Lockdown support for businesses - update (10 November 2020)
Posted on 10th November 2020 at 19:00
Last revised on 10 November 2020
The country’s second lockdown begins started on 5 November, but there’s still a lot of uncertainty about the implications for small business owners.
We’ll be keeping a close watch on new developments and announcements and will update this summary to keep you informed.
Currently we know the following:
Furlough (Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme or CJRS) has been extended until the end of March 2021. Your employees can be placed on furlough even if you haven’t accessed the scheme before. They will receive 80% of their salary for hours not worked, up to a maximum of £2,500 per month.
As an employer you will not need to contribute towards wages for hours not worked but will be asked to cover National Insurance (NI) and employer pension contributions. It’s estimated that, for an average claim, this will be equivalent to 5% of total employment costs or around £70 per employee per month.
Operation of the extended CJRS will be the same as the previous Scheme and businesses can claim shortly before, during or after running payroll.
Claims can be made from 8am on Wednesday 11 November. Claims made for November must be submitted to HMRC by no later than 14 December 2020 and on the 14th of each following month.
Claims can be made for employees who were employed and on the PAYE payroll on 30 October and employers must have made a PAYE Real Time Information (RTI) submission for them to HMRC between 20 March 2020 and 30 October 2020.
Employees that have been made redundant but who were employed and on the payroll on 23 September 2020 can be re-employed and claimed for, as long as RTI submissions to HMRC from 20 March 2020 to 23 September 2020 are available.
The extension to the CJRS will be reviewed in January.
Job Retention Bonus
This has been deferred from February to be used as a retention incentive at a later date.
Self-employed income support (SEIS)
The next self-employed income support grant covering November to January will increase from 55% to 80% of trading profits, up to a maximum of £7,500. The window for claiming the grant will open on 30 November, two weeks earlier than previously announced.
A further grant is proposed for February to April 2021, but details have not yet been announced.
Cash grants for businesses that have closed
Local authorities will receive additional money for Additional Restrictions Grant Funding (ARG) to support businesses. Cash grants of up to £3,000 per month are available for businesses that have been required to close due to coronavirus.
The government says it will extend the Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme and the Future Fund to the end of January 2021. Businesses are also likely to be able to top-up Bounce Back Loans where they have not yet claimed their maximum.
From today (10 November) you can top-up your Bounce Back Loans to your maximum amount. You must request the top-up by 31 January 2021.
Businesses with fewer than 250 employees can still use the Statutory Sick Pay Rebate Scheme, covering costs in full for up to 14 days per employee.
Additional support for businesses and individuals
The government has also indicated continued support for:
deferral of self-assessment tax payments on account
business rate relief for retail, hospitality and leisure businesses
a pause on evictions for commercial tenants
mortgage payment holidays for homeowners
payment holidays for consumer credit
increased Universal Credit and Housing benefit allowances
people on low incomes who have to self-isolate.
The government is publishing updates about financial support for businesses during coronavirus on its webpage.
If you would like some advice about your business finances during lockdown and the possible ongoing implications, please get in touch.
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