From April 2017, approximately 500,000 small firms will be hit by rises of up to 300 per cent in a single year, as a result of the government's plans to overhaul the business rates system, a move which small businesses are calling “shambolic”.
The changes follow a review of the way officials calculate business rates which are charged on most non-domestic properties including shops, offices, pubs, warehouses, factories, and holiday rental homes and guest houses.
Whilst the government is pressing ahead with the changes, it has admitted that its online calculator, which tells small businesses how much they will need to pay, is not always accurate.
Speaking to the Daily Mail, Jerry Schurder of business rates specialist Gerald Eve, says: "The system is horrendously complicated and massively unfair.
"The Government keeps saying no one will pay more than 5 per cent but lots of them will see much bigger rises because they are no longer eligible for small business rates relief."
Chas Roy Chowdhury, head of taxation at the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants, adds: "It all feels quite shambolic at the moment.
"The Government needs to do more to explain to small businesses about how these increases are being calculated or stop the clock and rethink this policy."
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