What government support is available to my business during the pandemic?.
As the coronavirus pandemic continues, companies of all shapes and sizes are responding to challenges they have never faced before.
With this in mind, the UK Government has created a number of support schemes to help you through these unprecedented times if you have a business or if you’re self-employed.
Here’s a run-down of some of the business support available in the UK as of 30th April 2020. You can also use the UK Government’s Business Coronavirus Support Finder to see what schemes you may be eligible for.
Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme
If you have a small or medium-sized business which has been affected by coronavirus, you may be able to access finance up to £5 million for up to 6 years from the Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CBILS). The scheme is designed to support eligible businesses with an annual turnover of up to £45 million, by providing them with access to loans, overdrafts, invoice finance and asset finance.
Self Employed Income Support Scheme
If you're self-employed or a member of a partnership in the UK, and you’ve lost income due to coronavirus, you might be able to access a grant through the Self Employed Income Support Scheme. The scheme will allow you to claim a taxable grant worth 80% of your trading profits, up to a maximum of £2,500 a month. As of April 2020 it’s available for 3 months - but may be extended - and conditions apply.
Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme
If you’re unable to maintain your current workforce because your revenues and operations have been severely impacted by coronavirus, the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme allows eligible businesses to furlough employees and apply for a grant that covers 80% of their usual monthly wage costs up to £2,500 a month, plus the associated Employer National Insurance contributions and pension contributions (up to the level of the minimum automatic enrolment employer pension contribution) on that subsidised furlough pay.
Business Rates Holiday
If your business is in the retail, hospitality and leisure sectors in England, you may not have to pay business rates for the 2020 to 2021 tax year. You’re eligible for a Business Rates Holiday if your property is a:
- Restaurant, café, bar or pub
- Cinema or live music venue
- Assembly or leisure property - for example, a sports club, a gym or a spa
- Hospitality property - for example, a hotel, a guest house or self-catering accommodation
You don’t need to take any action to request a Business Rates Holiday as your local council will apply the discount automatically.
Business Support Grant
Support for small businesses, and businesses in the retail, hospitality and leisure sectors also take the form of two grant funding schemes, the Small Business Grant Fund and the Retail, Hospitality and Leisure Grant Fund. The schemes will be delivered by Local Authorities – if you are eligible, your Local Authority will be in touch with you to arrange payment.
Under the Small Business Grant Fund (SBGF) all eligible businesses in England in receipt of either Small Business Rates Relief (SBRR) or Rural Rates Relief (RRR) in the business rates system will be eligible for a payment of £10,000.
Under the Retail, Hospitality and Leisure Grant Fund (RHLG) eligible businesses in England in receipt of the Expanded Retail Discount (which covers retail, hospitality and leisure) with a rateable value of less than £51,000 will be eligible for a cash grants of £10,000 or £25,000 per property.
Coronavirus Statutory Sick Pay Rebate Scheme
The Coronavirus Statutory Sick Pay Rebate Scheme will repay employers the Statutory Sick Pay (SSP) that they provide to current or former employees for periods of sickness starting either on or after 13 March 2020.
The scheme allows you to claim up to 2 weeks of SSP for an employee, starting from the first day of sickness if an employee is unable to work because they have coronavirus or cannot work because they’re self-isolating or shielding in line with public health guidance. Employees don’t need to provide you with a doctor’s note in order for you to make a claim.
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