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Self Employed Update

29th September 2020

In the Chancellor’s recent statement it was announced that the Self Employment Income Support Scheme (SEISS) will be extended.

What Will the Grant Cover

 The grants are designed to cover a period of six months from when the current SEISS grant period comes to an end on 31 October 2020. This will cover the period from November 2020 to April 2021 and two instalments to cover three months’ worth of profits will be paid.

How Much is the Grant

 The grant provided for the first three months will cover 20% of average monthly trading profits. This is a significant reduction of the level of grants that have been offered to date at 80% and 70%.

The first instalment payment will be capped at £1,875 in total. The cap for the second instalment is being reviewed by HMRC and details will be confirmed at a later date.

It is worth noting that like the previous SEISS payments made, these grants will be subject to both income tax and National Insurance Contributions.

Who is Eligible to Claim

This is for self- employed individuals still (i.e. sole traders and members of a partnership). To qualify the individual would need to show the following:

  1. They are currently actively trading and that it is their intention to continue to trade as a sole-trader or a member of a partnership.
  2. That they would be currently be eligible for the SEISS scheme. However, they would not have had to make claims under the previous grants.
  3. They would have to declare that in the period concerned, they will be affected by a fall in demand to the Covid – 19 crisis in the qualifying period. The qualifying period is between the 1 November 2020 and the date the claim is submitted to HMRC.
  4. Like the previous schemes more than 50% of the applicants income needs to be from self-employed activity.
  5. Only those with less than £50,000 of trading profits in 2018/19, or failing that an average trading profit of less than £50,000 for the three years between 2016/17 – 2018/19 will be eligible.

How Will the Claim be Made

Like the previous SEISS applications, HMRC will identify those they believe to be eligible for the scheme and will invite them to take part. The applicant will then need to confirm they meet the eligibility criteria (much in the same way as they did before).

What About the Newly Self-Employed

HMRC confirmed that they will still not receive any assistance under this scheme. This is because they have yet to file a Tax Return and so HMRC claim they will not know their self-employed status.

For advice and guidance contact a member of our team, we are here to help.

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