Government support for Coronavirus

Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme

Who is it for: All businesses

Who will it help: Employees & Directors who can’t work because of coronavirus, earning up to £2,500 a month.

What we know: It’s a government scheme designed to encourage business owners to retain staff during periods of inactivity. It covers 80% of an employee’s salary, with the remaining 20% to be paid by the employer or forfeited by the employee depending on the employment contract and terms negotiated between those parties. This, assuming there are no exclusions will be quite useful for company directors as they can receive 80% of their directors salaries from the government.

What we don’t know: Are there any exclusions for company directors who are also shareholders? How is the regular salary measured for people with irregular incomes?

How to get it: Via a government portal, which is currently being built.

Deferring VAT and Income Tax payments

Who is it for: All businesses

Who will it help: Business owners (both self-employed and company owners)

What we know: The government has said that any VAT payment due in the next 3 months can be deferred by a year this also applies to the July payment on account for self-assessment tax bills but that will only be deferred until January 2021.

What we don’t know: If there are any interest rates being charged and if any reminders will be sent out from HMRC for the payments.

How to get it: Will automatically be given without having to call HMRC first

Support for businesses who are paying sick pay to employees

Who is it for: All businesses with less than 250 employees

Who will it help: Business owners (both self-employed and company owners, plus employees)

What we know: Sick pay is now available from day one of having to take time off because of the virus, compared to the usual day four. This support is now less relevant because of the job retention scheme, however if you have employees who can work not turning up because of virus fears while the rest of your workers are still active then this is useful as the government will cover two weeks’ worth of sick pay costs. They need to obtain an isolation note from the NHS 111 service or on the NHS website.

What we don’t know: How to claim it and any exclusions.

How to get it: Not sure yet, but it’s likely to be handled by us using our payroll software.

Time to pay service

Who is it for: All businesses

Who will it help: Business owners (both self-employed and company owners)

What we know: The usual time to pay service is still available and can be helpful in arranging a payment plan for your PAYE and Corporation tax bills.

What we don’t know: If HMRC are reducing the support in this area because of the generous VAT deferral scheme.

How to get it: You can find contact number at the following link: https://www.gov.uk/difficulties-paying-hmrc

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Support for businesses that pay little or no business rates

Who is it for: Businesses that have a premises and don’t pay business rates or only a small amount.

Who will it help: Business owners (both self-employed and company owners)

What we know: There will be a £10,000 grant given to these businesses, which is being distributed by local authorities.

What we don’t know: When the money will arrive and if there are restrictions on how it can be spent or if there is an application process.

How to get it: Wait for your local council to write to you with the next steps, or chase them up if you haven’t received it and everyone else has.

Support for businesses through the Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme

Who is it for: Small Businesses.

Who will it help: Business owners (both self-employed and company owners)

What we know: There’s a loan scheme for small businesses to cover the costs associated with the virus. This is mainly guaranteed by the government and should make it easier and faster to access funding.

What we don’t know: When the money will arrive and what the application process, interest rates or lending criteria are.

How to get it: This scheme will be delivered directly by banks, so it’s worth asking us for an introduction to a commercial finance broker if you don’t already have banking connections. There’s also information at the following link: https://www.british-business-bank.co.uk/ourpartners/coronavirus-business-interruption-loan-scheme-cbils/

These are the ones I feel are the most relevant to you, however please have a look at the link below for a full list of government support measures:

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/guidance-to-employers-and-businesses-about-covid-19/covid-19-support-for-businesses#support-for-businesses-that-pay-business-rates

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