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Rate relief for small businesses

Small business rate relief effective from 1 April 2017

Important information for ratepayers for small business rate relief with effect from 1 April 2017.

All businesses must apply/reapply for small business rate relief for the financial year 2017/18.

New business rate bills are coming, we have sent out small business rate relief forms to ratepayers we believe may qualify for this relief. All businesses must complete this form if they want this relief to continue. Businesses are urged to send their completed forms back as a matter of urgency to ensure that the Small Business Rate Relief is included in their rates bill for 2017-18. If you have mislaid your form, or have not received one and you feel you will qualify you can download a form below.

Failure to complete the form will result in no relief being applied to your account and a bill for the full amount being sent

If you are currently in receipt of small business rate relief please be aware that the scheme has been amended and is detailed below. Any current awards of small business rate relief will end on 31 March 2017, so it is important that you apply as soon as possible.

 

Please read these notes carefully before you complete the application form.

 Eligibility criteria

  • the property must meet the criteria on every day that relief is being applied for
  • the property must have a rateable value within the thresholds below
  • the relief is only available to ratepayers who occupy either:
    • Only one non-domestic property in England
    • One main property and other additional properties providing the additional properties

Have rateable values less than £2,900 and the total rateable value of all properties remains under £20,000. Relief is only available on the main property and not the additional properties.

  • small business rate relief is not available to ratepayers who are receiving either Mandatory Rural Rate Relief or Mandatory Charitable Relief.

Amount of Relief

The amount of small business rate relief awarded depends on the rateable value of your property. Following the 2017 revaluation, the small business rate relief rateable value thresholds have increased with effect from 1 April 2017.

A hereditament is defined as “a separate unit of rateable occupation”.

  • qualifying hereditaments with a rateable value of £12,000 or less will get 100% rate relief. This will decrease on a sliding scale of 1% for every £30 of rateable value above £12,000 up to the cut-off point of £15,000 rateable value. In addition the rate bill will be calculated using the lower small business rate multiplier rather than the non-domestic rating multiplier which applies to non-eligible properties.

 

Additional Support

From 1 April 2014 the Government introduced additional support for small businesses.

For those businesses that take on an additional property to expand their business, 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. Please contact the Local Taxation Team on (01539) 793245 for more details.

Applications

To claim the relief from 1 April 2017 please complete the enclosed application. Where the ratepayer is a person, the application must be signed by the ratepayer and in any other case, i.e. a company, it must be signed by a person with authority to sign on behalf of the ratepayer.

Once relief has been awarded, the application need not be renewed. However, there are certain changes in circumstances we will need to know about.

You must notify us if:

  • you occupy any property that you did not occupy at the time of making application for the relief
  • there is an increase in the rateable value of a property you occupy that is not in the South Lakeland area
  • you must notify the council within 4 weeks of the change occurring

The form should be completed and returned to: The Local Taxation Team, South Lakeland House, Lowther Street, Kendal, LA9 4DQ.or emailed to : counciltax@southlakeland.gov.uk

If you have any queries regarding this form then please contact: The Local Taxation Team on (01539) 793245.

 Application Form for Small Business Rate Relief from 1 April 2017 (PDF/22KB/1 page)

 

Small business rate relief up to 31 March 2017

Ratepayers who are not entitled to another mandatory relief, or are liable for unoccupied property rates, and occupy a property with a rateable value which does not exceed £17,999 outside London, or £25,499 within London, will have their bill calculated using the lower small business non-domestic rating multiplier, rather than the standard national non-domestic rating multiplier.

Generally, if the sole or main property is shown on the rating list with a rateable value which does not exceed £12,000, the ratepayer will receive a percentage reduction in their rates bill for this property of up to a maximum of 50% for a property with a rateable value of not more than £6,000. However, until 31 March 2017, the Government has doubled the usual level of relief.

This percentage reduction (relief) is only available to ratepayers who occupy either:

(a) one property

(b) one main property and other additional properties providing those additional properties each have a rateable value which does not exceed £2,599

The rateable value of the property mentioned in (a), or the aggregate rateable value of all the properties mentioned in (b), must not exceed £17,999 outside London or £25,499 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.

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

Where a ratepayer meets the eligibility criteria 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

(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.

To make an application please print, complete and return the small business rate relief application form to the Council. The form also includes further information about the scheme. 

Application Form for Small Business Rate Relief up to 31 March 2017(PDF/63KB/3 pages)