If you pay business rates, you may be eligible for rate relief.
There are several types of relief available:
High Street Retail Relief (HSRR)
A new scheme has been introduced by the Welsh Government (WG) to provide rate relief for certain types of businesses who were in occupation of their premises on 31st March2017 and 1st April 2017 and have an RV below 50,001. The “Wales High Street Relief Scheme” provides £10 million funding across Wales to help reduce rates bills for high street ratepayers i.e. retailers, food and drink premises. The scheme is intended to operate for the 2017/18 financial year only. Signed application forms must be received before 31st March 2018 to be considered.
Eligibility under the High Street Relief Scheme will be focused on those businesses that have seen increases in their liability as a result of the 2017 Non Domestic Rates revaluation, as well as businesses on high streets whose rates are falling but may be struggling as a result of economic conditions and competition from online and out-of-town providers and receive small business rates relief or transitional rates relief.
Guidelines provided by Welsh Government can be accessed below and provide details as to the types of premises that may fall under the scheme.
If you have not received any details regarding this scheme and believe you may qualify, please contact the Council’s Non-Domestic Rating team on- (01443) 425002.
Small business rates relief (SBRR)
From 1 st October 2010 the Welsh Government temporarily increased the level of relief available to small businesses in Wales. The current scheme has been extended until 31 st March 2018.
Fully occupied business premises with a rateable value up to £6,000 will receive 100% relief and those with a rateable value between £6,001 and £12,000 will receive relief that will be reduced on a tapered basis from 100% to zero.
You do not need to apply to the Council for this relief; if you are entitled to the small business rates relief you will be automatically awarded it and it will be shown on your rates bill.
Registered Charities and registered Community Amateur Sports Clubs (CASC’s) can apply for charitable relief. If you are entitled to this relief you will receive a mandatory 80% reduction in your rates bill.
The Council also has the discretion to ‘top up’ the remaining 20% of your rates bill with discretionary rates relief.
Discretionary rates relief
Not for profit organisations can apply for discretionary rates relief and receive up to 100% relief on their rates bill. The level of relief given will depend on the type of organisation you are.
The types of organisations that the Council’s policy is aimed at are:
Most business properties will be liable to pay business rates even when they are empty. However, there are some exemptions to this rule:
- properties will be exempt for the first three months after they become vacant, or six months for industrial premises
- listed buildings are exempt until they become occupied again
- buildings with a rateable value under £2,600 are exempt until they become occupied again
- properties owned by charities are exempt if its next use is likely to be wholly or mainly for charitable purposes
- community amateur sports club buildings are exempt if their next use is likely to be wholly or mainly a sports club
The Council has discretionary powers to award hardship relief to business ratepayers. However, any award of hardship relief must be in the interests of the council taxpayers of Rhondda Cynon Taf as they will meet 25% of the cost.
Hardship relief cannot be awarded on the basis of the general economic or market conditions, and hardship relief is only intended as a short term measure.
Following the 2017 non-domestic rates revaluation by the Valuation Office Agency, transitional relief will be implemented to support ratepayers whose eligibility for Small Business Rate Relief (SBRR) will be affected as a result of the revaluation.
The transitional relief scheme will be introduced to assist ratepayers in receipt of SBRR on 31 March 2017, experiencing a reduction in the percentage of SBRR they are entitled to on 1 April 2017, due to increases in their rateable value following the revaluation.
SBRR will be applied prior to transitional relief. The transitional relief will work by phasing in any resultant increases in liability over a 3 year period (25% of increased liability in year 1, 50% in year 2 and 75% in year 3.
Eligible ratepayers are those:
- moving from full SBRR to partial SBRR
- moving from full SBRR to no SBRR
- moving from partial SBRR to no SBRR
- staying within partial SBRR but seeing an increase in rateable value
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