Please find further published information regarding this here
Self-Employment Income Support Scheme - now aimed for mid-May 2020
This is a taxable grant, not a loan - HMRC have stated that they will contact eligible
self-employed people direct and request that people do not try to apply unless they
have been contacted as this will clog up their system. However,we are, of course,
watching out for this and will support our clients regarding this grant.
It was announced on 14 April 2020 that HMRC are aiming to contact "eligible" self-employed
by mid-May 2020, with details on how to claim; it is expected that payments will
be made by early June 2020.
The grant is calculated at 80% of your trading profits (up to a monthly maximum of
£2500) for three months. This scheme may be extended.
You can apply if you're a self-employed individual or a member of a partnership and
• have submitted your Income Tax Self Assessment tax return for the tax year
• traded in the tax year 2019-20
• are trading when you apply, or would be except for COVID-19
• intend to continue to trade in the tax year 2020-21
• have lost trading/partnership trading profits due to COVID-19
Your self-employed trading profits must also be less than £50,000 and more than half
of your income from self-employment. This has been modified so that the 50% rule
can be applied to 2018-19 or to the average for the tax years 2016-17, 2017-18 &
Please be aware of the multiple scams which are springing up - HMRC have clearly
stated that you will access this scheme only through www.gov.uk. If someone texts,
calls or emails claiming to be from HMRC, saying that you can claim financial help
or are owed a tax refund, and asks you to click on a link or to give information
such as your name, credit card or bank details, it is a scam. Here is a 'news' item
on such scams.
Limited Companies - Extension to Filing Deadlines
Companies House - Filing Accounts:
Businesses will be able to apply to Companies House for a 3-month extension on filing
their accounts. All companies who apply for an extension as a result of COVID-19
will automatically be granted the extension without needing to provide evidence.
HMRC - Filing of the Corporation Tax Return:
The same 3-month extension will apply to submission of the corporation tax return.
Please note: this only protects the company from the fixed penalty. The tax-geared
penalty will arise 18 months after the return period, if any tax remains unpaid at
the 18-month date.
VAT: Payment Deferral
The Chancellor announced that VAT Registered businesses could defer payment of any
VAT due for the quarters ending 29 February, 31 March & 30 April 2020 until the end
of the financial year - at present this means the end of March 2021 but everything
is under review. HMRC have said that there will be no interest or penalties for those
specific VAT quarters if paid on time next year.
However on 24 March 2020 the reminders were emailed to businesses in respect of the
current quarter to 31 March 2020 WITHOUT ANY CHANGE to the normal wording about payment
The "soft landing" for Making Tax Digital has been extended to 31 March 2021.
More details will follow as HMRC publish them
Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme
Under the scheme ALL employers will be able to access support of up to 80% of furloughed
employees' wages, ceiling £2500pcm. "Furloughed" employees are those designated by
an employer who would otherwise have to be laid off because of the impact of Coronavirus
on the business.
The mechanics for claiming this support will be via a new HMRC Portal. HMRC have
stated that they expect this to be up and running at the end of April 2020.
In his Briefing on 14 April 2020, the Chancellor announced that the new dedicated
Portal should be available on 20 April 2020. Payments are expected to take a very
few days to process. Further details will be posted when announced. Please see Coronavirus
Job Retention Scheme update.
2nd Instalment of Personal Tax on Account 2019/20
Normally payable by 31 July 2020 but has been deferred - as announced by the Chancellor.
You do not need to apply to defer the July 2020 payment - simply don't pay it. The
deferred tax (and NIC) will become payable by 31 January 2021.
Corporation Tax Payable 1 April 2020
HMRC have confirmed that the deferral relating to the payment of "business tax" includes
Corporation Tax. An application must be made in writing to HMRC or by calling the
new Helpline on 0800 015 9559. It is likely that the deferred Corporation Tax will
become payable on 31 January 2021.
Government Updates Emailed to you Direct
You can log on to the Government's special Coronavirus website for updated information,
both for financial help and containment measures by clicking here.
Once there you can choose to receive automatic government updates by email - you
can choose how often you receive these. You will need to click the link in the resulting
email to activate this service.
Note: when you access this site, scroll down for options.
Emergency Statutory Sick Pay
What are the new Statutory Sick Pay arrangements relating to Coronavirus, COVID-19?
In his Budget Statement on 11 March 2020, the Chancellor announced a change to the
Statutory Sick Pay rules to help small to medium-sized businesses finance staff absence
on relevant sick leave or who are required to self-isolate. PLEASE NOTE THAT COMPANY
DIRECTORS ARE ALSO EMPLOYEES AND WHERE THEY MEET THE OTHER CRITERIA THEN THESE NEW
RULES FOR CORONAVIRUS SSP WILL APPLY TO THEM TOO!
To quote "Statutory Sick Pay will also be available for all those who are advised
to self-isolate - even if they haven't yet presented with symptoms." It was seen
that there's a bit of "flexibility" in defining exactly what is meant by "advised
to self-isolate" but the announcement by the Prime Minister on Monday 16 March 2020
has helped to clarify this slightly.
We have extracted the following from HMRC's Bulletin issued to Employers for guidance
– see below.
If we deal with your payroll then we are advising you on this individually in advance
of running the end of year reports at the end of this month.
If you deal with your own payroll processing then you should find that your software
will have a "tab" labelled "SSP" where you will enter the SSP paid in the relevant
The rate of SSP is currently £95.85 pw (£94.25 pw in 2019/20) and for employees this
is usually paid from the 4th day of absence on sick leave. For Coronavirus related
absence SSP can be paid from Day 1 of the sick leave. The maximum period for payment
of SSP is 28 weeks, under normal rules but for self-isolating claims, ie without
being actually ill, then the maximum period of claim is 14 days, ie two calendar
The employer pays the SSP and subjects it to the deduction of income tax and national
insurance through their PAYE Scheme in the normal way.
Under normal SSP rules employers cannot reclaim SSP ie it is not a cost to the Government
but to even the smallest of employers – and that has been the case for many years
Under the special Coronavirus measures, employers with fewer than 250 employees are
able to reclaim the relevant SSP which they pay to those employees who are entitled
to it for a Coronavirus-related reason. The amount which the employer can reclaim
is only for the coronavirus SSP payments and only for a maximum of 14 days. This
gives a maximum reclaim for a qualifying employer for qualifying sick leave of £191.70
per employee (£188.50 if all SSP is for period in 2019/20 tax year).
As you can see from HMRC's bulletin below, details of how to reclaim the relevant
SSP will be published shortly.
Watch this space for updates....
- as at 16 April 2020 the HMRC Bulletins are still showing this as "not yet
HMRC Business Help & Support Emails: Budget 2020 - an extract in respect of Statutory
HMRC Budget 2020 measures which support businesses and employers on COVID-19:
The Chancellor has set out various measures to support public services, individuals
and businesses that may be affected by COVID-19. These include:
• For businesses with fewer than 250 employees, the cost of providing 2 weeks
of COVID-19 related statutory sick pay per employee will be refunded by the government
in full. This will provide 2 million employers with up to £2 billion to cover the
costs of large-scale sick leave. HMRC will provide further details in due course
on how employers can access the rebate. More information about this and regular updates
can be found on GOV.UK.
• A dedicated helpline has been set up to help businesses and self-employed
individuals in financial distress and with outstanding tax liabilities receive support
with their tax affairs. Through this, businesses may be able to agree a bespoke Time
to Pay arrangement.
If you are concerned about being able to pay your tax due to COVID-19, call HMRC's
dedicated helpline on 0800 0159 559.
Further details on other COVID-19 measures can be found on GOV.UK.