-payment checks to ensure that the correct liable person receives the energy rebate payment. If we believe that the information we hold about the council tax payer is inaccurate we may withhold payment. Alternatively, if we make a payment and later discover that we shouldn’t have done so then we will ask you to pay the money back.

The government and the council will not tolerate any council tax payer falsifying their records or providing false evidence to gain access to the energy rebate payment. Anyone who provides inaccurate or misleading information may be guilty of fraud under the Fraud Act 2006.

If you have an urgent query please email the energy rebate payment team at ctax.energyrebate@cheltenham.gov.uk or call 01242 264320. Please quote your council tax account number and name and address so that we can answer your query

Council tax energy rebate scam telephone calls and emails

Householders are being encouraged to be alert as scammers begin to target the new energy rebate scheme.

There have been reports that scammers are contacting people by phone and requesting bank details to access the new rebate payment.

Cheltenham Borough Council will not call you and ask you to quote your bank details over the phone, we would ask that you refer to this page for up-to-date information.

Please contact us on 01242 264320 or email us at ctax.energyrebate@cheltenham.gov.uk you are concerned about any contact you have received in relation to the council tax energy rebate