In our July Business Rates Update we anticipated the swift arrival of two further consultation papers from the Government during the Summer, for discussion and implementation ahead of next April’s rating revaluation. Whilst that relating to transitional arrangements is still awaited the other, on the ‘Check, Challenge, Appeal’ process, was released last week including one simply outrageous new proposal.
As we detail in our latest Business Rates Update, changes being proposed by the Government would effectively outlaw appeals in England, condemning hundreds of thousands of firms to overpaying their rates bills, even when they can prove they should be lower. Under the reforms, appeals against 2017 rating assessments which fall ‘within the bounds of reasonable professional judgement’ can be dismissed, leaving businesses with limited means to challenge their assessments.
The move, comparable to demonstrating you were paying too much income tax but without any means to reduce payments, is preposterous. This is the latest in a series of Government propositions which condemn ratepayers in England, who already pay the highest local property tax in the World, to excessive business rates.
We’ve summarised the key points and provided a detailed commentary in our video blog and Business Rates Update. We also give details of how you can respond to the consultation which we encourage you do at your earliest convenience. Now is the time to have your say.
Should you wish to discuss any of these issues please get in touch with me or your usual Gerald Eve contact.