Council tax payers claiming the 25 per cent single resident discount will soon be subject to an annual check.
Arun District Council has announced it will, in partnership with credit reference agency Experian, be checking claims are ‘still valid’.
The discount, which currently applies to 24,000 people living in the Arun District, is given to people who are the only adult living in the home.
Cllr Dudley Wensley, corporate governance cabinet member at Arun District Council, said: “We are keen to make sure the right people are claiming and receiving the proper discount as we want to ensure no one is unnecessarily struggling to pay their council tax bill.”
However, he added, people who claim a discount they are not entitled to ‘are cheating the system’ and ‘placing an unfair burden’ on other residents ‘particularly those honest residents who maybe struggling to do so’.
Claimants may be contacted by Arun District Council to confirm or check ‘the information currently held to ensure that their claim is still valid’.
In a statement this was described as ‘a valuable exercise’ and explained: “Last year, in excess of £200,000 was recouped during the process, with 500 discounts being cancelled.”
It stated: “Arun District Council is keen to encourage people who are incorrectly claiming the single resident discount to let the council have their up to date, correct information as soon as possible, before the review begins.”
To contact a member of the council tax team phone 01903 737752 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. For more information about council tax visit http://www.arun.gov.uk/counciltax