Business rate relief schemes - Retail, hospitality & leisure relief

Important information about extended retail, hospitality and leisure discount

At the Budget on 3 March 2021, the Chancellor announced that eligible ratepayers would receive a discount on their business rates bills for the year 2021/22 of 100% for the first three months and 66% for the remainder of the year.

This 100% discount ended on 30th June 2021. A revised bill was issued from 1st July 2021 to 31st March 2022.

66% discount from 1st July 2021 to 31st March 2022

In line with the conditions set by the government for the funding of this relief, ratepayers may for the period from 1 July 2021 onwards only claim up to £2 million of Expanded Retail Discount in 2021/22 for hereditaments which based on the coronavirus rules at 5 January would have been required to be closed and £105,000 for other eligible properties (up to a cap of £2 million for all properties). This cash cap applied at a Group company level (so holding companies and subsidiaries cannot claim up to the cash cap for each company) and also to organizations which, although not a company, have such an interest in a company that they would, if they were a company, result in its being the holding company.

If you (or if appropriate a company in your Group) have received Expanded Retail Discount on any other property then you should contact the Council at customer.services@bassetlaw.gov.uk to advise the Council of any other Expanded Retail Discount you are being granted for premises. You will need to confirm that the award of Expanded Retail Discount does not exceed the cash cap for 2021/22.

If you have exceeded the cash cap on other properties and wish to refuse the Expanded Retail Discount granted, please contact the Council at customer.services@bassetlaw.gov.uk. This may be particularly relevant to those premises that are part of a large chain, where the cumulative total of Expanded Retail Discount received could exceed the cash cap.

The government and Bassetlaw District Council will not tolerate any business falsifying their records or providing false evidence to gain this discount, including claiming support above the cash cap. A ratepayer who falsely applies for any relief, or provides false information or makes false representation in order to gain relief may be guilty of fraud under the Fraud Act 2006.

Autumn Budget 2021 business rates measures for 2022/23 at the Budget on 27 October 2021

The Chancellor announced that the Government would provide a package of business rates measures to support businesses in England. For 2022/23 the Chancellor set out:

  • A new relief for eligible retail, hospitality and leisure properties with 50% relief on rates bills up to £110,000 per business
  • A freezing of the multipliers at 49.9p (small business multiplier) and 51.2p (standard multiplier)
  • The extension of the current Transitional Relief and Supporting Small Business schemes

The scope of the discount for 2022/23 will return to pre-Covid-19 eligibility for retail properties. Hospitality and leisure properties will continue to remain in scope. Further details on the eligibility for the scheme will be included in further guidance in March 2022.

These changes will have effect from April 2022 to March 2023. Local authorities will be expected to use their discretionary relief powers (under section 47 of the Local Government Finance Act 1988 as amended) to grant the discount in line with the relevant eligibility criteria and should appear on the 2022/23 bills.

Retail discount

Introduced in 2019, this relief provided a discount of one third of the Business Rates bill. Available to occupied retail properties with rateable values of less than £51,000.

In response to the covid-19 emergency the Government have announced that qualifying retail businesses will pay no Business rates for the year 2020/21.

In response to the continued covid-19 emergency the Government have announced that additional business rates support would be provided for eligible retail, hospitality, leisure and nursery business in England occupying a qualifying property and announced that for the year 2021/22:

  • The Expanded Retail Discount (2020/21) will be extended for three months for eligible properties, at 100% relief, uncapped, for the period 1 April 2021 to 30 June 2021.
  • From 1 July 2021 to 31 March 2022, the Expanded Retail Discount would apply at 66% relief for eligible properties in the scheme, with a cash cap of £2m for businesses that were required to close as at 5 January 2021, and up to £105,000 for business permitted to open at that date.
  • The Nursery Discount 2021 would also be extended for three months, at 100%, uncapped, for the period 1 April 2021 to 30 June 2021.
  • From 1 July 2021 to 31 March 2022 the Nursery Discount would apply at 66% relief for eligible properties, with a cash cap of £105,000.
  • For the Expanded Retail Discount 2021/22 and Nursery Discount 2021/22, businesses may choose to opt out of support by providing billing authorities notification of their request to refuse support, per eligible hereditament.

Please contact the Business Rates team on (01909) 533460 if you have not received the relief and believe that you are entitled to it.

The Government guidelines state that to be eligible for the discount the retail premises must be:

  • occupied (empty premises do not qualify)
  • have an occupied rates charge for the year (properties receiving 100% Small Business Rate Relief, for example, do not qualify)
  • be wholly, or mainly, used for retail purposes for visiting members of the public

Qualifying retail uses include:

  • shops
  • post offices
  • car showrooms
  • car hire premises
  • opticians
  • petrol stations
  • restaurants
  • cafes
  • Pubs
  • Bars
  • Garden centres
  • Markets
  • Hairdressers, beauty and tanning salons, nail bars
  • Shoe repairs/key cutting
  • Travel Agents
  • Dry cleaners
  • Cinemas (from 2020 only)
  • Live music venues (from 2020 only)
  • Leisure premises (gyms, museums, galleries, nightclubs etc… from 2020 only)
  • Hospitality premises (hotels and guesthouses etc… from 2020 only)

This is not an exhaustive list, please contact the Business Rates Unit if you are unsure whether your business will qualify for this discount.

Do all businesses qualify for relief?

No. The government has identified certain retail uses that do not qualify for the discount, Your premises will not get a discount if it’s being used for the following:

  • Financial services, such as banks, building societies, cash points
  • Individual cash points and retail units with only cash points in them
  • Bureaux de change
  • Payday lenders
  • Betting shops
  • Pawn brokers
  • Estate agents
  • Letting agents
  • Employment agencies
  • Dentists
  • Doctors
  • Osteopaths
  • Chiropractors
  • Vets
  • Solicitors
  • Accountants
  • Insurance agents
  • Financial advisers
  • Post Office sorting offices
  • Other properties that are not reasonably accessible to visiting members of the public

State aid

Awards such as Retail Discount are required to comply with the EU law on State Aid. You are required to notify the Council if you have received any other de minimis State Aid and the award of aid in total exceeds €200,000 which has been granted over a 3 year period (comprising of 2020/21, 2019/20 and 2018/19). You must let the Business Rates Unit know if the award of retail discount means that your state aid exceeds €200,000.

Further information on state aid law can be found on the GOV.UK website.

 

 

 


Last Updated on Monday, December 13, 2021