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Retail relief | Sandwell Council

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Retail relief

For 2021/22 the Government expanded the 100% relief scheme for eligible properties but only for the period 1 April 2021 to 30 June 2021

From 1 July 2021 to 31 March 2022, an extended Retail Relief of 66% applied to eligible properties, with a 'Cash Cap' of £2m for businesses that were required to close (due to the government’s response to coronavirus) as at 5 January 2021, and £105,000 for businesses which were open on that date.

For 2022/23 the Government has announced a new relief scheme providing eligible, occupied, retail, hospitality and leisure properties with a 50% relief, up to a cash limit of £110,000 per business.

Ratepayers occupying more than one property will be entitled to Retail Relief for each of their eligible properties, subject to the Cash Cap from 1 July 2021 onwards

This relief can be refused. If you do not wish to claim this relief please contact business_rates@sandwell.gov.uk

The Government has provided the following guidance to councils:


Which properties will benefit from relief? 

Eligible businesses will include those which are wholly or mainly* used:

  • as shops, restaurants, cafes, drinking establishments, cinemas and live music venues
  • for assembly and leisure
  • as hotels, guest and boarding premises and self-catering accommodation.

* Wholly or mainly means that 100% (wholly) or 50% (mainly) of trade is conducted with visiting members of the public at the premises.

The Council will consider each award based on individual merits and reserves the right to decline or withdraw an award.

Your property will not get a discount if it's being used for the following: 

  • financial services, such as banks, building societies, bureau de change, payday lenders, betting shops, pawn brokers, cash points
  • professional services such as estate agents, letting agents, employment agencies, solicitors, accountants, insurance agents/ financial advisers, tutors
  • medical services such as dentists, doctors, osteopaths, chiropractors and vets
  • post office sorting offices.

Your property will not be eligible for expanded retail relief if it is not reasonably accessible to visiting members of the public. For the purpose of this scheme, this would include properties which do not have a customer facing ‘front of house’. In the normal course of events, members of the public would be able to attend a retail premises in person. The business in question must sell wholly or mainly (at least 50% of trade) to visiting members of the public to qualify for relief. Examples where relief would not be granted would include skip hire, industrial units, scaffolding services etc where attendance in person does not normally occur or if it does, the trade from visiting members of the public does not constitute at least 50% of that businesses' sales.

State Aid replaced by Subsidy Control Regulations

State guidance was withdrawn on 1 January 2021. The Brexit transition period has ended and new rules on Subsidy Control now apply. For current information and to see how this may affect your business please go to https://www.gov.uk/guidance/state-aid . If you believe your business will exceed the new subsidy control limits you must contact the Business Rates team via email at business_rates@sandwell.gov.uk to ask for any relief already awarded to be removed from your account.


Application of Retail Relief

Sandwell Business Rates team identified those businesses eligible for the 2021/22 100% expanded retail relief and automatically awarded this on eligible accounts. Please note that the 100% relief only applies for the period 1 April 2021 to 30 June 2021.

From 1 July 2021, the relief dropped to 66%. However, the Government have introduced 'Cash Caps' alongside the reduced relief which limits the reductions that can be awarded to businesses with more than one property in England. In order to for us to check your eligibility to the 66% relief based on these Cash Caps, you will need to make an application for the 66% relief to be applied to your account from 1 July 2021. Part of the application will be a declaration that you do not exceed the cash caps.

Applications for the expanded retail relief can be made up to the 30 September 2022.

From the 1 April 2022 the 50% Retail, Hospitality and Leisure Relief Scheme has been automatically applied to those businesses who qualified for the expanded retail relief.

Any business that have not received any of the above reliefs and feel they meet the eligibility criteria and cash cap rules will need to make an application for relief

Apply for retail relief