Promoting and enhancing best practice and technical expertise

Rating Law and Practice 2022: Session 1

Applying Case Law to Practice

Best rating practice cannot be achieved without understanding case law. This event is far more than a case law review. Leading lawyers and rating advisors, along with senior VOA contributors will review key cases in the context of current practice. Guided by the Chair, Upper Tribunal Judge Elizabeth Cooke, they review important and topical cases and explore the nuances of what is best and effective practice in the light of these decisions.

Module Duration: 1 hour 57 minutes

Recorded: 02/03/22

Areas covered

Welcome & Introduction from the Event Chair - Judge Elizabeth Cooke


The courts have dealt with a line of cases in respect of rates mitigation schemes over recent years. The latest decisions include an important judgment from the Supreme Court on the question of purposive interpretation, and examples of both effective and ineffective mitigation schemes.. 

Lead: Roger Cohen PanelVictoria Boateng and George Mackenzie

Hurstwood Properties Ltd & others (Respondents) v Rossendale Borough Council & another (Appellants) [2021] UKSC 16

  • Rates mitigation SPV schemes 
  • Purposive interpretation of statutory provisions

Isle Investments Ltd v Leeds CC [2021] EWHC 345

  • Sham leases

The Queen (oao SoS Health and Public Health England) v Harlow DC [2021] EWHC 909 (Admin)

  • Intermittent occupation to mitigate empty rate liabilities

Queen Street Properties Ltd and Another v Cardiff City Council [2022] EWHC 39 (Admin)

  • Identity of rateable occupier 
  • Sham leases

Rating (Corona Virus) and Directors Disqualification (Dissolved Companies) Bill

What is the significance of the Act, and can there be any room for MCC appeals now? How can businesses access the fund that has been put in place in lieu of MCC appeals?   

Lead: Hui Ling McCarthy QC PanelHelen Zammit-WillsonMichael PearcePhil Black and Josh Myerson

  • Relevant and non relevant determinations
  • Specific exclusions in respect of mode or category of occupation
  • Accessing the £1.5b relief fund
  • Treatment of existing checks and challenges