Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme
You have the option of ‘furloughing’ employees (giving them a leave of absence) if they have no work to do and the Government will then pay 80% of the usual monthly wage costs (up to £2,500 a month), plus associated employer’s National Insurance contributions and the minimum automatic-enrolment employer pension contributions. Find out more
Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CBILS)
This scheme can give SMEs access to funding of up to £5 million for as long as six years. It includes a Business Interruption Payment that covers the first 12 months of interest payments, plus lender fees, to help keep initial costs low. Find out more
Bounce Back Loans scheme
From 4 May, small businesses will be able to use a short, straightforward form to borrow £2,000 to £50,000 and have the money within days. The loan is interest free for the first year, as the Government will cover the interest and fees, and companies won’t have to make repayments during this time. Find out more
Deferred VAT payments
Any VAT payment for a UK-registered business that is due between 20 March and 30 June can be deferred until 31 March 2021 (though you are free to pay it sooner). You still have to submit your return, of course, but you don’t have to tell HMRC if you want to defer the payment. Find out more
Deferred Self-Assessment payments
If you have a payment on account that’s due for 31 July 2020, you have the option of deferring it until January 2021. This is open to everyone, not just the self-employed, and you do not have to apply to benefit from the scheme.
Self-employment Income Support Scheme
If you are self-employed and have lost income as a result of the pandemic, you can claim up to 80% of your average profits over the last three years (up to £2,500 a month) for the next three months. In order to claim, you must have submitted your Self-Assessment tax return for 2018/19, have been trading in the last tax year and are still trading now. Your self-employed trading profits must also be below £50,000 and more than half of your income come from self-employment. Find out more
Sick pay support
The Government is currently developing plans to allow small and medium-sized businesses (those with up to 250 employees) to reclaim Statutory Sick Pay for absences due to COVID-19. More details should be available soon.
Support for retail, hospitality and leisure businesses in England
These businesses will have a business rates holiday for the 2020/21 tax year. You don’t have to do anything to claim, but there is guidance on eligibility. There is also a Retail and Hospitality Grant Scheme that can offer a cash grant of up to £25,000 per property (with the specific amount depending on a property’s rateable value). Eligible businesses will be contacted by their local authority, though there may be an applications process in some areas.
Business rates holiday for nurseries in England
These businesses will have a business rates holiday for the 2020/21 tax year. You don’t have to do anything to claim.
Small Business Grant Scheme
Businesses that pay little or no business rates, but still occupy a property, can receive a one-off grant of £10,000 to help with ongoing costs. Eligible businesses will be contacted by their local authority, though there may be an applications process in some areas.
Variations between countries in the UK
Many of these schemes are available throughout the UK, but there are also variations between countries. For country-specific information, please use these links: