Support for businesses affected by coronavirus
The Government has made support available to help businesses affected by the coronavirus. This will last for 12 months. Support is available in the form of Business Rates and grants.
As of 18 May, we have paid business grants to 2,283 businesses totalling more than £26.67million. We still have some to process and are working through them as fast as we can. Please check your bank account to see if the money has arrived.
How to register for grant support
Please fill in the online registration form. We will need all the information requested. This includes your bank account details as in most cases we will not hold current details for you. Please fill in the form carefully and accurately to avoid any delay.
If you own more than one business, or have multiple and separately rated premises, and believe you may be entitled to multiple grants please make sure you register for each business.
You can find more information about grant support below.
Small Business Grant
Small businesses with a rateable value of under £15,000 and in receipt of small business rate relief or rural rate relief are eligible for a grant of £10,000.
To qualify for the grant, businesses must have been liable for the business rates on their property on 11 March 2020 and be in receipt of small business rate relief.
Retail, Hospitality and Leisure Grant
Properties in the retail, hospitality and leisure sectors with a rateable value of up to £51,000 qualify for a cash grant of either £10,000 or £25,000. This is subject to state aid limits.
Qualifying criteria for grant support
To qualify for a grant, businesses must have been liable for the business rates on their property on 11 March 2020 and have an entitlement to Expanded Retail Discount. As Expanded Retail Discount doesn’t begin until 1 April 2020, eligibility will be decided based on whether a property would have qualified for the discount had the scheme been in place on 11 March 2020.
Businesses that qualify under the scheme with a rateable value of up to £15,000 will be eligible for a grant of £10,000 and businesses with a rateable value of between £15,001 and £50,999 will be eligible for a grant of £25,000.
There is one grant payable per property.
The following will not be eligible for grant support:
- Properties occupied for personal use, including but not limited to beach huts, private stables and loose boxes and moorings
- Car parks and parking spaces
- Businesses that were dissolved or in liquidation on 11 March 2020 will not be eligible for either grant.
If the Valuation Office Agency makes any changes to the Rating List for your property after the 11 March 2020 or a change is backdated to include 11 March 2020, you will not be eligible for the grant. However, if the Rating List is amended after receiving your grant, meaning you are no longer eligible for it, we will not recover the grant from you.
If we know that the Rating List is incorrect on 11 March 2020, we can withhold payment of the grant or we can choose to pay it to the person that would have received it if the list had been accurate.
To receive this funding, you must show on our records as the ratepayer of the property on 11 March 2020. If we believe our records might be incorrect, we can withhold payment of the grant until reasonable steps have been taken to confirm the identity of the correct ratepayer.
Any grant that is paid to an incorrect ratepayer will be recovered if it is found they were not the liable person for business rates on 11 March 2020. Landlords and Managing Agents are asked to help us make sure we have the correct ratepayers’ details.
Payment of the grant is subject to state aid limits. If you request a grant and you have already received elements of state aid in this or the last three financial years that could put you over the temporary €800,000 limit, you will need to complete a state aid declaration before we can pay any grant.
If we suspect you may be over that limit, or if any grant paid will take you over that limit, we may request you complete a state aid declaration.
The Government will not accept deliberate manipulation and fraud. Any business caught falsifying their records to gain additional grant money will face prosecution and any funding issued will be subject to claw back.
Discretionary grant funding
See our Covid-19 Business Information page for details.
Business Rates discounts
There are two main changes that will affect your Business Rates Bills in 2020/21.
Expanded Retail discount
A 100% Business Rates Retail Discount will be applied to all occupied retail, leisure and hospitality businesses for the year 2020/21. There will be no rateable value limit on the relief.
Pubs with a rateable value of between £51,000 and £100,000 will get a discount of £5,000.
Changes to accounts
Changes to accounts will be made after March 2020 once we have more information from the Government.
Business Rates bills for 2020/21 have already been sent out. If these changes apply to you then we will send you a new bill as soon as possible.
If these changes do not apply to you then your account is correct. You should make payment as shown on your bill.
Business Rates discount for nurseries
As an extraordinary response to the coronavirus, the Government announced a business rates Nursery Discount on 18 March 2020.
This relief will apply to hereditaments occupied by providers on Ofsted’s Early Years Register and are wholly or mainly used for the provision of the Early Years Foundation Stage and which are subject to business rates in the year 2020/21. There will be no rateable value limit on the relief.
Advice and support
Our Business page has more information about other types of support available.
Other types of Business Rates Relief
Your business property may qualify for relief on business rates, read the Wychavon Guidelines for Awarding Rate Relief for supplementary information. See the range of reductions available below.
Business Rates is not be payable for the first three months that a property is empty. After the 3-month period, rates will be charged at 100% unless the property is exempt e.g. listed buildings, empty properties owned by charities and community amateur sports clubs. Some properties are eligible for extended empty property relief, find out more on the Exempted buildings and empty buildings relief.
Partially empty property
If only part of the premises is being used it may be possible to reduce the amount of business rates that are paid.
The relief would stop if:
- the unoccupied part becomes occupied
- the property becomes completely unoccupied
If you wish to claim or inquire about this relief you should Contact us immediately, and we will arrange for one of our Visiting Officers to visit your premises.
Small Business Rate Relief
- To qualify your property's rateable value must be less than £15,00
- Your business only uses one property - you may still be able to get relief if you use more
If you wish to apply, complete the Application for Small Business Rate Relief
Rural Rate Relief
Businesses in a Rural Settlement could qualify for Mandatory or Discretionary Rural Rate Relief on their Non Domestic Rates bill.
Mandatory Rural Rate Relief
To qualify for 100% Mandatory Rural Rate Relief, your business premises must:
- be within the boundaries of a qualifying rural settlement.
- have a rateable value of not more than £8,500 in the case of a Post Office, general store or food shop.
- have a rateable value of not more than £12,500 in the case of a public house or petrol filling station.
- be used in whole or in part, as a general store, Post Office or both, or as a public house, food shop or petrol filling station.
- be either the only general store, the only Post Office, the only public house or the only petrol filling station in the rural settlement.
Complete the Mandatory Rural Rate Relief application form by downloading the Mandatory Rural Rate Relief application form.
Discretionary Rural Rate Relief
We may grant up to 50% relief to any general store, food shop, Post Office, public house or petrol filling station which does not qualify for the Mandatory Rural Rate Relief.
- A business can apply for Discretionary Rural Rate Relief of 50% provided that it:
- is within the boundaries of a qualifying rural settlement.
- has a rateable value of less than £16,500.
- is used for purposes which are of benefit to the local community, and
- is reasonable for us to make such a decision having regard to the interests of persons liable to pay Council Tax set by it.
Complete the Discretionary Rural Rate Relief application form by downloading the Discretionary Rural Rate Relief application form.
Charitable and Discretionary Relief
Registered charities, charitable organisations and Community Amateur Sports Clubs (CASC's) are entitled to relief from rates on any non-domestic property that is wholly or mainly used for charitable purposes.
- Relief is given at 80 per cent of the bill. We have the discretion to give a further 20% relief on the remaining bill depending upon what the premises are used for.
- We also have the discretion to give up to 50% discretionary relief on all or part of any rate bill for property occupied by certain non-profit making organisations for example; sports clubs, societies, village halls and youth associations.
Complete the Mandatory and Discretionary Rate Relief application form by downloading the Mandatory and Discretionary Relief application form.
You can get further information on Rate Relief by visiting the Business Rates page on the GOV.UK website.
A breakdown of the £300 million funding available to support businesses in Wychavon that are most affected by the recent revaluation.
Wychavon District Council’s Allocation
This scheme has been automatically applied to eligible accounts therefore businesses do not need to apply.
To maximise the funding available the following criteria has been used:
- The business has had an increase in Rateable Value as a result of the recent revaluation 2017/18
- The relief in 2017/18 will be fixed at 75% of business rates growth between 2016/17 and 2017/18
- The business has a Rateable Value under £200,000
- The business is not part of a national chain
- The business is not a public sector organisation or a housing association
- The hereditaments must be occupied
- The minimum relief awarded will be £100.00
Businesses may be entitled to a reduction from rates if they are suffering hardship and they can show that the local community would suffer a loss if the business was to close.
As each case needs to be determined on its merits you should Contact us for further information.
Supporting Small Businesses Relief
To support ratepayers facing large increases, as a result of the loss of rural rate and small business rate relief due to the revaluation. The ‘Supporting Small Businesses’ relief will ensure that the increase per year is limited to the greater of:
- a percentage increase of 5%, 7.5%, 10%, 15% and 15% in 2017/18 to 2021/22 all plus inflation. Unlike the transitional relief scheme, for the first year of the scheme the percentage increase is taken against the bill for 31 March 2017 after small business rate relief or rural rate relief; and
- a cash value of £600 per year (£50 per month). This cash minimum increase ensures that those ratepayers paying nothing or very small amounts in 2016/17 after small business rate relief are brought into paying something
Ratepayers remain in the Supporting Small Businesses relief scheme for either 5 years or until they reach the bill they would have paid without the scheme.
Office space occupied by local newspapers can get a discount of up to £1,500 per year until 31 March 2025.
Newspaper relief can be claimed up to a maximum of one discount per local newspaper title and per property and up to state aid limits.