Rishi Sunak the chancellor of the exchequer yesterday announced an increase to the support for the self employed over the winter, to reflect the current health crisis.

For November, the grant aid will be 80% of profits rather than 40% as previously announced. December and January will remain at 40% which, as the SEISS grant is calculated quarterly basically means that the third instalment of the grant (to cover November and December 2020, and January 2021) will be calculated at 55% of a quarter’s profits.

Grants will also be paid faster with the claim window opening on 30th November rather than 14th December as originally planned.

The maximum grant will increase to £5,160.

To be eligible for the grant extension, self employed individuals, including members of partnerships, must have been previously eligible for the SEISS first and second grant (although they do not have to have claimed the previous grants).

They must declare that they intend to continue to trade, but have either been actively trading but  impacted by reduced demand due to coronavirus, or were previously trading but are temporarily unable to do so due to coronavirus.

Sadly, there are still no provisions for businesses operating as a limited company or those who started in self-employment after 5th April 2019

Who can apply? (a reminder of the original conditions)

You can apply for the grant if  you run your business as a sole trader or a partnership and you:

  • Submitted a tax return for the 2018-19 tax year

  • Were trading in 2019-20

  • Continuing to trade now (or would be if not for the covid outbreak)

  • Have suffered financially because of the outbreak

You must also satisfy ONE of the following conditions:

  • Trading profits of less than £50,000 in 2018-19, or

  • Average trading profits of less than £50,000 over the three years above

In all cases, your self-employed income must make up more than 50% of your total taxable income.

Who cannot apply?

You are ineligible for the grant if you:

  • Operate your business as a limited company

  • Your business is chiefly concerned with the letting of your own property

  • Annual trading profits (or average) exceeds £50,000

If you have any questions about the scheme, please email info@acumenica.co.uk or call us on 03330 166559. Our advisers continue to be available during normal office hours to respond to any queries.