Chancellor signals axe for staircase tax

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Chancellor Philip Hammond’s has given his first indication that he might be contemplating axing the staircase tax, stating he is “certainly looking at” legislative steps to end the staircase tax.

Senior Conservative, Labour and Lib Dem MPs have all voiced their opposition to the tax which refers to backdated business rates bills currently being delivered to any businesses that uses communal stairwells, walkways or lifts.
In the past, firms would receive one business rates bill covering all occupied space. Following the Woolway v Mazars Supreme Court ruling, the Valuation Office Agency (VOA) was contemplating allocating different bills for individual floors and workspaces. This would mean substantial bill increases for firms, resulting in many small business losing rates relief.

Mike Cherry, Federation of Small Businesses (FSB) National Chairman, said: “The staircase tax has heaped misery on thousands of small businesses that happen to occupy split workspaces. The Chancellor’s words will come as welcome relief to the desperate firms who had absolutely no idea that bill hikes were coming down the line.

“The Chancellor’s decision marks a victory for common sense – he’s done the right thing. We look forward to his words becoming action at the Budget if not before.”