FOI Request - Unclaimed Business Rate Credit Balances
This is a request for information, filed under the Freedom of information act 2000. We wish to obtain the information, from the Council, relating to unclaimed business rate credit balances.
We are aware that all Billing Authorities hold on account sums of money that are due to be returned to ratepayers and for a variety of reasons have not been repaid and maybe considered untraceable by the Council.
We therefore request a breakdown of credit balances accrued since your earliest records, for the amounts owing to all incorporated companies within the authorities billing area, including
• The name of each business in respect of which non-domestic rate credit balances remain payable
• The value of overpayment in each case which remains unclaimed
• The years(s) in which overpayment was made and
• The hereditament address
I can confirm that Non-Domestic Rate accounts which are in credit as the result of an adjustment or an overpayment are routinely dealt with as part of the daily duties of the Council's Revenues staff. Newly-created credits are quickly refunded by users and this ensures that overpayments do not remain on accounts.
An exception to this may occur when staff are dealing with a dispute on an account or are awaiting information to direct the refund cheque to the appropriate payee. This may delay the issue of a refund-cheque. Some cheques are not cashed within the six-month period following their issue and any such cheque will be cancelled resulting in the rates account again becoming overpaid.
I can, therefore, confirm there are no long-term overpaid balances on Non-Domestic Rates accounts other than those which cannot be refunded due to one of the factors that I have identified.