Free TV licences
Free TV Licences, funded by the Government, for everyone aged 75 or over ended on 31 July 2020. From 1 August 2020, anyone aged 75 or over receiving Pension Credit, is eligible for a free TV Licence, paid for by the BBC.
You can also get TV licence concessions if you're registered blind or (under certain conditions) if you live in nursing or residential care or in sheltered accommodation.
The need for a TV licence
You need to be covered by a TV Licence to watch or record live TV programmes on any channel, or to download or watch any BBC programmes on iPlayer – live, catch up or on demand. This applies to any device and provider you use.
If you are 75 or over
You can get a free TV licence if you’re 75 or older and you either:
- get Pension Credit
- live with your partner who gets Pension Credit
The licence covers everyone living at your address.
You can apply when you’re 74 if you already get Pension Credit. You’ll still need to pay for your licence until the end of the month before your 75th birthday. After that you’ll be covered by your free licence.
For more information contact: Northern Ireland Pension Centre
Accommodation for Residential Care (ARC) Concessionary TV Licence
Care home residents
You will need a TV licence if you watch or record television programmes as they're being shown on TV or an online TV service, or download or watch any BBC programmes on iplayer - live, catch up or on demand, in your room, flat or bungalow. This is the case whether you use a TV, computer, mobile phone or any other device.
However, you may be able to get a concession on your licence.
Find out about the types of residential licences, if you qualify and who can apply from the TV Licensing website:
Residential care homes and sheltered accommodation
The management of a residential care home needs to make sure the home is covered by a TV licence.
This will cover anyone who watches or records television programmes as they're being shown on TV or an online TV service, or downloads or watches any BBC programmes on i-player - live, catch up or on demand. This includes residents, staff and guests using devices such as a TV, computer, mobile phone, games console, digital box or DVD/VHS recorder.
However, the accommodation may qualify for a concessionary licence for residents.
The management of the sheltered accommodation is responsible for ensuring that a valid TV Licence covers all communal areas. Residents need a separate licence for their own living area. However, sheltered accommodation may qualify for the Accommodation for Residential Care (ARC) scheme.
Retired or disabled
You qualify for an ARC Concessionary TV Licence if you are retired or disabled and live in eligible accommodation. Speak to your administrators to find out if your accommodation qualifies for this licence.
If you have any questions about the ARC Concessionary TV Licence, contact TV Licensing:
Blind (severely sight impaired)
If you are blind (severely sight impaired) and can provide the appropriate evidence, you are eligible to apply for a 50 per cent concession. Your licence will also cover anyone who lives with you.
If you are partially sighted (sight impaired) you are not eligible.
Find out more from the TV Licensing website.