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With effect from 1 April 2024, legislation has changed from six weeks to 13 weeks in which a property must be occupied before an exemption period can be claimed.

Certificate of Occupation/Vacation

If there are repeated periods of short term occupation at a property, we will require notice of occupation and notice of vacation.

If the 13 week occupation rule is being used on a repeated basis; to comply with regulations it must be established that 'beneficial occupation is taking place'. It must also be established that after the 13 weeks plus occupation has ceased, that the property has returned to its empty status.

A visiting officer will be sent to confirm occupation and also to confirm vacation.

If the council is not informed within a reasonable timescale, it may be that the occupation period is charged for a longer time. Awarding an empty status to a property and hence the exemption, could also be delayed.

To notify us of periods of occupation or vacation, please use our Certificate of Occupation and Certificate of Vacation.

Business Rates Section

Council Offices
SG13 8EQ

01438 242876