Chambers has a leading reputation for its work in rating acting for ratepayers, the VOA, local authorities, and government departments. Members appear regularly in the Upper Tribunal and in the Court of Appeal and Supreme Court.
The General Editor and two editors of the leading textbook, Ryde on Rating & the Council Tax, are Members of FTB.
Both Chambers and Partners and the Legal 500 rank Francis Taylor Building as a leading set for rating and valuation. The most recent edition of Chambers and Partners notes that "Francis Taylor Building has strength in depth and they are market leaders.”
Rating valuation, that is, the assessment of rateable values and the identification of hereditaments are determined by the Valuation Tribunal (for England or Wales, as the case may be) and the Upper Tribunal (Lands Chamber). Members of FTB have advised and appeared in most of the major rating valuation and exemption cases in recent years (both in England and Wales and abroad). These include Monsanto plc. v. Farris (which remains the leading case on the contractor's basis method of valuation), BT plc v. Sanderson, HACTL v. Commissioner of Rating & Valuation, Hong Kong Electric Co. Ltd. v. Commissioner of Rating & Valuation, Harrods Ltd. v. Baker, Gallagher v. Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, British Car Auctions Ltd. v. Hazell, Hardman v. British Gas Trading Ltd., Belfast International Airport Ltd. v. Commissioner of Valuation, SEM Logistics Milford Haven Ltd. v. Webb, Telereal Trillium v. Hewitt and Church of Scientology v. Ricketts.
Ratepayer clients include major retailers and operators of retail centres, telecommunications operators, infrastructure providers (water, electricity, gas, rail), industrialists, office developers and occupiers, Government departments and local authorities.
The collection of rates due on occupied and unoccupied property is carried out by ‘billing authorities’ who are mainly district and borough councils. Members of FTB advise and appear in the Magistrates Courts and the High Court in relation to rate collection issues for billing authorities and ratepayers.
Cases include Merton LBC v Nuffield Health, Makro Properties Ltd. v. Nuneaton & Bedworth BC, Principled Offsite Logistics Ltd. v. Trafford Council.
Members of Chambers are frequently instructed in council tax matters, both before the Valuation Tribunal for England, in Magistrates’ Courts and on appeal in the High Court and above. Members of Chambers also advise local authorities on policy issues related to the council tax.
Cases include L.B Harrow v. Ayiku.
‘Some of the brightest and best barristers in this field." "A fantastic set to work with."Legal 500, 2024
"Has strength in depth and they are market leaders.”Chambers and Partners, 2023
"They have a strong niche in rating law."Legal 500, 2023
"The quality of barristers is incredibly high."Legal 500, 2023
"The team is highly regarded for its expertise in rating matters, and handles instructions relating to local government finances, council tax, licensing and compulsory purchase orders and compensation."Legal 500, 2022
"The set as a whole has extremely knowledgeable and hard working barristers with a wealth of experience and offers a good range of barristers within different price ranges."Legal 500, 2022
"Francis Taylor Building is a leading set for rating and valuation work, offering a strong bench of barristers who are experts in this area."Chambers and Partners, 2022
"Barristers at the set demonstrate expertise in a wide range of rating and valuation disputes, including council tax matters and business rates cases".Chambers and Partners, 2022
"Individuals regularly act for local authorities and ratepayers and have appeared before the Upper Tribunal, Court of Appeal and Supreme Court".Chambers and Partners, 2022