Council Tax Discount

Selinacroft

Registered User
Oct 10, 2015
936
Hi,
I've passed the CTAX discount form on to GP together with copy of letter from consultant giving Vascular Dementia diagnosis. I've just had to make a phone appointment with GP next week so I am guessing it is about my request for her to sign letter. Has anyone's GP turned down their request? I know the term "Severe Mental Impairment" is a bit harsh but I used to deal with thousands of such requests while I worked at the council and as long as "Dementia" was on the form it was never queried. Interested to hear your experiences before I have my telephone chat next week.
 

marionq

Registered User
Apr 24, 2013
6,008
Scotland
No hesitation and no charge from GP. In fact although there is a Schedule of charges on our surgery wall we have never been asked for payment for anything including travel documents.
 

leicester61

Registered User
Aug 26, 2012
146
Leicestershire
Hi,
I've passed the CTAX discount form on to GP together with copy of letter from consultant giving Vascular Dementia diagnosis. I've just had to make a phone appointment with GP next week so I am guessing it is about my request for her to sign letter. Has anyone's GP turned down their request? I know the term "Severe Mental Impairment" is a bit harsh but I used to deal with thousands of such requests while I worked at the council and as long as "Dementia" was on the form it was never queried. Interested to hear your experiences before I have my telephone chat next week.
Hi
my OH's consultant signed our form, no problem, no charge. Good Luck but im sure it will be fine
suzanne xx
 

Sue J

Registered User
Dec 9, 2009
8,035
I am sure somewhere on here someone has written that GP is not allowed to charge for this service:)
 

DMac

Registered User
Jul 18, 2015
535
Surrey, UK
Thanks all for so many replies. Fingers crossed I am worrying about nothing.
Hi, my MiL has just very recently received the reduction. It was turned around very quickly. No problems at all with the GP, apart from the fact they lost the form and had to go searching for it! My only suggestion is to make life as easy as possible for the GP, by hand delivering to and picking up the completed form from the surgery.
 

Kevinl

Registered User
Aug 24, 2013
4,774
Salford
I just filled the form in on line and e-mailed it back to them with a copy of the letter from the memory clinic consultant to the GP giving the diagnosis (took a picture with my phone of the letter). It did say somewhere they may contact the GP but whether they did or not I don't know. I got the discount backdated to the date on the letter.
As Nitram says GPs are not allowed to charge for this service, under their NHS contract they have to do this for free.
K
 

Witzend

Registered User
Aug 29, 2007
4,291
SW London
The only problem we had is that despite being specifically asked to send the letter to my brother who had P of A, and not to our mother because she would throw a fit, of course they addressed it to my mother, who opened it and threw a fit of utter outrage that anyone should connect her with 'severe mental impairment'.

I got round it by saying the useless shambles of a council must have got her mixed up with someone else, not to worry, I'd sort it out. Luckily she very soon forgot all about it.
 

brambles

Registered User
Sep 22, 2014
238
NW England
I think I must have been unlucky. I filled in the form for Council tax exemption and as instructed sent it to the GP with the Consultants letter of diagnosis.

I then got a call from the council saying the GP had signed the form but put that the dementia was not severe ( it isn't). The man said he was very surprised as obviously mum was going to get worse and once the discount was granted it would be back dated till the date of diagnosis....so there was no point in not granting it now.

The GP who signed the form had never met my mum.

I have not followed this up with the surgery, but do intend to.
 

blueboy

Registered User
Feb 21, 2015
125
I had problems with this - GP practice trying to charge for the letter and refusing to sign that she had dementia at all! It was all sorted out eventually - thanks to people on this forum. Some practices just seem to be either awkward and/or useless.
 

Kevinl

Registered User
Aug 24, 2013
4,774
Salford
I had problems with this - GP practice trying to charge for the letter and refusing to sign that she had dementia at all! It was all sorted out eventually - thanks to people on this forum. Some practices just seem to be either awkward and/or useless.
Charging is a breech of the practice's NHS contract something which can have serious implications (and it's worth reminding them of this).
Specifically they cannot charge for signing a form "To support a claim by or on behalf of a severely mentally impaired person for exemption from liability to pay the Council Tax or eligibility for a discount in respect of the amount of Council Tax payable."

Page 98, section 9 of their NHS contract specifically states they cannot levy a charge for signing the form.

K
https://www.england.nhs.uk/wp-content/uploads/2014/05/gms-contract-04-14.pdf
 

jenniferpa

Registered User
Jun 27, 2006
39,448
My mother's doctor acted as if I was expecting him to pay my mother's tax out of his own pocket. :rolleyes: In fact it was his intransigence on this issue that led me to actually find Talking Point.

I wore him down though. And he didn't try charging for the form, so there was that.
 

nitram

Registered User
Apr 6, 2011
19,704
North Manchester
"...the GP had signed the form but put that the dementia was not severe ( it isn't)..."

The dementia does not have to be severe, poor cognition and inability to function socially is sufficient.

The requirement is:-
A person is severely mentally impaired if he/she has a severe impairment of intelligence and social functioning (however caused) and appears to be permanent.
 

Selinacroft

Registered User
Oct 10, 2015
936
Thanks Nitram - I will keep that up my sleeve if I need it.
I don't know why the legislation is so badly worded, the SMI term has always sounded offensive and in over 20 years of being behind the CTAX desk for my sins, 99.9% of SMI applications were either for Dementia or AZ .
 

leicester61

Registered User
Aug 26, 2012
146
Leicestershire
Im surprised to see that some of you got the reduction back dated, when I asked the local council about this they said ' no we dont do that '
aww well grateful for the bit we do get
suzanne
 

nitram

Registered User
Apr 6, 2011
19,704
North Manchester
"Im surprised to see that some of you got the reduction back dated, when I asked the local council about this they said ' no we dont do that '"

It should have been backdated to the '...has been from' date entered by the doctor on the certificate provided that the proof of eligibility of a qualifying benefit covered that date.
 

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leicester61

Registered User
Aug 26, 2012
146
Leicestershire
"Im surprised to see that some of you got the reduction back dated, when I asked the local council about this they said ' no we dont do that '"

It should have been backdated to the '...has been from' date entered by the doctor on the certificate provided that the proof of eligibility of a qualifying benefit covered that date.
Hi Nitram
I think I will go back to them then and see how I get on. Thank you for that
suzanne x