The Valuation Office Agency is writing to all licensees asking for information about their pub businesses, which will form the basis for setting their rates from 2017.
Any forms that are not completed and returned within 56 days will incur a £100 fine.
“Business rates are a heavy burden for licensees and need reform if they are to support the Great British pub,” Chris Jowsey, Star Pubs & Bars trading director said.
“Our approach is to give our lessees the best support we can so they don’t pay a penny more than they should. Using ratings experts, providing detailed, accurate and relevant information, bi-annually reviewing rates and taking early action about concerns are key and we will continue to take this vigilant approach on our lessees’ behalf.”
Research conducted by Star Pubs & Bars concerning 500 of its appeals relating to 2010 valuations revealed that it took an average of two years and two months to settle appeals, with some lessees waiting four years for a settlement.
It also showed that 40% of its appeals were successful, generating average annual savings of £2,500, while one sixth of lessees had their bills cut by more than £10,000 a year.
“Given the length of time the appeals took and the amount of money lessees had tied up with local councils in that period, we are taking a proactive approach and employing Humberts early on in the process rather than waiting until the new Ratings List comes out in 2017,” Jowsey added.