Someone who is severely mentally impaired is not counted for council tax purposes.

If everyone who lives at a property, except for one resident, qualifies for a council tax discount, they are classed as disregarded for council tax purposes and a 25% discount only can be claimed. 

However, you may be entitled to an exemption from council tax if every adult resident in the property has a severe mental impairment.

Before you apply, you need to ensure you have the following to hand in order to complete the application form. If you do not provide this information your application will not be processed:

  • The name and address of the person you are claiming for
  • Their council tax account number
  • The benefit award letter, confirming proof of qualifying benefits (see below for further information on qualifying benefits). This letter will need to be uploaded to the online application form at the time of completion
  • The name and address of their GP
  • A certificate from their GP to confirm they are classed as having a Severe Mental Impairment. This can be uploaded to the online application form when completing. If you do not have this to hand, please email the template below over to the GP to complete and email back to you, prior to starting, as to not delay your application. We cannot accept GP letters or reports as evidence of the patient’s condition.

If you cannot upload them to the application form please email them to as soon as possible so that your application is not delayed. Ensure in the email to quote the council tax account number and application reference.

SMI Doctors certificate template

What is a severe mental impairment?

Someone who is considered to be severely mentally impaired has a severe impairment to intelligence and social functioning (however caused). It must be a permanent impairment.  This may be due to a degenerative brain disorder such as Alzheimer’s disease, a stroke or other forms of dementia.

To be considered as severely mentally impaired, the person concerned must have a certificate of confirmation from their registered medical practitioner. 

In addition, to qualify for the discount, the person must be entitled to (or have an underlying entitlement to at least one of these benefits:

  • Incapacity Benefit (short-term)
  • Attendance Allowance
  • Severe Disablement Allowance
  • Care Component of a Disability Living Allowance (middle or higher rate)
  • An increase in the rate of Disablement Pension, where constant attendance is needed.
  • Disability Working Allowance
  • Unemployability Supplement
  • Constant Attendance Allowance
  • Unemployability Allowance
  • Income Support that includes a disability premium
  • Incapacity Benefit (long-term)
  • Standard or enhanced rate of the daily living component of the Personal Independence Payment
  • Employment Support Allowance (Income Related or Contributory)