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Eligibility for Coronavirus business rates grants

For many of our clients rates represent one of the main costs to their business, one which in the current climate could cripple an organisation with no regular income.

Fortunately the Government have stepped in and announced that rates will not be payable for businesses in the retail, leisure, or hospitality sectors for 2020/21. This has been implemented in the form of a 100% business rates discount for the 2020/21 tax year with no rateable value limit on the relief.

As many businesses will have already received their rates invoices for the 2020/21 tax years, local authorities will be reissuing these invoices, inclusive of the rates relief if the business is eligible.

Per the government guidance the following businesses will be eligible for the 100% relief:

  • Shops (florists, bakers, butchers, grocers, jewelers, stationers, off licences, chemists, newsagents, hardware stores, supermarkets, etc.)
  • Charity shops
  • Opticians
  • Post offices
  • Furnishing shops / Display rooms (carpet shops, double glazing, garage doors)
  • Car show rooms
  • Second hand car lots
  • Markets
  • Petrol Stations
  • Garden centers
  • Art galleries (where art is available for sale / hire)
  • Hair and beauty (hair dressers, nail bars, beauty salons, tanning shops etc.)
  • Shoe repairs / Key cutting
  • Travel agents
  • Ticket offices (e.g. for theatre)
  • Dry cleaners
  • Launderettes
  • Domestic appliance repair shops
  • Funeral Directors
  • Photo Processing
  • Tool hire
  • Car hire
  • Restaurants
  • Takeaways
  • Sandwich shops
  • Coffee shops
  • Pubs
  • Bars
  • Cinemas
  • Live music venues
  • Sports grounds and clubs
  • Museums and art galleries
  • Nightclubs
  • Sport and leisure facilities
  • Stately homes and historic houses
  • Theaters
  • Tourist attractions
  • Gyms
  • Public halls
  • Clubhouses, clubs and institutions
  • Hotels, Guest and Boarding houses
  • Holiday homes (run as a business)
  • Caravans

Each of the above premises must be used for a business purpose, else the relief will not be provided. While the list above is not exhaustive it is intended to guide as to whether rates relief will be provided.

Premises that will NOT qualify for the relief include business in the following sectors:

  • Financial services (Banks, building societies, cash points, bureaux de change, payday lenders, betting shops, pawn brokers)
  • Other services (estate agents, letting agents, employment agencies)
  • Medical services (vets, dentists, doctors, osteopaths, chiropractors)
  • Professional services (solicitors, accountants, insurance agents, financial advisers, tutors)
  • Post office sorting offices
  • Casinos and gambling clubs
  • Premises that are not reasonable accessible to visiting members of the public

Where more than one property is occupied, relief will be applied to each of the occupied premises.

If there is a period of no occupation, no rates relief will be provided for that period.

This relief will be a significant benefit to many businesses who are most likely to be impacted by the need to stay at home during the Coronavirus outbreak, easing cashflow worries for many business owners. 


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