Business Rates - Small Business Rate Relief

Small Business Rate Relief is only available to ratepayers who occupy either:
(a) one property, or
(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 combined rateable value of all properties mentioned in (b), must not exceed £17,999 on each day for which relief is being sought. If the rateable value, or combined rateable value, increases above those levels, relief will cease from the day of the increase.

However, from 14 February 2014 the Government has introduced additional support to small businesses. Businesses that take on an additional property which would normally have meant the loss of small business rate relief, will be allowed to keep that relief for a period of 12 months.

What amount of relief is available

The Government introduced a temporary increase in the level of Small Business Rate Relief) available to eligible businesses from October 2010. This temporary increase has now been extended until 31st March 2017.

  • Qualifying properties with a rateable value of not more than £6,000 will be entitled to 100% relief (previously 50%)
  • Qualifying properties with a rateable value more than £6,000 but less than £12,000 will have relief calculated on a sliding scale, a tapered relief of between 100% and 0%, reducing to nil at £12,000
  • Qualifying properties with a rateable value between £12,000 and £18,000 will not have a percentage relief but will have their demand calculated using the small business rate relief multiplier

If an application is granted, provided the ratepayer's circumstances do not change, the application will not need to be renewed until next revaluation of non-domestic premises, which happens every 5 years. Prior to the appropriate year, the Council will identify all ratepayers that are eligible and issue a form automatically. The next revaluation has been postponed and is due in April 2017.

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:

  • the ratepayer taking up occupation of an additional property, and
  • 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

Notification of any changes must be given to the local authority within 4 weeks of the day after the change. If this happens, there will be no interruption to the ratepayer’s entitlement to the relief. A notification that the ratepayer has taken up occupation of an additional property must be by way of a fresh application for relief. Notice of an increase in rateable value must be given in writing.

Throughout the year forms will be issued to ratepayers new to the authority. If you have not received a form and wish to receive a replacement, or want advice concerning this relief, please telephone 0151 934 4360. Alternatively, you can complete the application form in the 'Do it online' section of this page.

Note: If you qualify for another type of mandatory relief (such as mandatory charitable relief), you will not be able to get small business rate relief and the ordinary non-domestic rating multiplier will be used to calculate your rates.

An application will only be considered when you have fully completed the form and provided all required supporting information.

We may also arrange for one of our inspectors to visit the property.

Further advice and help for businesses is available at from Invest Sefton, who can be contacted via the 'related links' section of this page.

If you feel that the rateable value of the property is incorrect you can appeal at any time directly to the valuation office. Details of how to do this can be found in the 'How do I appeal?' section on the rateable value page of this website.

Please note whilst your application is being processed, your current rates are due and payable.

If relief is awarded an amended rates demand will be issued with new payment instructions. This will take account of any payments you have already made.



Last Updated on 22 December 2016

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