Information

Local government finance circular 4/2022 - non-domestic rates relief: guidance

This circular provides general information relating to current arrangements for non-domestic rates reliefs in 2022 to 2023. It also provides examples of supporting documentary evidence. The information was compiled with the involvement of officers from COSLA and the IRRV.

This document is part of a collection


Footnotes

1. www.saa.gov.uk

2. Section 238 of the Local Government (Scotland) Act 1947, section 238(1): "In respect of each rate levied by them every rating authority shall fix a date on or before which any person may lodge with the officer of the authority designated for the purpose an appeal against the rates claimed from him on the ground that he is being improperly charged, and another date on which the appeals shall be heard by the rating authority or a committee thereof."

3. Chapter 3 (subsidy control) of Title XI of Heading One in Part Two of the Trade and Cooperation Agreement.

4. The TCA at Article 3.2:4 refers to the SDR limits as "over any period of three fiscal years".

5. The Non-Domestic Rating (Valuation of Utilities) (Scotland) Order 2005.

6. Awarded under section 4(5)(a) of the Local Government (Financial Provisions etc.) (Scotland) Act 1962.

7. Awarded under section 4(5)(b) of the Local Government (Financial Provisions etc.) (Scotland) Act 1962.

8. Awarded under section 4(5)(a) of the Local Government (Financial Provisions etc.) (Scotland) Act 1962.

9. Awarded under section 4(5)(c) of the Local Government (Financial Provisions etc.) (Scotland) Act 1962.

10. Awarded under section 140 of the Community Empowerment (Scotland) Act 2015.

11. This is not explicitly tied to changes in planning use and local authorities' interpretations may differ.

12. The following is a link to the website of OSCR, www.oscr.org.uk/charities/search-scottish-charity-register

13. Section 4(2) of the Local Government (Financial Provisions etc.) (Scotland) Act 1962.

14. Section 4(5)(a) of the Local Government (Financial Provisions etc.) (Scotland) Act 1962.

15. Section 4(5)(b) of the Local Government (Financial Provisions etc.) (Scotland) Act 1962.

16. Section 10(2) of the Non Domestic Rates (Scotland) Act 2020.

17. Defined in section 29(1) of the Education (Additional Support for Learning) (Scotland) Act 2004.

18. The Non-Domestic Rates (Scotland) Act 2020 (Commencement No. 2, Transitional and Saving Provisions) Amendment Regulations 2021.

19. Eligibility is currently due to expire on 30 June 2023 under The Non-Domestic Rates (Levying and Miscellaneous Amendments) (Scotland) Regulations 2021.

20. Section 24A of the Local Government (Scotland) Act 1966.

21. The Non-Domestic Rates (District Heating Relief and Renewable Energy Generation Relief) (Scotland) Amendment Regulations 2021.

22. Section 24(4) of the Local Government (Scotland) Act 1966.

23. Section 24A of the Local Government (Scotland) Act 1966, and the Non-Domestic Rating (Unoccupied Property) (Scotland) Regulations 1994.

24. Section 24B of the Local Government (Scotland) Act 1966.

25. The Health Protection (Coronavirus) (Restrictions) (Scotland) Regulations 2020. require the restriction of use of businesses selling food or drink for consumption on the premises, and business listed in Part 2 of schedule 1 which include e.g. cinemas, theatres, nightclubs and barbers, to protect against the risks to public health arising from coronavirus. The restriction lasts until a direction is given by the Scottish Ministers or the expiry of the Regulations which is 6 months from the date they came into force - 26 March 2020. The Scottish Ministers are required to keep the need for these restrictions under review. In many cases the premises the use of which is restricted during COVID-19 may continue using their premises for storage purposes and may therefore not be classed as either empty or unoccupied. Proprietors, tenants and occupiers are not prohibited from occupying these premises or allowing them to be occupied - they are being prohibited from opening the premises and using them in particular ways.

26. For instance, In the case of Makro Properties Ltd v Nuneaton and Bedworth BC [2012] EWHC 2250 (Admin), the High Court held that storage of paperwork by an occupier in just 0.2% of the floor space in a 140,000 square foot warehouse was sufficient to amount to "rateable occupation" so as to entitle the owner to empty rates relief upon vacation by the occupier.

27. Eligibility is currently due to expire on 31 March 2023 as set out in The Non-Domestic Rates (Levying and Miscellaneous Amendment) (Scotland) Regulations 2022.

28. The following is a link to a Scottish Government publication of the boundaries of the various Enterprise Areas and their focused industry, https://www.gov.scot/publications/enterprise-areas-maps/

29. These may instead claim enhanced capital allowances enabling businesses to claim up to 100% of the cost of certain qualifying investments in plants and machinery against the businesses' taxable profits.

30. The Non-Domestic Rates (Telecommunications and Canals) (Scotland) Amendment Order 2016 provides that masts to which the relief applies receive separate entries in the valuation roll.

31. The following is a link to a Scottish Government publication of the list of grid references of locations of mobile masts that are eligible for non-domestic rates relief, https://www.gov.scot/publications/4g-infill-programme-non-domestic-rates-relief-mobile-masts/

32. The Non-Domestic Rating (Telecommunications New Fibre Infrastructure) (Scotland) Order 2019 provides that new fibre infrastructure installed after 1 April 2019 receives separate entries in the valuation roll.

33. This was extended in the Non-Domestic Rates (Levying and Miscellaneous Amendment) (Scotland) Regulations 2022

34. Section 4(5)(b) of the Local Government (Financial Provisions etc.) (Scotland) Act 1962.

35. This was amended to 0.5 megawatt by The Non-Domestic Rates (Renewable Energy Generation Relief) (Scotland) Amendment Regulations 2017. It was 1 megawatt prior to 1 April 2017.

36. The Non-Domestic Rates (Renewable Energy Generation Relief) (Scotland) Amendment Regulations 2016.

37. The Non-Domestic Rates (Renewable Energy Generation Relief) (Scotland) Amendment Regulations 2018.

38. The Non-Domestic Rates (District Heating Relief and Renewable Energy Generation Relief) (Scotland) Amendment Regulations 2021.

39. This increased Rural Rate Relief 100% for qualifying businesses (previously this was split 50% mandatory and 50% discretionary).

40. Subject to legislative definitions.

41. Ratepayer is not also the ratepayer for another property of the same type in Scotland.

42. Eligibility is currently due to expire 31 March 2023.

43. The following is a link to a UK Government publication of sports clubs registered with HMRC as community amateur sports clubs as of April 2018, https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/community-amateur-sports-clubs-casc-registered-with-hmrc--2

44. Section 4(5)(a) of the Local Government (Financial Provisions etc.) (Scotland) Act 1962.

45. Section 4(5)(c) of the Local Government (Financial Provisions etc.) (Scotland) Act 1962.

46. And must have been so used on 31 March 2017 (or, if unoccupied on that date, so used when last occupied).

Contact

Email: NDR@gov.scot

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