You must first write to the council (billing authority) explaining what the problem is. The council should reply within 2 months. If you are unhappy with their reply, or you do not hear from them within 4 months of writing, you can appeal to the independent Valuation Tribunal.
You can appeal to the independent Valuation Tribunal within 2 months of receiving their reply if you are still unhappy.
You must send us an appeal form within 2 months of receiving the council’s reply. You must appeal in writing and it is helpful if you enclose a copy of the council’s reply. You can complete and submit a form online here or download a form to complete offline by this link. Or we can send you a form if you contact us.
If the council has not replied within 4 months of your letter to them you can still appeal to us.
You can find more information by looking at our
You can also see decisions from 2011 by searching our Decisions and Lists pages, here.
The Government website may also help you www.gov.uk
Please try to provide as much evidence as possible to support your case. You will be allowed to:
• give oral and written evidence;
• present anything that you believe will help your case, such as photographs or plans; and
• call witnesses.
It is best for everyone if there are no surprises at the hearing, otherwise your case may need to be adjourned to a later date. For this reason, with all notices of hearing we send out after 1 April 2017 there will be new standard directions. It is important that you read these and the guidance as they explain the exchange of evidence between you and the council.
You may want to continue talking to the council about the notice to see if you can reach a settlement with them. If you do reach an agreement, please let us know.
At least six weeks before the hearing, the council should send you a copy of their case including their arguments and evidence.
At least four weeks before the hearing you should send to the council all the evidence you want the Tribunal to consider, including anything you want to say about the council’s evidence.
At least two weeks before the hearing the council will send their case and yours to the Tribunal and will send you a copy.
You could attend another hearing before yours to see what happens. Please contact us if you wish to do this.
Nearer the day, if we can, we will give you an idea of the time when your appeal might be heard.
You may decide not to carry on with your appeal at any time. If you do decide to withdraw your appeal, please let us know. You can use this form or email us.
You may –
• request a postponement if you have a good reason for not being able to attend on the day; or
• appoint a representative to present your case for you.
It is always better if you can come to the hearing so that you can answer any questions that the panel might have and so you can ask the other party questions. However, there are other options –
• Appeal heard in absence procedure. This is when the appellant is not present at a hearing, but has submitted a written case to the VOA listing officer in line with the standard directions. This will be considered at a hearing where the other party will be present. But you must let the Tribunal know at least 24 hours before the hearing day.
• The decision without hearing procedure. In these cases, the parties have agreed that neither of them will be present at a hearing, and the Valuation Tribunal has agreed that this procedure can be used. The Tribunal will direct the parties to submit a written statement of case to the Tribunal and all other parties by a specified date. For more information, please read the Practice Statement, Decisions without a hearing.
The hearing is as informal as possible and we will try to put everyone at ease, but these are judicial proceedings and a degree of formality is inevitable.
The panel will normally follow the Model Procedure set out in the Practice Statement.
The panel will decide who will put their case first, but if you would prefer to give your case first or second, please let us know.
During the hearing:
• the panel will ask you and the council to present your cases;
• you will be able to ask the council questions;
• the council will be able to ask you questions; and
• the panel and the clerk can ask you and the council questions.
Before the panel retires to make its decision, it will ask you if you would like to summarise your case (in other words, go over the main points of your case again).
The panel will make its decision based on the evidence and argument presented to it, bearing in mind what the law (legislation and case law) allows. The panel will retire at the end of the hearing to deliberate and will call the clerk in to provide legal advice and to help draft the reasons for the decision. However, the clerk takes no part in the making of the decision.
The Tribunal’s decision is not announced at the hearing. We send you a decision notice, usually within one month of the hearing.
When we receive your appeal we send you a Notice of Acknowledgement and a guidance booklet
We set the date for your hearing and send you a Notice of Hearing with directions.
We may send you a Hearing Reminder Notice or we will contact you by phone/email
We send you a Notice of Decision and a guidance booklet