Small businesses in Worcester are being urged not to pay third parties for advice on getting discounts on their business rates.
Worcester City Council has spoken out following reports of agencies offering to help local companies in getting Small Business Rate Relief - but only if a fee is paid.
In fact, the council provides information on the discount scheme for free on its website and in letters sent with companies’ bills.
“There’s absolutely no need to pay a middle man to get Small Business Rate Relief on your bills,” said Nick Jefferies, Partnership Director at the South Worcestershire Revenues Partnership, which administers business rates for Worcester City Council.
“Small Business Rate Relief can have a big impact on firms’ business rates bills, but most small companies will have already been sent information about this discount scheme. Any who do not know about it should go straight to www.worcester.gov.uk, not pay a fee to an agency or third party.”
Small Business Rate Relief is available to firms which operate from premises with a rateable value of less than £12,000.
If a property’s rateable value is below £6,000 the firm could qualify for 100% relief on its business rates. A rateable value of between £6,000 and £12,000 may bring a partial discount on business rates.
More information about Small Business Rate Relief in Worcester can be found by going to www.worcester.gov.uk and searching for “business rate reductions”.
Local companies with queries about the rateable value of their premises should contact the Valuation Office Agency on 03000 501 501.
No fees are charged for inquiries made to either of these services.
Information on Small Business Rate Relief can also found at www.greatbusiness.gov.uk and www.gov.uk/apply-for-business-rate-relief.