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Business Rate Reliefs

This page provides information about Business Rates reductions that can be claimed. The page includes two downloadable forms in respect of mandatory and discretionary rate relief and small business rate relief.

Mandatory and discretionary rate relief

The following rate relief can be applied for with this form:

Mandatory and Discretionary Rate Relief (PDF Document, 80.77 Kb)

Unoccupied property rating

Business rates will not be payable in the first three months that a property is empty. This is extended to six months for certain industrial properties. After this period, rates are payable in full unless the unoccupied property rate has been reduced by the Government by order. In most cases, the unoccupied property rate is zero for properties owned by charities and community amateur sports clubs. In addition, there are a number of exemptions from the empty property rate. Full details on exemptions can be obtained from the business rates section at the Council. If the unoccupied property rate for the financial year has been reduced by order, it will be shown on the front of your bill.

Partly occupied property relief

A ratepayer is liable for the full non-domestic rate whether a property is wholly occupied or only partly occupied. Where a property is partly occupied for a short time, the Council has discretion in certain cases to award relief in respect of the unoccupied part. Full details can be obtained from the business rates section at the Council.

Charity and registered community amateur sports club relief

Charities and registered community amateur sports clubs are entitled to 80 percent relief where the property is occupied by the charity or club and is wholly or mainly used for charitable purposes or as a registered community amateur sports club.

The Council has discretion to give further relief on the remaining bill. Full details can be obtained from the business rates section at the Council, download mandatory and discretionary rate relief application form.

Non-profit making organisation relief

The local authority has discretion to give relief to non-profit making organisations. Full details can be obtained from the business rates section at the Council, download mandatory and discretionary rate relief application form.

Hardship relief

The Council has discretion to give relief in special circumstances. Full details can be obtained from the business rates section at the Council.

Small business rate relief

Ratepayers who occupy a property with a rateable value which does not exceed £50,999 (and who are not entitled to other mandatory relief or are liable for unoccupied property rates) will have their bills calculated using the lower small business non-domestic rating multiplier, rather than the national non-domestic rating multiplier.

In addition, generally, if the sole or main property is shown on the rating list with a rateable value which does not exceed £15,000, the ratepayer will receive a percentage reduction in their rates bill for this property of up to a maximum of 100%. For a property with a rateable value of not more than £12,000, the ratepayer will receive a 100% reduction in their rates bill.

Generally, this percentage reduction (relief) is only available to ratepayers who occupy either-

(a) one property, or

(b) one main property and other additional properties providing those additional properties each have a rateable value which does not exceed £2,899.

The rateable value of the property mentioned in (a), or the aggregate rateable value of all the properties mentioned in (b), must not exceed £19,999 outside London or £27,999 in London on each day for which relief is being sought. If the rateable value, or aggregate rateable value, increases above those levels, relief will cease from the day of the increase.

The Government has introduced additional support to small businesses. For those businesses that take on an additional property which would normally have meant the loss of small business rate relief, the Government has confirmed that they will be allowed to keep that relief for a period of 12 months.

An application for Small Business Rate Relief is not required. Where a ratepayer meets the eligibility criteria and has not received the relief they should contact their local authority. Provided the ratepayer continues to satisfy the conditions for relief which apply at the relevant time as regards the property and the ratepayer, they will automatically continue to receive relief in each new valuation period.

Certain changes in circumstances will need to be notified to the local authority by a ratepayer who is in receipt of relief (other changes will be picked up by the local authority). The changes which should be notified are—

(a) the ratepayer taking up occupation of an additional property, and

(b) an increase in the rateable value of a property occupied by the ratepayer in an area other than the area of the local authority which granted the relief.

Full details on the eligibility criteria and on how to apply for this relief are available from the business rates section at the Council, download a Single Business Rate Relief application.

Small Business Rates Relief Application 2017 (Word Document, 869.44 Kb)

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