What is it?
The UK government is temporarily increasing the Business Rates discount to all businesses in the retail, hospitality and leisure sectors in England to 100% for 2020-21, irrespective of rateable value. Businesses that received the retail discount in the 2019 to 2020 tax year will be rebilled by their local authority as soon as possible.
There may be some variations among the devolved nations. In Northern Ireland there will be a three–month rates holiday for all business ratepayers, excluding public sector and utilities. The effect of this is that no rates will be charged for Q2 2020 and will be shown as a 25% discount on the annual rate bill. Business rate bills will also not be issued until June 2020. In Wales, retail, leisure and hospitality businesses with a rateable value of £51,000 or less will receive a 100% business rates discount.
Am I eligible?
You are eligible for the business rates holiday if your business is in the retail, hospitality and/or leisure sector. Properties that will benefit from the relief will be occupied hereditaments that are wholly or mainly being used: as shops, restaurants, cafes, drinking establishments, cinemas and live music venues, for assembly and leisure, as hotels, guest & boarding premises and self-catering accommodation. For more information on eligibility please refer to the Expanded Retail Discount 2020/21: Coronavirus Response – Local Authority Guidance.
What do I need to do to access it?
There is no action for you. This will apply to your next bill in April 2020. However, local authorities may have to reissue your bill automatically to exclude the business rate charge.
Who do I need to speak to?
In England, speak to your local authority (likely to be the billing authority for rates).For details on accessing schemes in the devolved nations follow the links at the bottom of the document.