Earlier this month I wrote to you about the third round of the furlough scheme. If you don't run a payroll...you can ignore that. If you missed it, here's a link.
Let's look at the return of the Self-Employed Income Support Scheme:
You'll know the basics of the earlier SEISS grant applications and these remain unchanged. In other words, if you weren't eligible for the earlier grant, you won't get this one either. Sorry about that.
(There IS some other help out there, including interest-free loans, and rates grants. Let me know if you want to talk about these)
This next round of claims is designed to cover some of your lost income between November 2020 and January 2021.
How Much Can I Claim?
The gov'ts numbers moved about a bit (a lot!) over the last few months, but they have finally settled on 80% of your average 3-month trading profits. You won't have to do the calculations - HMRC will do that automatically - but if you think they might be wrong then give me a call and I'll have a look with you.
The maximum claim will be capped at £7,500
Am I Eligible?
The grant is designed to cover the period from Nov 20 - Jan 21, and of course most of that is in the future...so how can you know in advance if trade is affected?
Here's the word from the horse's mouth:
You must reasonably believe that you will suffer a significant reduction in trading profits due to coronavirus during the period 1 November to 29 January 2021.
You must keep evidence that shows how your business has been impacted by coronavirus resulting in less business activity than otherwise expected.
In other words, if your trade is already hit, then you can make a claim right away. If you're unsure, then hold on...you can make a claim anytime between 30th November and 29th January.
There is an important caveat: your profits must be down due to Covid. So, if you're an ice-cream seller and your trade is in line with last winter, but significantly down on the summer months, this is probably a seasonal variance rather than a Covid issue.
How Do I Claim?
Exactly the same as before...via your Government Gateway. Applications open on Monday 30th November. Inevitably the site will crash, so you might want to make your claim later in the week.
Did I hear a rumour of a fourth grant in the spring?
Yes. At the moment, it's only that - the gov't will "review the position" in the new year, and we expect there to be a fourth grant but at a much lower rate depending on how s***ed the economy still is. So, don't bank on anything.
However, I can promise I will let you know if/when there's more solid information on this.