Unusual CTR Schemes

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    John Smith

    Hi all,

    I seem to remember, some years back, an LA introducing a CTR scheme that totally disregarded ALL UC income, thus obviating the need to look at / action the increasingly absurd number of UC notifs that are now tending towards the infinite. Is anyone able to enlighten me as to how many LAs have such schemes, which LAs they are, and how successful such schemes have been in practice – please feel free to pm me if you don’t wish to post publicly.


    the LA i live in had this – basically treating UC as a passporting benefit regardless of income received
    Seemed quite an expensive approach and quite unpopular -eg
    a working age couple , 2 kids , no housing costs, could earn £30k a year and get £40 a month UC – their £2000 ctax a year is covered in full
    Couple next door are in the same boat but without UC – they don’t qualify for any CTS…..
    its quite a shock for couple 1 whern the do float off UC

    Unusaual for a working age scheme to be more generous than pensioner schemes, but this one is.

    John Smith

    Thanks for responding, yes, I could see such a scheme being construed as inherently unfair, and could possibly be struck down by the courts. I was thinking more along the lines of a grid-type scheme for UC customers that incorporates, from the “other” income and household composition, roughly what the UC income would be, and adjusts the income bands accordingly. If tweaked properly, I think this could be made quite fair, and alleviate the burden of all those UC notifs.


    You are probably thinking of us. Our CTR scheme disregards all UC income.

    The only income we take into account is earned income, which we can derive from the UC award notification and process automatically. Depending on what band their earned income fall in determines their monthly contribution towards their Council Tax.

    The logic behind the scheme is if a UC claimant has children, a disability, a rent liability, child care costs etc, they get additional UC to reflect that. We just disregard the claimant’s circumstances and their UC award on the basis that they effectively off-set each other.

    The schemes works really well, mainly because we can automate UC processing. At the last count the same scheme has been adopted by Cambridge, Hertsmere, Ipswich, Barnet and probably some others. Can’t really think of any drawbacks. You could argue it is more generous to working age claimants who have high levels of non-earned income (like private pensions) but that is such a small cohort I don’t think it is that relevant. The only time we encounter problems is when the DWP don’t manage the UC claim properly (so, we stop getting notifications or they don’t terminate a nil award after 2 months…)


    John Smith

    Thanks for responding – yes, that does make a lot of sense, and as it takes earned income into account, as opposed to passporting all UC claims, the unfair situations that may arise as pointed out by pbirks above would be much alleviated.

    John Boxall

    Of course looking at how UC works logically CTS would be 100% if you get any UC or if not nothing

    Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure nineteen nineteen and six, result happiness. Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure twenty pounds ought and six, result misery. The blossom is blighted, the leaf is withered, the god of day goes down upon the dreary scene, and—and in short you are for ever floored.

    Wilkins Micawber, Ch12 David Copperfield

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