Laura Sharman 10 January 2018

Revaluation of rates leading to councils referring 41,000 businesses to bailiffs

Councils have referred an estimated 41,000 businesses to bailiffs over unpaid business rates, new research has revealed.

A freedom of information request by Altus Group found councils referred 28,355 businesses to bailiffs over unpaid debt between 1st April and 31st August 2017.

The ratings advisor estimates the number of businesses referred to debt collectors in the five months since the revaluation of rates could be around 41,000.

The research found the London Boroughs of Hounslow and Lewisham referred the most, with one in 11 of the overall premises in their areas referred to bailiffs for enforcement.

Alex Probyn, UK president of business rates at Altus Group, said: 'It isn’t only those whose values have increased that are struggling.

'The current, deeply unfair, system of transitional adjustment severely limits the amount by which bills can go down, meaning many businesses are paying disproportionately high bills in locations where local economies are underperforming and values are falling.'

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