Tuesday, 2 July 2013

Questions (499)

Dessie Ellis

Question:

499. Deputy Dessie Ellis asked the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government if new businesses are liable for unpaid commercial rates from previous tenants. [31524/13]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Environment)

Local authorities are under a statutory obligation to levy rates on any property used for commercial purposes, in accordance with the details entered in the valuation lists prepared by the independent Commissioner of Valuation under the Valuation Act 2001. The levying and collection of rates are matters for each individual local authority.

Under the legislation, the person liable for payment of rates is the person in occupation of a rateable property on the date of the making of the rate by the relevant local authority. The owner, rather than the occupier, may be liable for commercial rates if the property in question is unoccupied on the date of the making of the rate. Should a person’s occupancy commence after the date of the making of the rate, then that person is not primarily liable for rates for that year. However, as a subsequent occupier, that person can be held liable for up to two years’ arrears of rates if they cannot be recovered from the person with whom the primary liability lies.