Ward Hadaway is supporting Small Business Saturday by providing some top tips to help SMEs stay on the right track with so much uncertainty expected in the future.
Business rates, surface water and highways drainage charges are the largest single fixed costs borne by businesses.
These expenses have to be met when a business occupies premises, regardless of whether it is trading or not. Particularly in the current economic climate, all businesses are well advised actively to manage these costs.
In particular, the business rates liability of your business should be considered regularly in conjunction with your professional advisers.
Our business rates team is one of the very few teams in the country specialising in this area of law.
The team provided strategic and legal advice to the successful campaign for the abolition of liability to pay backdated business rates between 2008 and 2012.
The coalition government ended up abolishing £120m of backdated liability to pay business rates in 2012, but sadly not before some businesses were liquidated as a result of the initial imposition.
The case vividly illustrates the problems that can occur when businesses do not actively manage their business rates liability.
We can advise you on all aspects of your liability to pay business rates separately and in conjunction with your rating survey.
A simple examination of whether you meet the criteria to pay business rates can provide significant cost savings.
The inadequate resources at the disposal of the officials charged with determining your liability often leads to situations where liability is incorrectly imposed or the amount of liability is overstated.
Surface water and highways drainage charges are also a considerable fixed cost of operating a business from premises. Often these charges are merely paid without an understanding of whether they are correct or whether they can be actively managed to reduce a businesses liability.
Our business rates team is currently advising an undertaking with a very large operational property portfolio on its liability to pay surface water and highways drainage charges to a utility, which has resulted in significant savings for our client.
We can advise you on your liability to pay business rates, surface water and highways drainage charges and how your liability can be minimised.
For more information from true experts in the field, please get in touch.