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Business Rates - reductions

There are a number of ways your business rates may be reduced.

A scheme that gives small business rate relief is available and can give a reduction of up to 100%.

Part occupation relief

This discretionary relief applies where part of the business property is empty and will remain so for a short time. To apply for this we need a plan detailing the occupied and unoccupied parts, an estimate of how long the empty part will remain so and what you intend to do with the empty part.

If you want to apply please contact the Business Rates section.

Relief for charities and community amateur sports clubs

There is relief of 80% for charities and community amateur sports clubs. Apply for Charitable Rate Relief

If you claim the relief as a community amateur sports club you must be registered as such with HM Revenues and Customs. If you are a sports club which has not yet registered, HM Revenues and Customs will provide more information and advice on how to do so.

Discretionary relief

The council has discretion to award relief of up to 80% to certain non-profit making organisations or a top up of up to 20% to those already in receipt of a charitable relief. Apply for discretionary rate relief for non-profit making organisations.

Hardship relief

Where your business is suffering hardship that has been caused through exceptional circumstances we can give a reduction of up to 100%. When considering an application we will require some form of financial statement. Audited accounts would be best but if these aren't available other documents such as bank statements or cash books may be used. In the case of an individual, we may also require a statement of means.

To help your application we will also need to know what exceptional circumstances caused the hardship and why, in your view, we should reduce your bill. The council must however consider that it is reasonable to reduce or remit having regard to the interest of the persons subject to its council tax. If you want to apply please contact the Business Rates section.

Retail, Hospitality and Leisure Relief

Relief can be awarded to eligible businesses in the Retail, Hospitality and Leisure sectors. It can be awarded for an occupied premises, or where the business occupies multiple premises, the combined relief awarded will be capped at £110,000. Relief for 1 April 2023 to 31 March 2024 will be 75%. For the 2022/2023 financial year this was 50%.

This relief is subject to state subsidy rules. Please see more information on the website as follows
If you want to apply please contact the Business Rates section.

Supporting Small Business Relief

You can get supporting small business relief if both of the following apply:

·         your business property's bill went up because of the most recent revaluation on 1 April 2023

·         you've lost some or all of your small business rate relief or rural rate relief

If you're eligible, your bills will go up by no more than £600 for the 2023 to 2024 tax year.
Sunderland City Council will adjust your bill if you're eligible for this relief.

Changes in your area or other reasons why your rateable value may be reduced 

We are aware that some businesses may have been affected by changes in the locality such as work carried out for the redevelopment of shopping areas or major road works. In such cases it may be advisable to try and get a reduction in rateable value of the property: Business Rate Appeals

Independent advice
Independent debt advice for small businesses, which is free and confidential, is available from Business Debt Line or from the Step Change Debt Charity.

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