Coronavirus pandemic prompts one-year business rates holiday

March 2020

Most small businesses in England will pay no business rates in 2020/21 in the wake of the coronavirus outbreak in the UK.

Chancellor Rishi Sunak announced in last month’s Spring Budget that almost half of small firms will have a one-year business rates holiday.

As part of financial measures announced to limit the economic impacts of COVID-19, the holiday extends to all businesses in the retail, leisure and hospitality sectors.

Firms that qualify for the retail discount can access cash grants of up to £25,000, while all small businesses eligible for small business rates relief can obtain grants of up to £10,000.

The Chancellor said:

“Every shop, pub, theatre, music venue, restaurant – and any other business in the retail, hospitality or leisure sector, irrespective of their rateable value – will pay no business rates whatsoever for 12 months, and if they have a rateable value of less than £51,000, they can now get a cash grant as well.”

Helen Dickinson, chief executive at the British Retail Consortium, said:

“The business rates holiday, together with a loan package, represents a vital shot in the arm for a sector facing enormous uncertainty.”

The Chancellor confirmed another manifesto pledge - to launch a fundamental review of business rates that will report in the autumn.

Get in touch for advice on managing costs.

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