In a time of unprecedented uncertainty, the UK Government have released a number of measures to support Small Businesses and the Self Employed.
Self Employed (e.g. Freelancers/Contractors)
Self employed to receive 80% of their profit averaged for the previous three years (more details on this and the qualifying criteria here)
If you were due to make a self-assessment payment on 31 July 2020 for your ‘Payments on Accounts’ this will be deferred until 31 January 2021.
The government has temporarily suspended the Minimum Income Floor - this means that the self-employed can now apply for benefits such as Universal Credit at a rate equivalent to Statutory Sick Pay for employees. There is also the new style Employment and Support Allowance that may be available if you are sick depending on your circumstances.
Further information: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/new-style-employment-and-support-allowance.
Freelancer/contractors/businesses operating through a Limited Company
Company accounts filing can be delayed if needed.
Government is delaying the new private sector IR35 regime until 1 April 2021. (This is relevant to contractors who have been forced onto umbrella schemes or to go on the payroll).
Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme
Loan funding available via banks, the government will guarantee 80% of the loan. There will be no interest for the first 12 months. Its intention is to enable businesses to trade out of short-term difficulty so banks will still be checking your business/business proposal is viable as they normally would.
Corona Virus "Bounce Back" Loans
As of 4th of May 2020, the banks have opened applications for the “Bounce Back” loans for small businesses. The scheme is a 100% government backed loan initiative for small businesses who haven't received the other CBILS loans. More details on this and the qualifying criteria here.
If you are vat registered
VAT payments due between 20 March 2020 to 30 June 2020 have been deferred until March 2021.
If you owe money to HMRC
All businesses and self-employed people in financial distress, and with outstanding tax liabilities, may be able to seek a Time to Pay arrangement. These are on a case by case basis and tailored to individual circumstances. HMRC’s dedicated helpline is 0800 0159 559.
If you have your own commercial premises - already paying business rates & claiming Small Business Rate Relief
You are entitled to a cash grant of £10,000 - there is no need to apply, your local authority will be contacting you automatically.
If you have any staff on PAYE
You can apply for the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme, this will cover 80% of the payroll costs of workers who are furloughed (i.e. not working at all). Details have yet to be announced but it is likely to not apply to directors/business owners themselves - only their staff. It is based on staff employed on the payroll before the end of February, and is likely to be available to staff based on their salary prior to then. To be capped at £2,500 per month per employee.
The UK Government is updating the following page with the main details of the support available to businesses
If you need any more specific advice we would be happy to chat to anyone and point them in the right direction. The best way to get hold of us at this present time would be via email in the first instance at firstname.lastname@example.org and arrange a time for a call.
NB – Please note this list may not include all schemes available and advice may subsequently be altered to adjust to new requirements.