Financial support (including help to pay your council tax)

This page has information about the financial help available for people whose household income has been affected by COVID-19 (coronavirus).

For example, people who have:

  • lost their job
  • had their hours cut
  • been furloughed
  • lost income through self-isolating

There is also help available for people who:

  • are self-employed
  • already receive benefits, but need extra help

Citizens Advice Rutland offer a money advice service - visit their website or call: 01572 723494

Jump to:

  1. Help if you cannot afford to pay your council tax 
  2. Help for people who have lost their job, had their hours cut or can’t work due to self-isolating
  3. Help for the self-employed
  4. Extra help for people who already receive benefits
  5. Help for renters
  6. What happens after you have made a claim for a local benefit / council tax support
  7. Why we are advising you not to call us about claims
  8. Free school meals vouchers
  9. Help with childcare costs
  10. Grants

Help if you cannot afford to pay your council tax 

It’s important to carry on paying your council tax if you can. 

We use this income to pay for essential social care services - there has been a big increase in requests for help because of COVID-19.

We understand this is a very difficult time. If you do not believe you need to apply for benefits, there are still some options that may help. You can:

  • spread your payments over 12 months instead of 10 - this means that your payments will be lower
  • defer payment until 1 June - this means that you will paying from June onwards

If one of these options would help you, email us: localtaxation@rutland.gov.uk 

Help for people who have lost their job, had their hours cut or can’t work due to self-isolating

Universal Credit

If you are of working age, you can apply for Universal Credit to help with day-to-day living expenses. 

You will be given a number to call, to make a telephone appointment. Allow plenty of time to make this call – lots of people are submitting claims, so it may take some time to get through.

If you need help to make a claim for Universal Credit, call the Citizens Advice Rutland helpline: 

T: 0800 144  8444

Statutory sick pay

If you’re self-isolating, you may be able to claim statutory sick pay.

Statutory sick pay is now also available for the self-employed.  

Help with council tax

To apply for help with your council tax, please complete a benefit claim form.

Fill in as many details as you can.

To submit your benefit claim, you can either:

  • Scan or photograph your completed form, and email to benefits@rutland.gov.uk
  • Post it to: Revenues and Benefits, Rutland County Council, Catmose House, Catmos Street, Oakham, Rutland LE15 6HP

If you cannot submit your claim in either of these ways, call: 01572 722577

Face to face appointments are unavailable at this time.

Financial hardship

If you’re struggling because of sudden financial hardship, you can apply for help from our crisis fund.

The crisis fund is managed by Citizens Advice Rutland.  Because of COVID-19, we are giving them extra funding. 

Complete you application as best you can, then contact Citizens Advice Rutland to make you application:

T: 01572 723494

W: rutlandcab.org.uk

Help for the self-employed

All of the support in the section above is available for the self-employed.

Find out about government support packages available nationally for the self-employed 

Extra help for people who already receive benefits

The government has increased local housing allowance rates. This means you may get more benefit towards your housing costs.

If your benefit doesn’t cover all of your rent or council tax and you're finding it hard to pay the remainder, you can apply for a discretionary housing payment and/or discretionary funding.

Discretionary housing payments (DHP)

  • A DHP is awarded on top of your housing benefit , or the housing element of your Universal Credit. 
  • The total we pay you can’t be more than your rent. 
  • The amount of DHP paid to you depends on your individual circumstances. 
  • You must be able to demonstrate that you are suffering from severe financial hardship.

To apply, download and complete a discretionary housing payment application form

Fill in as many details as you can.

To submit your benefit claim, you can either:

  • Scan or photograph your completed form, and email to benefits@rutland.gov.uk
  • Post it to: Revenues and Benefits, Rutland County Council, Catmose House, Catmos Street, Oakham, Rutland LE15 6HP

If you cannot submit your claim in either of these ways, call: 01572 722577

Face to face appointments are unavailable at this time.

Discretionary funding for council tax

If you need extra help towards your council tax, you can apply for discretionary funding

You will have to show that you are suffering from severe financial hardship.

Help for renters

If you need extra help towards your rent, you can apply for a discretionary housing payment (DHP) if you are receiving either housing benefit or a housing element in your Universal Credit.

Read the government guidance for renters and landlords to find out about protection for renters affected by COVID-19.

What happens after you have made a claim for a local benefit / council tax support

We will assess you claim as soon as possible after we receive your completed application.

We may need to contact you to ask for more information, or to check some details - it's helpful if you can give us an email address, so we can contact you quickly.

Please don’t call us to check how your claim is progressingwe will contact you once we have assessed it.

Why we are advising you not to call us about claims

We know many of you would prefer to talk to us about your claim. 

However, we only have a limited number of benefit officers, and we are seeing a big increase in the number of people making claims.

If our officers are taking calls, they cannot process claims. 

We are therefore asking people not to call for updates, so our officers can process claims as soon as possible.


Free school meals vouchers

If you are eligible for free school meals, you can get a weekly £15 voucher from your child's school to use for buying your child's food in supermarkets.

Read the full government guidance for more information about this scheme.

Help with childcare costs

Government help with childcare costs – if you are a key worker using childcare, visit the Childcare Choices website to find out about the financial help available. 

Grants

The Fashion and Textile Children’s Trust (FTCT) are offering grants to buy essential items for children whose parents who work in the fashion and textile industry (or have worked in the industry during the last nine years).

Visit the FTCT website for more information and to apply 

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