10th December 2014
Don’t leave it too late to appeal your business rates
The devil is always in the detail and the nasty spirt of someone red and fiery was lurking in the smaller print of the Chancellor’s Autumn Statement.
Business rates are clearly not flavour of the month at present with widespread calls for reform. There is however one bit of cheer for ratepayers in that if an appeal is successful, then the refund in overpaid rates is backdated to 1 April 2010. The Chancellor’s Statement has put paid to this by announcing that these backdated refunds will shortly be curtailed.
The new rules which are currently being drafted mean that if an appeal is submitted after 1 April 2015, the amount of backdated refund will be restricted to this date.
Alan Morrish, business rates partner at Alder King, said “Whilst a number of ratepayers have already appealed against their assessments, a good number have not. The real issue for many ratepayers is that of late there have been a number of ground-breaking tribunal decisions which have reduced assessments most considerably. Those ratepayers who haven’t appealed could be paying far too much in rates and to compound the agony after 31 March next year the government will effectively keep hold of five years of overpayment.
“There is however still a window to submit a backdated appeal and businesses should consider whether an appeal is warranted sooner rather than later.”