The Scottish Government announced measures to assist businesses in Scotland due to the Covid-19 virus.

 A link to the measures is attached.

These measures are extremely welcome for the retail and hospitality sectors but we still need some clarification on a few points which we have asked the Scottish Government to clarify.

These include; is it necessary for a ratepayer to make an application for each property to the Council; what is the definition of a property being occupied and will the State Aid provisions kick in or will they be removed?

Many other sectors including offices, industrial, specialist sectors, such as the whisky and energy sectors are also suffering and they are not entitled to relief under the new regulations. Will the Scottish Government reconsider the regulations and introduce further regulations to assist these sectors?

There is also much debate on whether the events over the past few weeks constitute a Material Change of circumstances (MCC) and appeals will need to be lodged within the next 10 days. 

The answers to the above questions will depend on the number of appeals Montagu Evan's will lodge but we intend to be pragmatic and lodge appeals only where it is necessary.

Businesses and ratepayers need answers quickly on these points and any delay on implementing applications or processing appeals may have an impact on the operation of their business. However  we are fully aware of the workload being placed on Councils, Valuation Appeal Committees and Assessors and the Scottish Government needs to review the current regulations to assist them to swiftly process applications and appeals in a more efficient manner 

The information from both the Westminster and Scottish Governments is fluid and we anticipate further changes will take place in the forthcoming weeks but we will keep our clients updated on any new proposals as they arise.