Non Dependant Rules: Explained

Non Dependant Rules: Explained

If you share your home with someone who is not your partner or a dependant or joint tenant your entitlement can be reduced through rules on non-dependant deductions.

If you share your property with joint tenants e.g. a flat share they are not classed as non-dependants.

Who counts as a non-dependant

A non-dependant is a person who:

  • resides with the claimant, and
  • is over 16 and a deduction is taken when the non-dependant is 18 or over, and
  • is not a partner, or dependant child of the claimant and/or their partner, and
  • is not liable for paying the rent or pays rent to you as a sub-tenant.

Non-dependants are often people like grown-up sons or daughters and elderly relatives.

If someone pays rent to you as a sub-tenant you should declare it by saying 'yes' to the question on sub-tenants on the 'net income' page. People who pay rent to you as a sub-tenant do not count as non-dependants.

Amount of non-dependant deduction

The rate of non-dependant deduction depends on whether the non-dependant claims benefits (and which one), whether they work more than 16 hours a week and, if so, their gross income.

  • if the non-dependant is aged under 18 then no deductions apply.
  • If the non-dependant is out of work and on benefits you should select one of the first three categories
  • if the non-dependant works less then 16 hours then you should select "non-dependants aged 18 or over and on other benefits (e.g. State Retirement Pension, contributory ESA), or working less than 16 hours per week, or working 16+ hours and gross income under under £128 a week 
  • if the non-dependant works more than 16 hours then you should calculate their gross income and select the appropriate band. For non-dependant deductions gross income includes the gross (before tax and National Insurance) amount the non-dependant earns each week, plus any other income including tax credits and benefit income (except income from Attendance Allowance or Disability Living Allowance).

Exemptions from non-dependant deductions

If you or your partner are blind or claiming Disability Living Allowance care component or Attendance Allowance then non-dependant deductions do not apply. The calculator automatically recognises cases where this applies.

In Pension Credit only people claiming for help with housing costs, because they have an outstanding mortgage, are affected by rules on non-dependant deductions.

There is no deduction for some groups, depending on the benefit in question.

In Housing Benefit no deductions will be made if:

  • the non-dependant is in receipt of Pension Credit (savings credit cases as well as guarantee credit)
  • the non-dependant is in receipt of a training allowance or a YTS scheme
  • the non-dependant has been a patient in hospital for 52 weeks or more
  • the non-dependant is a full-time student (but deductions may be made during the summer vacation if the student does any paid work in this period)
  • the non-dependant is a prisoner

In Council Tax Support deductions will vary from April 2013 as Local Councils have had to adopt their own scheme and you should refer to your Local Council's scheme to confirm deductions. This calculator covers about 95% of schemes. Some Councils have a scheme called second adult rebate which you may qualify for if you share your home with someone who is not your partner.

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