Promoting and enhancing best practice and technical expertise

Navigating and Resolving Rating Disputes in the Valuation and Upper Tribunals

This is a comprehensive review of the procedures, skills and expectations for those that take rating disputes to the Valuation or Upper Tribunal (Lands Chamber). Understanding the tribunal procedures, adhering to the duties and expectations of an expert, and the impact of Gardiner Theobald LLP v. Jackson (VO) 2018 are key reasons to attend.  

Start Date Venue Price  
16 October 2019 Mills & Reeve, London    

Note: All prices are to be paid in GBP and are subject to VAT at the prevailing rate

Event duration: Day Event (5 hours CPD) (Lunch Included).
Registration from: 09.30. Event starts at: 09.55. Event finishes at: 16.15.

CPT Events would like to thank Mills & Reeve for the use of their facilities.

Please note: Mills & Reeve are relocating in early October to: 24 King William Street, London, EC4R 9AT 

Download and print your full course brochure here

Rating surveyors are at home advising clients and managing appeals. But when they step into the Tribunal they are in an unfamiliar and potentially hostile environment; the home of lawyers and judges, where the rules ofengagement and expectations are very different.  At the very least, the unfamiliarity can put experts at a disadvantage, at worst, terror. 

And Gardiner Theobald LLP v. Jackson (VO) 2018 decision has created a new dynamic which requires those bringing cases to look at their systems prior to the hearing.

Tribunals simply follow the evidence and if your evidence and actions are not clear and unambiguous, or if you do not adhere to the expectations of presenting evidence, or fail to follow procedures, then your case and your client can suffer. And potentially so will you! 

This programme reviews the skills, procedures and tactics for taking 2010 rating Appeals to the Valuation and Upper Tribunal.  There remains a high volume of outstanding appeals from the 2010 List, with about 90,000 still unsettled. As many of these are the more contentious cases and significant number could end up being heard before the Valuation Tribunal and some may be expected to reach the Upper Tribunal. 

The 2017 Rating list has 1.9 million properties, and only 7% have been claimed by advisors, so whilst the numbers in the CCA process are very small, once the inertia of the system has been addressed, there are likely to be significant volumes coming in the next 12 months. 

This is a must attend event if you are destined to give or take evidence to either Tribunal.  



Welcome & Introduction by Conference Chairman - Upper Tribunal Judge Cooke

Whether to Appeal to the VTE

Appealing in the 2010 list:

  • VTE Standard Directions and Gardiner & Theobald v Jackson [VO] (2018)

Appealing in the 2017 list:

  • Right of appeal to the VTE
  • What evidence is allowed?
  • Significance of the decision notice
  • Making an appeal

Are there other routes available dependent on the nature of the dispute? 

Whether to appeal to UT

The Decisions and Fall Out from the VT - The Transition to UT:

  • Time limits to lodge an appeal to the UT
  • Reviewing the statements of case and evaluation the decision from VT
  • Can you alter your statement of case?
  • Estimating costs 
  • Assessing the chances of success
  • Changes to costs in the UT regime 
  • How to settle at any stage

Particular Problems:

  • Inheriting a case, or being parachuted into a disputed case
  • Bringing forward a class action or lead case
  • Direct access - pros and cons
  • Using costs as a way to reach settlement: Calderbanks and sealed offers

Procedures to get to a hearing

VT Procedures:

  • Statements of case
  • Witness statements
  • Applying for postponements
  • Avoiding strikeouts
  • Admission of evidences

CCA Procedures:

  • Appeal requirements
  • Admissibility of evidence

UT Procedures:

  • Standard and simplified procedures
  • Complex case procedures
  • Statement of case
  • Your change in role
  • Preparation and service of statements and reports
  • Disclosure
  • Statement of agreed facts and issues
  • Bundles and skeletons
  • Sanctions for failure to comply

Preparing Your Statement of Case

  • Preparing your case, your documents
  • What your statement of case must contain
  • Hammerson UK Properties v Gowlett [VO] (2017)
  • Contentions
  • Facts on which you wish to rely 
  • Variations in the statement of case between the VT and UT

Expert Duties

  • The sources of expectation and best practice: Tribunal procedures and RICS Expert Witness Practice Statements, Case Law
  • Liabilities of expert witnesses and professional indemnity issues
  • Changes to the rules of privilege
  • Changes to practice directions
  • Where an expert acts in a dual capacity as advocate and expert: Can you still do both? The impact of Gardiner Theobald LLP v. Jackson [VO] (2018)
  • The obligation to disclose all relevant information - a duty of candour: how much information?

Effective Team Work

  • When and how to instruct your solicitor and advocate
  • How to choose
  • How the advocate, solicitor and surveyor need to work together

At the Hearing: Giving Evidence

The natural ground and home for litigation lawyers and judge; but an alien environment for experts and most witnesses

The Process:

  • Who's who: what do they do?
  • Timeline and order

The Tribunal Perspective:

  • What is the tribunal seeking? 
  • How the tribunal weights evidence
  • Credibility and building trust 

Presenting your Case:

Behaviours from Advocates - know your sparring partner and their behaviours

  • How do advocates examine?
  • Know your own advocate and your opponent's
  • The logic of the advocate
  • Styles of cross-examination 
  • Cross examination strategies and tactics
  • Practical examples

Behaviours from Witnesses:

  • Presenting yourself to the tribunal 
  • How to present yourself
  • Oral evidence - do's and don'ts 
  • Duties in cross examination imposed on the advocate
  • What they should, can and can't do?
  • Styles of giving evidence; style of being cross examined
  • Practical examples
  • Reliance of notes and reports
  • Useful tips
  • Dealing with interventions and questions from the Tribunal members


  • Decision language 
  • Snatching defeat from the jaws of victory - the nightmare of costs; you may win the case, but lose on costs