A children’s charity is calling on Harrow Council to grant care leavers exemption from paying council tax until they are 25.

The Children’s Society believes such a move will give these young adults a “fairer start” in life and will help them manage their finances.

In a joint letter with children’s commissioner Anne Longfield, it has written to Cllr Graham Henson, leader of Harrow Council, urging him to consider the change.

According to the charity, research shows that children who leave care are more susceptible to council tax debts.

Mark Russell, CEO of The Children’s Society, said: “We know many of these young people won’t have been taught how to manage their money and don’t have families to turn to if they get into difficulty.

“Moving into independent accommodation is often the first time they will have to manage all their financial responsibilities.

“By granting an exemption, councils will be showing their support at this crucial time.

“It will also reduce the chances of them getting into debt and facing consequences, such as demand letters, potential court summons and even homelessness.”

Harrow Council currently offers a 100 per cent discount for those who received care from its children’s social services, provided they meet certain criteria.

They are eligible if they are aged between 18 and 26, live alone and in a property in council tax bands A to C.

Furthermore, the exemption is for a maximum of six months, which can be spread across two financial years or across two properties.

Ms Longfield said she will push for every council to “fulfil their duty” to care leavers and provide exemption as soon as possible.

Cllr Henson has been contacted for comment.