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Changes to business rates appeals system fears ignored ahead of start date

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The Government pushed ahead with plans to overhaul the appeals system for business rates despite not receiving a single consultation response in support of them, The Sunday Telegraph can reveal.

Businesses were consulted about the new “check, challenge, appeal” process in August 2016, which has overhauled the grounds on which companies can argue against rating ­decisions by introducing a power to throw out appeals that are within a margin of error of around 15pc. The system was implemented in April this year along with a revaluation of rates across the country.

However, of 287 responses to the consultation, not a single company, trade organisation or individual wrote in support of the proposed system.

Responses were received from many of the UK’s leading companies across a range of industries – including Boots, Tesco, Unilever, British Steel, BT, ­Eurostar, Greene King and Whitbread – as well as trade bodies such as the British Chambers of Commerce, the CBI and the British Retail Consortium.

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