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Expert Insights

Community Infrastructure Levy: Deferring a Payment

The Community Infrastructure Levy (Coronavirus) (Amendment) (England) Regulations 2020 make provision for charging authorities in England to defer CIL where certain circumstances are met. Draft Government guidance can be found here.

Who can submit a deferral request?

You may request that the relevant collecting authority defers a CIL payment falling due between 22 July 2020 and 31 July 2021 if:

  •  you or your business have an annual turnover not exceeding £45 million (government guidance provides further information on “turnover” for these purposes) and
  •  you are experiencing financial difficulties for reasons connected to the effects of the coronavirus.

How to apply

A deferral request must be submitted to the collecting authority in writing no more than 14 days before, on, or as soon as practicable after the day that payment is due. The collecting authority may request information which must be provided within 14 days of the request to avoid a refusal. According to government guidance, as a minimum, you should supply a copy of the demand notice, evidence of your turnover which may include a declaration from a chartered accountant or auditor, and an explanation of your financial difficulties.

The collecting authority has discretion as to whether to grant a deferral request – it must consider whether it is “appropriate in the circumstances”, although the guidance states that authorities are expected to take a positive approach. The authority must determine the application as soon as practicable and in any event within 40 days of receipt. If granted, it must reissue the demand notice

A deferral can be granted for a maximum of six months from the date of request. If a deferred payment becomes due on or before 31 July 2021, you can apply for a further deferral for the same development.

What about interest and surcharges?

The Regulations temporarily disapply interest and surcharges for late payment while the collecting authority is considering a deferral request. In the event of a refusal, interest does not accrue and a surcharge for late payment may not be applied for 7 days from the date of the refusal.

Where CIL is the subject of a deferral request and late payment interest has accrued on a day within the period beginning 21 March 2020 and ending on the day before the collecting authority receives that deferral request, you may request a credit of the interest accrued against the CIL amount due (an interest request). A collecting authority may grant the request if it considers it appropriate in the circumstances.

Do the amendments cover Mayoral CIL?

It depends. A deferral or interest request may be made in respect of CIL charged by the Mayor, but the collecting authority may only grant the request if the Mayor is of the view that it is appropriate. At the time of writing, the Mayor had not provided any indication as to his views.

For more information, please contact Lydia O'Hagan or your usual Charles Russell Speechlys contact.

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