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All about business rates

Rates Relief

Mandatory & Discretionary Rate Relief

Registered charities are entitled to 80% Mandatory Relief. The Council also has the discretion to grant the further 20% as Discretionary to Charities. Discretionary Relief can also be awarded to non profit making organisations for up to 100% of their bills.

If you think you may be eligible please contact the Business Rates Department.

Section 49 Hardship

Section 49 Hardship of the Local Government Finance Act 1988 says that a Council can reduce or cancel rates if:

A) you would suffer hardship if the Council made you pay AND

B) on balance, it would be in the interests in the council taxpayers to reduce or cancel your rates

Section 44a Relief

If part of a property is temporarily unoccupied such as for a phased occupation or vacation of a property, you may be able to claim a reduction in your Business Rates for the unoccupied part. The area concerned must be totally unused (example: not used as a walkway) and where possible isolated from the occupied area.

If you think you may be eligible for a reduction, you should write to the Business Rates department and enclose:

  • Details showing which part of the property is unoccupied (if possible enclose a site plan)
  • The date this part of the property became unoccupied

When we receive the request our inspector will visit the property and we will then decide if a reduction can be allowed. If we decide to grant 44a relief we will request a certificate from the valuation officer that gives the proportion of the property's rateable value which applies to the unoccupied part. If we do grant relief it will only be for a maximum of three months for commercial assessments or six months for an industrial assessment. After this time 100% rates will be due.

Retrospective requests will require supporting evidence such as photographs, work dockets, etc.

Please note that submitting false or misleading evidence for financial gain is a crime under the Fraud Act 2006 and could lead to prosecution.

When we receive the certificate from the valuation officer, we will reduce your Business Rates accordingly.

Last updated Wednesday, 17th October 2018

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