Supreme Court decision on business rates for cash machines
By Sarah Wood | 20th May 2020
The Supreme Court has given its ruling on whether ATM facilities, both inside and outside of stores, should be separately assessed for business rates.
The long-running dispute over the rating of ATM machines concluded with the court's decision that cash machines shouldn't be separately assessed for business rates.
The decision upholds the Court of Appeal's previous decision and is a resounding win for Cardtronics - the suppliers of ATM machines - and Tesco, Sainsbury's and the Co-op, who all pursued this appeal.
The decision will be welcomed by retailers from small convenience stores to large supermarket chains, who will now look to recover the estimated £300 million in business rates paid on ATM sites since 2010.
Emily Wood, partner at law firm DMH Stallard and head of the real estate dispute resolution team, represented Cardtronics throughout the litigation.
She said: "We have seen high streets across the country begin to struggle to survive, right through to now where the current pandemic has closed whole towns and isolated communities. As we move out of lockdown, it's essential that all that can be done is done, to open these high streets up and provide services to rural communities.
"Retaining the imposition of rates on ATMs would have had huge ramifications not only for the industry, but the provision of available cash to spend locally and where needed. More so than ever, in the current climate, the right decision has been upheld by the Court."
Punchline said: "This decision is good news for rural communities which have seen bank and ATM machines closing in recent years. It could now spell a return to better access to cash for villages and small towns."
Cardtronics is the world's largest ATM operator and manages nearly 300,000 machines, including around 20,000 are in the UK.
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