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COVID-19 How to ask for help

Help with Council Tax and financial support

The Government has provided all councils with funding to help those residents who find themselves in most financial need during the COVID-19 (Coronavirus) situation.

The Council has used this funding to reduce the 2020/21 council tax bill by £150 (COVID-19 Hardship Payment) for working-age adults who qualify for the Council Tax Reduction scheme. If your bill is less than £150 you will no longer owe anything for the year. 

If you already receive Council Tax Reduction, your council tax bill for 2020/21 will be re-issued in early May to show this reduction, which will appear as ‘COVID-19 Hardship Payment' on the bill. If you think you qualify for this and have not received an updated bill, please contact us at

If you apply for Council Tax Reduction during the year, then your reduction entitlement will be calculated from the date of your claim and we will also apply the £150 COVID-19 Hardship Payment and re-issue you with a new bill.

In recognition of the unexpected difficulties many people in Sutton are experiencing during the COVID-19 crisis, the Council has allocated extra funding to help residents.

We are working in partnership with Sutton Housing Partnership and Encompass to ensure that this additional funding is used to prevent homelessness, as well as double the funding available for our Crisis Loans help. Crisis Loans provide help to cover unexpected expenses in a crisis or emergency.

Applicants must receive one or more of the following:

  • Income Support

  • Income-based Jobseeker's Allowance

  • Income-related Employment and Support Allowance

  • Pension Credit

  • Universal Credit

  • Housing Benefit

  • Council Tax reduction

If you need help with paying your rent or you are at risk of becoming homeless, you could be entitled to a Discretionary Housing Payment (DHP). Anyone who is currently claiming Housing Benefit or Universal Credit can apply for a Discretionary Housing Payment. Unfortunately, DHP can’t help with service charges or increased rent due to outstanding arrears.

Alternative payment arrangements

For anyone experiencing difficulty in making payment, we can agree alternative arrangements with you. We will make arrangements with you that take account of your circumstances. This may include rescheduling or delaying payment. 

If you wish to discuss your circumstances you should contact the Council Tax Team by email at or call 020 8770 5000 and they will be able to advise you on the best course of action.

Support for those on low income

There are a number of other financial schemes available to support people who are in employment or self employed and who are struggling financially as a result of the COVID-19 outbreak. These include the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme and the Coronavirus Self-Employment Income Support Scheme.

Details of the further help available to residents facing short- or long-term financial difficulties in paying their council tax is available on our website. This includes how you can claim Universal Credit or Council Tax Reduction.

Advice on debt

If you need independent information or advice to help to deal with debt problems, how to avoid losing your home and how to get your finances back into shape, the Citizens Advice Bureau can help.