Over 850,000 people in the UK eligible for a Council Tax refund

Jan 15, 2023 | Articles, Council Tax

Could you be owed a Council Tax refund? A recent investigation from Money Saving Expert has found more than 850,000 people in the UK are owed £100+ in refunds for overpaid Council Tax. Currently, the money sits unclaimed with local authorities across the UK. 

Think you might be one of them? We’ve outlined the reasons you might have overpaid Council Tax in the past below, and how to check if you are one of the people owed money. Most importantly, we’ve included details on how you can claim your refund.


How many people are owed a Council Tax refund? 

In a July 2022 investigation, Money Saving Expert found that there were 862,000 households owed unclaimed Council Tax refunds. Between the 364 local authorities in the UK, more than £150 million pounds of overpaid Council Tax are owed to past and current residents.


Am I likely to be owed any money?

The refunds are owed to those who overpaid for their Council Tax. This could be because: 

  • You pre-paid for your Council Tax, then moved before the end of the period you paid for

  • You forgot to cancel a payment in time when you moved

  • Your property has changed tax band, and you overpaid tax based on the incorrect band

The key question as to whether it’s likely you’re owed money is – have you moved home in the last 30 years within the UK?


Normally, when you overpay for Council Tax the extra credit is returned to you, or put towards your next bill. Those that are due refunds will be households who moved from one local authority to another, which left the previous council unsure of where to send the extra payment.

How can I claim a Council Tax refund?

If you have moved between local authorities in the UK since 1993, the first step to claiming any refund you might be owed is to approach your council. Each council manages the process differently – for some, there is a straightforward form available through the council website, while for others you’ll need to call or email the council’s support team.

There are likely to be a lot of people reaching out at the moment regarding these refunds, so it may take a while to get a response back. We’d only recommend contacting your Council if you do think there’s a chance you may have overpaid Council Tax in the past.

Once your claim has been verified, your old council will let you know what other details they need and will issue you your refund. MSE estimate that the average successful claimant will receive more than £100.


Read more about Council Tax in the UK:


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