Warning issued over business rates appeals scam

Warning issued over business rates appeals scam
Dan Martin
Dan MartinDan Martin Content & Events

Posted: Thu 20th Jun 2024

Business owners have been warned to avoid false claims by agents that the deadline to appeal business rates valuation is 30 June.

Business owners are able to challenge the valuation of their property for the purposes of calculating the amount of business rates they need to pay.

The Valuation Office Agency (VOA), which looks after the process in England and Wales, said it is aware of claims by agents, who help firms appeal, that the deadline for appeals to the 2023 rating lists is 30 June.

This is not true as businesses are generally able to challenge a property valuation on the 2023 list at any time until March 2026.

VOA said businesses should be cautious of any agent who:

  • tries to pressure you to make a decision or sign a contract

  • makes claims about 'unclaimed credits' or similar

  • says they are acting on behalf of the VOA

  • demands large sums of money up front

The VOA has published new guidance for how businesses can stay safe from scammers.

The organisation said:

"The vast majority of agents are reputable and provide a good service. But a small minority act in bad faith.

"We collect evidence of poor agent behaviour and practices in the course of our work. This evidence allows us to proactively address issues or concerns.

"If you are concerned about potential misrepresentation by agents, send any evidence to"

You don't have to use an agent to manage business rates and can do it yourself.

However, if you decide to work with an agent, VOA has a checklist for choosing one.

Dan Martin
Dan MartinDan Martin Content & Events
I'm a freelance content creator and event host who helps small businesses and the organisations that support them. I'm also Enterprise Nation's Local Leader for Bristol. I have 20 years of experience as a small business journalist having interviewed hundreds of entrepreneurs from famous names like Sir Richard Branson and Deborah Meaden to the founders behind brand new start-ups. I've worked for a range of leading small business publications and support groups, most recently as head of content at Enterprise Nation where I was responsible for the prolific output of content on the company's blog and social media. I now freelance for Enterprise Nation as the website's news reporter and as the host of the Small Business sessions podcast. I'm based in Bristol where I run and host regular events with the local small business community in my role as Enterprise Nation's Local Leader for Bristol. I also have strong connections with other major business organisations in the south west region. In total, I've hosted over 100 events including conferences with an audience of hundreds for international brands like Xero and Facebook and live web chats from inside 10 Downing Street. With my partner, I co-run Lifestyle District, a lifestyle blog focused on culture, art, theatre and photography.

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