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Coronavirus / Covid-19

UPDDATE from Philip Rowberry  at at Thompson’s Accountants​, Hereford
Good Morning
I hope everyone is well and coping with this continuing lockdown.  Further to Boris speech, while the bones of a plan have been outlined he did emphasise strongly that it is malleable depending on how the pandemic progresses from here.  Still, people who cannot work from home have been encouraged to go back, so long as social distancing can be observed and so we hope that many of our clients and other businesses that have been closed since the lockdown started could begin to restart.  Remember that the furlough scheme was extended until 30th June, so there is no immediate urgency in that regard if you are a business that cannot reopen right away.  Further, the Chancellor is rumoured to be announce an extension of the scheme up to 30th September that will be reducing in its scale as time progresses.  The likelihood is that furlough grants will be reduced to 60%, but include an element of being able to work part time as a way of staging businesses back into full working order.
We expect detailed guidance later today on how businesses can provide safe working environments so I will update you as soon as we have digested this information.

Bounce Back Loans
These have been incredibly will received with many of our clients applying and receiving funds last week since they opened on Monday.  If you were not able to apply, or got turned down, please try again this coming week as the banks were carrying out essential maintenance to their systems over the weekend to clear various errors.  To remind you of the various details;

  • Apply online with your bank of choice (your own to begin with)
  • Borrow up to £50,000 – capped at 25% of your turnover
  • 2.5% interest
  • No interest, fees, or repayments for the first 12 months (these are being paid for by the Government)

These will likely be the best business loans ever available en masse and so it would be sensible to consider applying in order to cover any gaps in your working capital caused by Covid-19.  Also, if you borrow more than you need you will be able to repay within the 12 months without penalty, so plan for the worst but hope for the best.

If you need to borrow more than £50,000, then the loan becomes a CBIL.  These come under more scrutiny than the BBL but are still a very attractive loan with many of the same benefits.

As always, if you are struggling to get accepted for either a BBL or CBIL, please get in touch as we are able to help.

Self-Employed Income Support Scheme
HMRC are now fully engaged with preparing for the SEISS, which will see grants paid to the self-employed of up to £7,500.

The payment will be based on your Tax Returns from 2016/17 to 2018/19, with an average monthly amount being worked out and then 3 months paid out at 80%, capped at £2,500 (hence the £7,500 maximum over 3 months).  If you did not trade for the entirety of the three years then this will be averaged out for the period that you did.  This payment will be a single lump sum.

Please use the eligibility checker here https://www.tax.service.gov.uk/self-employment-support/enter-unique-taxpayer-reference to see if you will be able to claim – but please let me know if you need any assistance with this.
Generally, you will be eligible if;

  • You traded in the 2018/19 Tax Year and submitted your Tax Return before 23 April 2020
  • You continued to trade in 2019/20
  • You intend to continue to trade in 2020/21
  • You have been adversely affected by CV19
  • Your self-employed profits were less than £50,000 (averaged out over the 3 tax years where relevant)
  • Your self-employed profits equate to more than 50% of your overall income (averaged out over the 3 tax years where relevant)

But please use the checker to be sure.
The information that you will need for the claim is;

  • Your Unique Tax Reference (UTR)
  • Your NI Number
  • Your Government Gateway login details
  • Your Bank Account details

If you are unsure of your UTR or NI, please let me know.  If you do not yet have a Government Gateway login, you will be able to set one up when you check your eligibility – I am attaching a guide to help you do this.
The claims will be able to be made from the 13th May, but HMRC will issue the date that you can make yours – we suggest checking your eligibility asap as there is a suggestion that this might have a baring on your place in the ‘queue’.
Unfortunately, we cannot make the claim on your behalf, but if you need any assistance at all please let me know.
Guidance from this link https://www.gov.uk/guidance/claim-a-grant-through-the-coronavirus-covid-19-self-employment-income-support-scheme#howmuch
Kind regards
Philip Rowberry  ACCA FMAAT
Director

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