EXPLAINER: Covid-19 waiver of commercial rates

Leitrim Observer Reporter


Leitrim Observer Reporter

small business

A 100% waiver of commercial rates applies for a 6 month period from March 27, 2020 to September 27, 2020 to all ratepayers except a small number of categories. The waiver will be applied as a credit in lieu of rates for the 6 month period covered in 2020. These excluded categories are mainly utilities, banks, large supermarkets and corporates (as below).

How do I apply?

An application to Leitrim County Council for a waiver of commercial rates for 2020 is not required. Leitrim County Council will automatically apply a 100% credit in lieu of commercial rates, for a six-month period, to classes and categories of occupied rateable properties where the occupying business is not in an excluded category identified below.

Circumstances where you have already paid your commercial rates for 2020.

In the event that you qualify for a 6 month credit in lieu of rates and have already paid your rates bill for 2020, a refund or credit will be arranged by Leitrim County Council. You should contact the Rates Department by email at rates@leitrimcoco.ie or by phone at 071/9620005  to make arrangements for a refund application to be processed or alternatively, you may choose to retain a credit balance on your account.

What will happen after September 27, 2020?

The potential for the waiver to extend beyond end September will be kept under review and any future extensions can be considered when there is greater certainty regarding the continuing impact of the pandemic on businesses and the reopening of society.

Excluded categories

In recognition that there are a small number of ratepayers for whom their businesses have not been affected by the pandemic, these ratepayers will not be eligible for the automatic waiver. However, a fund is being provided for ratepayers in these categories who can demonstrate that the pandemic has had a significant negative impact on their business. These ratepayers should engage with Leitrim County Council in relation to their commercial rates.  

This credit does not apply to the following Excluded Categories:

·        Public Service

·        Global Utility Networks on the Central Valuation List  

·        Vacant Properties

·        Individual Office Premises with an annual rates bill of €100,000 or greater in 2020*  

·        Individual Industrial Premises with an annual rates bill of €100,000 or greater in 2020*

·        Supermarkets greater than 500m2 (Categories Supermarket 2 and Supermarket 3)

·        Data Centres  

·        Incinerator, Generating Stations

·        Landfill Sites

·        Network (Cable)

·        Network (Storm Water)

·        Network (Water)

·        Windfarms

·        Generating Stations

·        Banks  

·        Building Societies

·        Pharmaceutical Manufacturing

·        Computer/Technology/Electronic manufacturing 

·        Premises contracted to provide services related to the Covid-19 pandemic to/on behalf of the State, where the State is already compensating for rates as part of the contract between the occupier or service provider and the State.

*Individual premises refers to all property valued under a single property number.  

Business in the excluded categories above may seek eligibility from Leitrim County Council if it can be shown the business was severely impacted by the pandemic. The Council may request documentary evidence to support eligibility.  In this circumstance, please apply to rates@leitrimcoco.ie no later than September 30, 2020.