Interim Rates and Charges Hardship Policy (Hardship Application)

An Interim Rates and Charges Hardship Policy has been developed. The purpose of this interim policy is to assist ratepayers who are suffering genuine financial hardship during the declared state of emergency by providing some relief from the requirement to pay Council rates and charges, including rates, interest and other relevant charges.

This policy applies to all property owners and ratepayers in the City of Launceston.

In particular, it applies to those property owners who have been identified, either by themselves, a Council officer or by an independent accredited financial counsellor, as not having the financial capacity to make the required payments.

For residential properties, assistance can only be granted to individuals experiencing financial hardship for payment of rates on the place where they live.

Applications for financial hardship on residential investment properties will not be considered.

Council may request a utilities notice connected to the property to assess for financial hardship.


Definition of financial hardship

Financial hardship is a situation where a property owner is reasonably unable, because of illness, unemployment or other reasonable causes during a declared state of emergency, to discharge their financial obligations. It involves an inability of the property owner to meet their commitments (bills), rather than an unwillingness to do so.

Hardship can arise from a variety of situations:

  • Loss of employment of the property owner or family member
  • Family breakdown
  • Illness, including physical incapacity, hospitalisation or mental illness of the property owner or family member, and/or
  • A death in the family

Council frequently enters into payment arrangements with property owners. This form of assistance is not categorised as 'financial hardship assistance'.

In these circumstances, Council will monitor progress towards clearing the debt within a specified time, but if the debt is not cleared further, assistance may be considered.


Apply for financial hardship

Apply now online here

Or, download PDF application forms below:


To learn more about the City of Launceston Community Care and Recovery Package, click here.