New system to challenge business rates outlined

Businesses can now pursue a new three-step appeal 

A system to allow businesses to check and appeal business rates bills has been announced. The aim is to ensure that disputes are settled more promptly.
Currently, over 955,000 appeals have been submitted against rating valuations but less than 2% of business rates appeals proceed to a tribunal hearing.
The new process is part of the government’s target of self-sufficiency for councils and the retention of 100% of local taxes by 2020.
Announcing the plan last month, the then secretary of state for Communities and Local Government, Greg Clark, said: “The vast majority of disputes will now be settled long before lengthy litigation and will mean businesses and councils can get on with planning budgets, confident they are getting a fair deal.”
Appealing business rates In England and Wales business rates are charged on non-domestic properties such as offices and warehouses.
Bills are paid in February or March for the following tax year.
Currently, businesses can appeal against the rateable value of their business through the Valuation Office Agency.
Under the new system, firms can appeal through three stages: ž
check – all information must be up to date and accurate ž

challenge – providing an alternative valuation and supporting evidence ž

appeal – the opportunity to appeal to an independent valuation tribunal.

A new £300 fee will be charged to lodge an appeal (which is refunded if the appeal is successful). Penalties of up to £500 will be issued for those sending false information.

Talk to Condies today about business rates.


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Condies is a progressive chartered accountancy practice with offices in Dunfermline and Edinburgh. The firm was established in the 1920s and has a growing client base throughout Scotland, ranging from individuals and family businesses to professional partnerships and large commercial companies. Condies offers a range of compliance and value-added services and specialises in a variety of industry sectors.