1: Corresponding with a council or bailiff firm. Ensure that you send all your correspondences by email. This way you can keep a track record of everything you and they have stated. Never send your correspondence by postal service, as they will often claim they never received them from you. If telephoning, record your call so you can complain if you were treated and spoken to unfairly.
2: Check your paperwork. Make sure you check your business rate bills correctly, noting the dates and added costs such as court costs and bailiffs fees, if applicable. Check that any fees are accurate, and complain to the council if they are not. If a bailiff has charged you excessive fees, complain directly to the council by email noting the charges, and challenge them accordingly.
3: Request an affordable payment plan. Ask the council by email for a payment arrangement if you are in arrears and not able to pay in full. Follow the same process if money is owed to a bailiff firm. Record your call if telephoning in case you need to complain.
4: Ask the council for any rates relief past or present, and apply for hardship relief if you find it too difficult to pay the debt. Contact the Valuation Office Agency if you think the premises rateable value is too high. You may be able to get the amount you pay reduced.
5: Formal Complaint. If all else fails, and you’re not happy with the outcome or predicament you are in, make an official complaint. Sometimes this can be really effective at dealing with a council or bailiff agency, but if in doubt, get some professional help.
Business Rate Advisors Ltd helps hundreds of business owners every month with their business rate debt and dispute issues. Don’t get stressed about it, get professional help, get in touch with us today on 01225 667 747.