Coronavirus - Rates Reliefs and Business Grants

The UK Government have made a number of schemes available to businesses in response to the Coronavirus pandemic. Please click the links below to find out more on each : 

Coronavirus - Rates Relief

Expanded Retail Relief Scheme

As you will be aware the Government has announced a number of schemes to support businesses during the disruption caused by the Coronavirus outbreak. Amongst these is the Expanded Retail Relief Discount for 2020/2021 which reduces the Rates Liability to £0 for eligible properties for the period 01/04/2020 to 31/03/2021 regardless of Rateable Value in England.

The government has issued guidance which sets out the eligibility criteria that central government has set for the Expanded Retail Discount. A full copy of the Guidance can be downloaded from the Government’s website here by clicking here.

Who is Eligible?

The definition of Retail is very broad and some (but not all!) qualifying properties are listed below.

Art galleries (where art is for sale/hire) Dry cleaners Launderettes Public Halls Theatres
Bars Employment agencies Live Music Venues Pubs Ticket offices e.g. for theatre
Betting shops Estate agents and letting agents Markets Restaurants Tool hire
Car hire Funeral directors Museums and art galleries Sandwich shops Tourist attractions
Car/caravan show rooms Furnishing shops/ display rooms Nightclubs Second-hand car lots Travel agents
Caravan parks and sites Garden centres Opticians Shoe repairs/key cutting Wellness centres, spas, massage parlours
Casinos, gambling clubs and bingo halls Gyms PC/TV/domestic appliance repair Sport and leisure facilities  
Charity shops Hair and beauty services (such as: hairdressers, nail bars, tanning shops) Petrol stations Sports grounds and clubs  
Clubhouses, Clubs and Institutions Holiday homes Photo processing Stately homes and historic houses  
Coffee shops Hotels, Guest and Boarding Houses Post offices Takeaways  

What if my property's use is not included in the list?

The guidance states that the list above is not exhaustive and if your use falls outside of this then a decision would be made at the Council's discretion. There is more information in the guidance document which can be downloaded by clickng here.

Do I need to apply for the relief?

In most cases no, the rates bills for 2020/2021 will be recalculated and issued automatically by your local council. However, if you have not received an updated bill during April, and you think you qualify then we would advise contacting your local council in the first instance. We would also be happy to make representations on your behalf, please email email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or call our office on 0113 286 7006.

Coronavirus - Grants

Retail and Small Business Grants

There are two sets of Grants the government has made available as a result of Coronavirus, the Small Business Grant and the Retail, Hospitality and Leisure Grant. A full copy of the guidance to local authorities can be downloaded from the government’s website by clicking here.

Small Business Grant

Eligibility

Under the Small Business Grant all businesses in England in receipt of Small Business Rates Relief (SBRR) and Rural Rates Relief (RRR) in the business rates system will be eligible for a payment of £10,000.

You will know if you receive Small Business Rates Relief by checking your rates bill which should show a discount which may show on the bill as SBRR Discount. If you are in receipt of this relief as at the 11th of March 2020 then you are eligibile.

Applying for the Grant

You do not need to apply and your local authority should contact you in due course.

Who will receive the grant?

The person who according to the billing authority’s records was the ratepayer in respect of the property as at the 11 March 2020.

Retail, Hospitality and Leisure Grant

Eligibility

The property must firstly qualify for Retail Relief, then the Rateable Value of the property must be below £51,000. The grant can then be split as follows :

  • If the Rateable Value is between £15,000 and £51,000 then the property is eligible for a grant of £25,000.
  • If the Rateable Value is below £15,000 then the property qualifies for a £10,000 grant.

Applying for the Grant

Local authorities generally have application processes, please check on your council's website to access the form.

Who will receive the grant?

The person who according to the billing authority’s records was the ratepayer in respect of the property as at the 11 March 2020.

Can I receive both grants?

No. The guidance states that only one grant per property can be awarded.