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Published on 05 March 2018 10:00 AM

Age Scotland is calling for more action to ensure that some of the country's poorest pensioner households do not miss out on support with council tax.

New figures show that up to 17,000 lower income pensioner households are missing out on the help they are entitled to and could be struggling unnecessarily.

The Lower Income Exemption Scheme was introduced in April 2017 to mitigate council tax rises. But fewer than four per cent of eligible households are claiming the support, according to figures obtained by the Scottish Labour Party through a Freedom of Information request.

Adam Stachura, Age Scotland's Head of Policy and Communications, said: "It's very disappointing that around 17,000 of the poorest pensioner households could be missing out on this extra help. Too many older people are struggling to get by on a low income, worrying about paying for essentials such as food and fuel bills.

“Lower income households, including pensioners, have been hardest hit by council tax increases and this support could make a difference to their quality of life.

“We can help older people to find out if they are eligible by calling our free Helpline on 0800 12 44 222 for a benefits check. We would also like local councils and the Scottish Government to do more to make people aware of the help that is available to them.”

For more information: Please contact Hazel Mollison, Media & PR Officer on 07801 500 663