How to make a rating appeal for commercial premises

1. Check the facts

Quite often the initial reaction is that there should be “nothing to lose” in lodging an appeal. However, this is not always the case and the making of an appeal could prompt the discovery of inaccuracies in the present assessment that may in fact result in a higher rateable value. The first step is therefore to interrogate the Valuation Office website and cross refer the rateable value assessment to such issues as the actual floor areas, valuation breakdown, the Valuation Scheme Reference and comparable properties.

2. Making the Appeal

Once satisfied that the rateable value is over assessed and not representative of the rental value of the subject property as at the Antecedent Valuation Date, (1st April, 2008 for the 2010 Rating List and 1st April, 2015 for the 2017 Rating List), the next action is to go online and make the appeal. As part of this process, it is important to set out the requested information and provide the full reasons for the Appeal.

3. Programming

Once the Valuation Office has accepted the validity of the Proposal to alter the Rating List, they will then consider the grounds of the appeal and if an agreement cannot be reached, the Proposal will be referred to the Valuation Tribunal. The Valuation Office will then enter the Appeal into a Programme for similar properties and setting out a Target Date for the completion of negotiations.

4. Negotiations

At this stage it will be necessary to undertake full and detailed discussions with the Valuation Office with regards to the grounds of your appeal and the supporting evidence, with the “burden of
proof” lying with the ratepayer as the Appellant.

5. Valuation Tribunal

Where it is not possible to reach agreement with the Valuation Office the Appeal will proceed to the Valuation Tribunal. In this respect, the Appellant is required to submit a Statement of Case
more than six weeks before the Tribunal date setting out the full basis of the appeal and supporting evidence in a structured report that fully complies with the Valuation Tribunal Practice Statements. The  Valuation Office will also issue the respondent’s Statement of Case and both Statements will form an integral part of the respective submissions at the Tribunal Hearing. Most appeals do not proceed beyond the Valuation Tribunal, although there is a right for the parties attending Tribunal to take any case further to the Upper Tribunal (Lands Chamber).

 

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