The estimated cost for empty property business rates for vacant properties recorded on the e-PIMS database owned by HM Courts Service (HMCS) in each of the last five years was:
Financial year Empty rates charge (£) 2004-051 23,860 2005-06 55,420 2006-07 55,030 2007-08 278,150 1 Information for Crown and County Court.
Empty rates charge (£)
1 Information for Crown and County Court.
Following the formation of HMCS on 1 April 2005, responsibility for rates payments for magistrates courts transferred from individual magistrates courts committees to HMCS. The charges recorded for the financial year 2005-06 therefore comprises vacant magistrates court properties, as well as vacant Crown and County court properties, awaiting either sale or sub-letting.
The significant increase in costs from 2007-08 is predominantly due to the vacation of the former Bristol magistrates court building, following the completion of a new PFI magistrates court in Bristol. This one property incurs empty rates charges of c. £233,000 per annum. The vacant property is currently being marketed for sale.