Please Note: This Article is 4 years old. This increases the likelihood that some or all of it's content is now outdated.

The Businesses rate appeals process is to be reformed to streamline the system says Department for Communities and Local Government (DCLG) minister Greg Clark.

Businesses will benefit from a quicker and more efficient service when checking and challenging their business rates bills with the reforms confirmed today (6 July 2016) by Secretary of State Greg Clark. The new process will consist of:

  • a new simple online service that will allow customers to provide information and track progress of their check or challenge,
  • a new tailored package to support small businesses, and
  • a system to weed out speculative appeals

The new process follows a period of consultation where the majority of respondents recognised the need for change. The government says it will now press ahead with streamlining the appeals system in England.

The new “check, challenge, appeal” process will help prevent speculative appeals, and make sure genuine disputes are settled more quickly for all involved DCLG claims.

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At present, the vast majority of cases do not lead to a successful appeal and fewer than 2% of the business rates appeals precede to a Tribunal hearing.

These moves will also bring added security to councils when planning their budgets says DCLG. It follows the launch of a consultation, which sets the course towards councils’ self-sufficiency and the retention of 100% of local taxes by 2020.

Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government Greg Clark said:

“For too long we’ve had an appeals system where backlogged cases – often caused by unscrupulous agents eyeing up a fast buck – meant unnecessary costs and uncertainty for all involved.

“That’s why we are going ahead with our plans to streamline the process and help resolve cases as quickly and fairly as possible.

“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.”

Read the full Government statement on business rates appeals here

Please Note: This Article is 4 years old. This increases the likelihood that some or all of it's content is now outdated.
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