The 2023 rating list for non-domestic properties in England, Wales & Scotland will come into effect on 1 April 2023. The revaluation has seen some surprising rateable value changes particularly in the context of a valuation date of April 2021 for the new rating list, during which time the economy was still recovering from the effects of the pandemic. It also signals a completely different and much more demanding appeal system in Wales – Check, Challenge, Appeal.
Cooke & Arkwright's work on the current 2017 rating list has yielded savings in rate payments in excess of £75 million.
The new assessments can be viewed here or alternatively please call us for informaion and advice.
Check, Challenge, Appeal
The 3-stage process called Check, Challenge, Appeal was implemented in England to coincide with the 2017 Revaluation. The appeal regime in Wales remained unchanged for 2017. Draft legislation is now in place to implement Check, Challenge, Appeal in Wales for 2023.
The Scottish Goverment is also introducing legislation at this Revaluation to fundamentally change the challenge process. In short, the new legistation make it more difficult to challenge whatever Rateable Value is set by the local assessor.
The three stage process is as follows:
Check - An initial administrative enquiry with both parties exchanging factual details to establish that the property’s rating assessment is based on accurate and up-to-date facts. Where it is not possible to agree facts, the disputed matters will be established. Civil penalties for careless, reckless or knowing provision of false information can be imposed.
Time scale: up to 12 months
Challenge – The substantive phase at which point the appellant is required to produce written evidence and a detailed alternative valuation to support a reduction in the assessment. This primarily involves an exchange of rental evidence or building costs. The VOA will only respond to the challenge in a proportionate fashion rather than giving full disclosure of the rental evidence upon which the valuation is based.
Negotiations will then be conducted which may result in a reduction in the assessment. The VOA will issue a decision document. If the ratepayer remains unhappy with the VOA's decision, there is an option to move onto the final appeal stage.
The challenge has a backstop period of 18 months.
Appeal – An appeal to the Valuation Tribunal Service who will recieve copies of the docuaments exchanged in the previous two stages.
There is a charge for access to the Valuation Tribunal in England. No charges will apply in Wales. The case will then be heard and decided by the Tribunal.
The standard of representation and information required to mount a successful Challenge is substantial.
Therefore, having early professional representation is paramount in order to produce a reasoned case for a reduced business rate assessment and to enable accurate future budgeting for the forthcoming years.