And not only that…it appears to be working! Today is the start of the process for anyone who is self-employed and eligible, to claim the Coronavirus Self-employment Income Support Scheme grant. It is actually a fairly simple process and the amount of grant that you will receive is explained to you there and then, which is nice.

What you will need:

-Your Unique Tax Reference Number (UTR) – you can find this on most letters from HMRC or on your Tax Return
-Your National Insurance number
-Your Government Gateway Login
-Your Bank account and sort code

To apply or check your eligibility follow the link here.

Things to note

There are a few pages to read through as you go through the process, they should help to answer some of those niggling questions in the back of your mind, such as ‘What if I’ve traded during this period?’ or ‘Will I be made to repay it if I don’t need it?’

The three main things they want you to initially confirm is:
-You traded in the tax year 2019/20
-You intend to continue to trade in tax year 20/21
-Your business has been adversely affected by coronavirus

If you can answer yes to all of these then chances are, you’re entitled to the grant and won’t be asked to repay any of it.

After you Claim

That being said, HMRC do reserve the right to withhold or recover payments if your claim:
-Is based on inaccurate information (if your previous tax returns turn out to be incorrect)
-Is paid in error – lord knows what that means!
-Is fraudulent or abusive or not made for the purposes described – I guess this might mean if business is now booming because of the pandemic, then maybe you shouldn’t necessarily apply – (maybe you make Covid-19 themed T-shirts/Mugs who knows)

The main things to note though, I’d say in terms of after the Grant is made, is the consideration that:

  1. This grant will need to be reported on your Tax return and is considered Taxable income
  2. This grant, as far we know, is all the support for Self-employed at the moment so make it count

Bounce back loans

Should you get to the page where the amount of Grant you’re to receive is displayed and it sends you into a blind panic that it isn’t anywhere near enough, then do remember there are a few other things out there to help. Chief among these are the Bounce Back loans. We have seen a high success rate of approvals for these in the last week or so, and the rates are highly competitive. For more information check out our post of these here.