Check, Challenge, Appeal

A new process since 1 April 2017, there are several stages and the burden of proof is on the Appellant. You must be registered on the VOA portal to start.

Historic refunds

Orphaned NNDR accounts? Overpayment due to inaccurate 2005/2010 RV adopted for Transitional Relief? Empty rates using wrong void periods? Backdated liability cancellation?

VOA Registration service

To change your Rateable Value you must register on the VOA Business Rates portal. It is a multi-stage process of i.d. verification and property claim.

minimize your empty rates

Staying completely within the Law, we can tailor a programme of actions to save you money now and plan for the future.

Transparent fee structure

We offer a transparent fee structure for the Check & Challenge stages of reducing your business rates liability.  Percentages are applied to the savings in rates payable over the life of the Rating List.

No performance related fees are acceptable if your case goes to a Valuation Tribunal, a new fee would have to be agreed at that stage should you wish us to appear on your behalf.

£295

Initial Survey & VOA Registration

  • On-site meeting
  • Capture survey data
  • Register on VOA Portal
  • Claim up to 5 properties
  • 3 months support

25%

RV under £60,000

  • Measured survey
  • Submission of "Check"
  • Negotiation with VOA
  • Start "Challenge"
  • Report savings

20%

RV over £60,000

  • Measured survey
  • Submission of "Check"
  • Negotiation
  • start "Challenge"
  • Report savings

Frequently asked questions

Truth:  It is a substantial cost to us to provide a Chartered Surveyor to visit you and discuss your trade and look at your detailed profit & loss accounts, discuss material changes in the locality and inspect your property.  That part we do for free.

In return, should it be appropriate for you to engage us to take your case forwards, we both sign terms of engagement, we carry out the initial stages of registration, claiming your property and submitting a “Check”.  At that point we charge £295.

We are proud of our standards of advice and should we be concerned that you might be under-assessed, we will tell you at the beginning.  There is no point taking unnecessary risks that could result in your Rateable Value being increased from either party’s’ point of view.

Sometimes you will receive a “Notice Requesting Information: Non-Domestic Rating” from the VOA seeking details of your occupation/lease/turnover etc.  These are time consuming to complete on your behalf and we charge £135 per form to complete them for you – if you ask us to.

This is out of our hands.  Following recent decisions of the Upper Tribunal (Lands Chamber) an expert witness cannot give expert evidence to the Court/Tribunal is he is rewarded on a scale related to the outcome – this prejudices his evidence and damages your case.

Very few cases are heard by the Valuation Tribunal, if yours is likely to be one of them, you will have ample time to decide whether you wish to take the matter further or just stick with the result from the “Check” and “Challenge” stages.  More information about “Check, Challenge, Appeal” can be found here [read more].

The initial £295 fee is payable once the first “Check” has been served under the Check, Challenge Appeal procedures.  By this time a lot of work will have been completed on your behalf.

The performance related fees (the percentage fees) are payable after the Local Authority issues your revised rate demand(s) or a refund.

We practise as Chartered Surveyors, and are regulated by the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors.  We have a complaints handling procedure and operate under the RICS Dispute Resolution service. [more information].

Representing you in respect of Business Rates is an RICS Regulated activity.  By starting the Check, Challenge Appeal process (CCA) you are not necessarily bound to take the dispute to the Valuation Tribunal, this decision is yours.

Business rates can increase if the VOA discover an error in their survey or change their mind on their own valuation – there are no guarantees that your Rateable Value will be reduced, – be very wary of those  who do not illustrate this risk.

Always use a Chartered Surveyor.

What do I need to get started?

1. Terms of Engagement

We ask you to sign a fair, RICS regulated, terms of engagement that clearly sets out our instructions from you

3. Copies of Rate Demands

Not all reductions in your business rates liability comes from reducing your Rateable Value, we will analyse your rate demand for alternative savings.

2. Letter of authority

We will contact your Local Authority with any bill calculation queries and make any necessary applications on your behalf.

4. Inspection &/or Appraisal

To establish whether you have a case, we need to appraise your property, understand what rent is being paid and if you physically changed the property.

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We represent Ratepayers in London and in the South West & South East.