Apply for the coronavirus Local Authority Discretionary Grants Fund

The Discretionary Grant Fund supports small and micro businesses that are not eligible for other grant schemes.

https://www.gov.uk/guidance/apply-for-the-coronavirus-local-authority-discretionary-grants-fund?utm_source=8247551a-e810-417d-ad13-7c4f118b5c15&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=govuk-notifications&utm_content=immediate

Small and micro businesses with fixed property costs that are not eligible for the Small Business Grant Fund or the Retail, Hospitality and Leisure Grant Fund may be eligible for the Discretionary Grants Scheme.

What you get

You can get a grant of £25,000, £10,000 or any amount under £10,000.

Eligibility

You’re eligible if your business:

  • is based in England
  • has fewer than 50 employees
  • has fixed building costs such as rent
  • was trading on 11 March 2020
  • has been adversely impacted by the coronavirus

We’ve asked local councils to prioritise businesses such as:

  • small businesses in shared offices or other flexible workspaces, such as units in industrial parks or incubators
  • regular market traders
  • bed and breakfasts paying council tax instead of business rates
  • charity properties getting charitable business rates relief, which are not eligible for small business rates relief or rural rate relief

Who cannot apply

You cannot apply if your business:

  • pays business rates
  • is in administration, insolvent or has received a striking-off notice

If you’re already claiming funding

You cannot apply if you’re already claiming under another government grant scheme, such as:

  • Small Business Grant Fund
  • Retail, Hospitality and Leisure Grant
  • Fisheries Response Fund
  • Domestic Seafood Supply Scheme
  • Zoos Support Fund
  • Dairy Hardship Fund

You’re still eligible if you’ve applied for the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme or the Self-Employed Income Support Scheme.

Businesses that apply for the Discretionary Grant Scheme can still apply for coronavirus-related loans if they’re eligible.

If you already get state aid

The Discretionary Grants Fund counts towards state aid.

Payments of £10,000 or less count towards the total de minimis state aid you’re allowed to get over a 3 year period – €200,000. If you have reached that threshold, you may still be eligible for funding under the COVID-19 Temporary Framework.

Payments of £25,000 count as state aid under the COVID-19 Temporary Framework. The limit for the framework is €800,000.

Your local council will ask you to complete a declaration confirming that:

  • you will not exceed the relevant state aid threshold
  • you were not an ‘undertaking in difficulty’ on 31 December 2019. This applies only to the COVID-19 Temporary Framework

How to apply

Visit your local council’s website to find out how to apply:

What happens next

Your local council will run an application process and decide whether to offer you a grant.

You do not have to pay the grant back but it will be taxable. Only businesses which make an overall profit once grant income is included will be subject to tax.

Published 29 May 2020

C19 BUSINESS NEWS UPDATE

Written 29 May 2020

PM: SIX PEOPLE CAN MEET OUTSIDE UNDER NEW MEASURES TO EASE LOCKDOWN

PM Boris Johnson announced groups of up to six people will be able to meet outdoors in England from Monday 1 June, provided strict social distancing guidelines are followed.

The Prime Minister announced the change as he set out a package to ease the lockdown in a way that is expected to keep the R rate down. Thanks to the public’s continued patience and hard work in helping to protect the NHS and contain the virus, the Prime Minister confirmed that the government’s five tests are being met. This means we can now move forward to the next phase of adjusting the lockdown.

A series of measures will be put in place in England from Monday 1 June in three core areas – schools, retail, and social contact.

Primary schools will welcome back children in Reception, Year 1 and Year 6 on 1 June, and nurseries and other early years settings will be reopened. On 15 June, secondary schools, sixth forms and colleges will begin to provide some face-to-face contact time for Year 10 and 12 and the equivalent groups in further education. This will help students prepare for exams next year, and we expect there to be around a quarter of these secondary students in at any point.

The Prime Minister has also acknowledged that some schools may not be able to reopen immediately and has committed the government to continuing to work with the sector to ensure any schools experiencing difficulties are able to open as soon as possible.

Thousands of high street shops, department stores and shopping centres will also begin to reopen in June.

Outdoor markets and car showrooms will be able to reopen from 1 June, provided they meet COVID-19 secure guidelines to protect shoppers and workers. All other non-essential retail should open from 15 June, as long as the government’s five tests are still being met and COVID-19 secure guidelines are followed.

Recognising the impact that lockdown is having on family and friends who have been unable to see each other, the Prime Minister announced today that from 1 June up to six people from different households will be allowed to meet outside, including in gardens and other private outdoor spaces.

The evidence shows that the risk of transmission is significantly lower outdoors and this step will mean that people can see more of their friends, family and loved ones.

It is critical that those from different households continue to stay 2 metres apart. And it remains the case that people should not spend time inside the homes of their friends and families, other than to access the garden or use the toilet.

Minimising contact with others is still the best way to prevent transmission. The Prime Minister was clear today that people should try to avoid seeing people from too many households in quick succession – so that we can avoid the risk of quick transmission between lots of different families and continue to control the virus. Those who are shielding should continue to do so. The Government recognises the toll this is taking on groups that have been asked to shield and hopes to say more soon on what further support we can provide.

See: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/pm-six-people-can-meet-outside-under-new-measures-to-ease-lockdown?utm_source=f2f5c8f0-bfa5-47a9-af8f-ad6fd469ac62&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=govuk-notifications&utm_content=immediate

PROVIDING FREE SCHOOL MEALS DURING THE CORONAVIRUS (COVID-19) OUTBREAK

Guidance for schools and local authorities on free school meals arrangements during the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak.

See: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/covid-19-free-school-meals-guidance?utm_source=47844816-b1c3-42aa-9473-a9328dc39bf1&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=govuk-notifications&utm_content=immediate

GUIDANCE ON HOW OPSS IS SUPPORTING BUSINESSES AND LOCAL AUTHORITIES AND PROTECTING CONSUMERS DURING THE CORONAVIRUS (COVID-19) PANDEMIC

The Office for Product Safety and Standards (OPSS) is focusing on the key issues surrounding Government measures to protect the public during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

During this challenging period, they are working with business to understand where regulatory requirements are preventing them delivering the products the public and NHS need.

OPSS

See: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/opss-coronavirus-covid-19-guidance-for-business-and-local-authorities?utm_source=fb5f25f1-814f-413e-ba01-89a292185152&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=govuk-notifications&utm_content=immediate

SAFER TRANSPORT GUIDANCE FOR OPERATORS

Safer working principles and risk assessment for transport operators and organisations.

This guide will help organisations, agencies and others (such as self-employed transport providers) understand how to provide safer workplaces and services for themselves, their workers and passengers across all modes of private and public transport. It outlines measures to assess and address the risks of coronavirus (COVID-19) in the transport sector across England.

Each transport provider will need to translate the principles and examples in this guidance into specific actions. It must be considered alongside legal duties and other guidance produced by the government and the relevant transport regulator for your mode. Transport providers should remain mindful of their obligations under both health and safety and employment legislation. The integrated nature of the UK’s public transport system makes it important that transport providers try to co- ordinate their planning and their actions with other providers.

DFT AND HSE LETTER

A letter from the Department for Transport and the Health and Safety Executive about access to toilet and washing facilities for drivers making deliveries.

Documnets

See: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/coronavirus-covid-19-safer-transport-guidance-for-operators?utm_source=c7dacb1f-ece9-45d3-b274-fd4d582c0d4a&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=govuk-notifications&utm_content=immediate

SAFER TRAVEL GUIDANCE FOR PASSENGERS

This guide will help you understand how to travel safely during the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak in England. It provides guidance for walking, cycling, using private vehicles (for example cars and vans), and travelling by taxis and public transport (for example trains, buses, coaches and ferries).

You should avoid using public transport where possible. Instead try to walk, cycle, or drive. If you do travel, thinking carefully about the times, routes and ways you travel will mean we will all have more space to stay safe.

See: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/coronavirus-covid-19-safer-travel-guidance-for-passengers?utm_source=1a1d0b56-f551-4924-b859-3ded37fa31d2&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=govuk-notifications&utm_content=immediate

The guide covers:

  • Walking and cycling
  • Public transport
  • Taxis and private hire vehicles
  • Private cars and other vehicles
  • Aviation, ferries and maritime transport
  • International travel
  • Checklists for safer travel

Journey

The guide is an essential read for all travellers.

CORONAVIRUS (COVID-19): GETTING TESTED

The Government has updated its guidance on coronavirus testing, including who is eligible for a test and how to get tested.

See: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/coronavirus-covid-19-getting-tested?utm_source=14ca7ce2-b9f7-414b-8bef-59a8fc58c8c7&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=govuk-notifications&utm_content=immediate

 

 

Local Authority Small Business Discretionary Grant – Buckinghamshire Council (check your local authority)

Grants of up to £10,000 will be delivered by Buckinghamshire Council to small and micro businesses that need help with ongoing fixed building-related costs such as rent, utilities and broadband.

In response to COVID-19, the government has put financial support in place for small businesses, and businesses in the retail, hospitality and leisure sectors. This is being delivered through the Small Business Grant Fund and the Retail, Leisure and Hospitality Grant Fund.

The Government has now announced an additional fund to support small businesses that were not eligible for the earlier funds. This is called the Local Authority Small Business Discretionary Grant and is being delivered by Buckinghamshire Council.

The launch of the Local Authority Small Business Discretionary Fund has been delayed until the week of June 1st 2020 due to changes in government guidance.

The application form will be available on this webpage as soon as the fund is live.

How much money will be available?

This is a top-up fund and Buckinghamshire Council has capped the amount payable in a single claim to a maximum of £10,000. The council can also make payments lower than £10,000 where evidence suggests that is appropriate.

When will the fund be available?

The fund will be open to accept applications from the week of June 1st 2020. You will be able to download the application form on this webpage.

Initial evaluation under the criteria and outlined priorities will be undertaken by Buckinghamshire Business First, on behalf of Buckinghamshire Council.

Once your claim has been approved, you will receive payment from Buckinghamshire Council as promptly as possible, usually within five days.

Who can apply?

Businesses must be a small or micro business with under 50 employees as defined by the Companies Act 2006 and must have been trading on 11th March 2020.

Applicants must also be able to demonstrate that they have seen a significant drop of income due to Coronavirus restriction measures.

Who is eligible?

It is expected that demand for these grants will be exceptionally high, and as such, priority will be given to:

  • Small businesses in shared offices or other flexible workspaces. Examples could  include units in industrial parks, science parks and incubators that do not have their own business rates assessment;
  • Regular market traders with fixed building costs, such as rent, who do not have their own business rates assessment;
  • Bed & Breakfasts that pay Council Tax instead of business rates; and
  • Charity properties in receipt of charitable business rates relief that would otherwise have been eligible for Small Business Rates Relief or Rural Rate Relief.

If your businesses is not on the above list, you may still apply and will need to supply evidence it falls into one of the following categories:

  • Businesses that occupy property, or part of a property, with a rateable value or annual rent or annual mortgage payments below £51,000
  • Businesses that can demonstrate that they have suffered a significant fall in income due to the COVID-19 crisis
  • Businesses with fewer than 50 employees, turnover of not more than £10.2 million, and a balance sheet of not more than £5.1 million
  • Businesses that were trading on or before 11th March 2020

Coronavirus Business Interruption Loans (CBILS) and Bounce Back Loans are not counted as cash grants and so those that have received loans through CBILS or the Bounce Back Loan scheme may still be eligible.

Businesses that have applied for the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme are eligible to apply.

Businesses that have applied for the Self-employment Income Support Scheme (SEISS) are eligible to apply.

Who is not eligible?

Business that have received cash grants from any central government COVID-19-related scheme are ineligible for funding from the Discretionary Grants Fund.

Such grant schemes include, but are not limited to: 

  • Small Business Grant Fund
  • Retail, Hospitality and Leisure Grant
  • The Fisheries Response Fund
  • Domestic Seafood Supply Scheme (DSSS)
  • The Zoos Support Fund
  • The Dairy Hardship Fund

What can the grants be used for?

This fund is to help businesses with ongoing fixed building-related costs. Your grant claim could also include costs such as rent, utilities (water, heat and light) and broadband provision, but will not cover costs such as cleaners or IT equipment hire.

In order to support your claim, you will need to provide evidence of these costs. Examples of proof include:

  • a signed Lease Agreement
  • a signed Licence Agreement
  • a signed Rental Agreement
  • a signed Mortgage Agreement
  • recent utility bills
  • recent broadband bills

The fund will pay out up to £10,000 to cover a maximum period of six months. If your claim is higher than £10,000 for a six month period, the grant will cover some, but not all, of your costs.

For example, if your rent is £2,000/month, the grant would cover five of the six months. If your rent is less than £1,666 a month, the grant will cover six months of your rental costs.

Will my grant be taxed?

Yes, the grant will be subject to tax. However, businesses that make a loss this financial year will pay no tax on grants. Only profitable businesses will be taxed.

In addition, you will need to agree that any grant made will be subject to State Aid rules and that you comply.

How do I apply?

The fund will be open to accept applications from the week of June 1st 2020. You will be able to download the application form on this webpage.

Initial evaluation under the criteria and outlined priorities will be undertaken by Buckinghamshire Business First, on behalf of Buckinghamshire Council.

Once your claim has been approved, you will receive payment from Buckinghamshire Council as promptly as possible, usually within five days

C19 BUSINESS NEWS UPDATE

Written 28 May 2020

C19 BUSINESS NEWS UPDATE

The Government launches its test and trace service today and has issued related guidance for England. There are equivalent arrangements for Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.

GOVERNMENT LAUNCHES NHS TEST AND TRACE SERVICE – ENGLAND

The new NHS Test and Trace service will launch today (Thursday 28 May) across England, the government announced.

 

The service will help identify, contain, and control coronavirus, reduce the spread of the virus, and save lives.

 

From 28 May, anyone who tests positive for coronavirus will be contacted by NHS Test and Trace and will need to share information about their recent interactions. This could include household members, people with whom they have been in direct contact, or within 2 metres for more than 15 minutes.

 

People identified as having been in close contact with someone who has a positive test must stay at home for 14 days, even if they do not have symptoms, to stop unknowingly spreading the virus.

 

If those in isolation develop symptoms, they can book a test at: https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/ or by calling 119.

 

If they test positive, they must continue to stay at home for 7 days or until their symptoms have passed. If they test negative, they must complete the 14-day isolation period.

Members of their household will not have to stay at home unless the person identified becomes symptomatic, at which point they must also self-isolate for 14 days to avoid unknowingly spreading the virus.

 

See: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/government-launches-nhs-test-and-trace-service?utm_source=abb6a36c-ca64-497a-8db4-7581559a9730&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=govuk-notifications&utm_content=immediate

NHS TEST AND TRACE: WORKPLACE GUIDANCE – ENGLAND

 

Guidance on the NHS test and trace service for employers, businesses and workers.

The NHS test and trace service forms a central part of the government’s coronavirus recovery strategy, which seeks to help the nation return to normal as soon as possible for as many people as possible, in a way that is safe and protects the NHS and social care sector.

this service will also play an important vital role in providing an early warning if COVID-19 activity is increasing locally, regionally or nationally. This information will then be used to inform the government’s approach to stop the spread of the virus.

 

This guidance explains how employers and businesses can play their part in the NHS test and trace programme to slow the spread of the virus, protect the health and care system and save lives.

 

See guidance here:  https://www.gov.uk/guidance/nhs-test-and-trace-workplace-guidance?utm_source=3ad1e505-7776-4963-b366-f718239cf904&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=govuk-notifications&utm_content=immediate

 

This guidance should be used in conjunction with Working safely during coronavirus (COVID-19): https://www.gov.uk/guidance/working-safely-during-coronavirus-covid-19

By following the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) guidance, employers can reduce the risk of co-workers having to self-isolate if a member of staff tests positive for COVID-19.

 

This guidance is for England only. There are equivalent arrangements for Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.

 

 

GUIDANCE FOR CONTACTS OF PEOPLE WITH POSSIBLE OR CONFIRMED CORONAVIRUS (COVID-19) INFECTION WHO DO NOT LIVE WITH THE PERSON

 

This guidance is for people who have been notified by NHS Test and Trace that they are a contact of a person who has had a positive test result for coronavirus (COVID-19).

 

See: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/guidance-for-contacts-of-people-with-possible-or-confirmed-coronavirus-covid-19-infection-who-do-not-live-with-the-person?utm_source=3154fbc7-602f-48ad-8d76-e5daa1648235&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=govuk-notifications&utm_content=immediate

GUIDANCE FOR HOUSEHOLDS WITH POSSIBLE CORONAVIRUS INFECTION

 

Stay at home guidance for households with possible coronavirus (COVID-19) infection.

 

See: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/covid-19-stay-at-home-guidance?utm_source=f7645d37-af93-4ea1-b844-654de9bd234f&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=govuk-notifications&utm_content=immediate

 

 

 

HELP AND SUPPORT IF YOUR BUSINESS IS AFFECTED BY CORONAVIRUS (COVID-19)

 

Watch videos and register for the free webinars to learn more about the support available to help you deal with the economic impacts of coronavirus.

 

See:  https://www.gov.uk/guidance/help-and-support-if-your-business-is-affected-by-coronavirus-covid-19?utm_source=a4b7c6f4-7063-4d88-957b-b68d6480a86d&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=govuk-notifications&utm_content=immediate

 

 

 

COVID-19: SCOTLAND EXTENDS REFUND PERIOD FOR SECOND-HOME PURCHASE TAX

 

21 May: Homeowners in Scotland temporarily have three years to sell their home after buying a replacement property and claim a refund of land and buildings transaction tax (LBTT).

In light of the coronavirus pandemic’s impact on the housing market, the Scottish Parliament is temporarily extending the time period in which homeowners have to sell their main home after buying a replacement property and be able to claim a rebate on LBTT.

 

In Scotland the purchase of a second home is subject to an additional amount of LBTT equating to 4% of the purchase price. Where the second home is a replacement home, but there is a delay in selling the original home, a refund of the additional LBTT can be claimed where the first home is sold within 18 months of the new purchase.

 

Acknowledging that the stalling of the residential property market has made the 18 month time limit more difficult to achieve, the Scottish Parliament is temporarily extending the period to three years where the second home was purchased between 24 September 2018 and 24 March 2020.

 

The Coronavirus (Scotland) (No.2) Bill also provides Scottish Ministers with the power to extend the purchase period the measure applies to, as well as the length of the sale period, if necessary.

 

The extension of the period for selling the original property to three years temporarily brings Scotland into line with the stamp duty land tax rules on replacement properties in England and Northern Ireland and the land transaction tax rules in Wales.

 

 

HMRC CHANGING THEIR FORMS

 

HMRC is creating new versions of their forms that do not depend on Adobe Reader. Whilst this work is in progress the following methods can be used to make sure the form will download or open in Adobe Reader:

 

  • whatever browser you use, review your settings to make Adobe Reader the default program for opening PDF documents
  • Windows users should right click on the form link then select ‘Save target as’ or ‘Save link as’
  • Mac users should right click on the form link then select ‘Save linked file as’
  • save the form – the recommended place is in the documents folder
  • using Adobe Reader, you can open the form

 

If the form still does not open, then contact the Online Services helpdesks for more help: https://www.tax.service.gov.uk/information/helpdesk?_ga=2.76986517.1698182565.1590394490-1794852922.1586417949

 

 

TELL HMRC ABOUT AN OPTION TO TAX LAND AND BUILDINGS

 

Use form VAT1614A to tell HMRC of an option to tax land or buildings.

 

To help businesses during coronavirus (COVID-19) HMRC have made temporary changes to the time limit and how you notify an option.

 

The changes apply to decisions made between 15 February 2020 and 30 June 2020.

Before you start, check the changes to the time limit and how you notify an option to tax land and buildings.

 

This guidance will be updated when this change ends.

 

You should only complete this form to notify HMRC of your decision to opt to tax land and or buildings.

 

See: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/vat-notification-of-an-option-to-tax-land-andor-buildings-vat1614a?utm_source=92a2b270-c67f-40d7-add4-0fe572147282&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=govuk-notifications&utm_content=immediate

 

 

 

MOT CENTRE AND TESTER GUIDANCE

 

Rules on opening

 

Garage or MOT centres can open and carry out MOT tests.

The Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA) has published guidance for vehicle owners that says:

  • they should still get an MOT if it expires before 30 March 2020
  • if their MOT due date expires from 30 March 2020 it will be extended by 6 months

An MOT centre can stay open after 30 March 2020 to carry out MOTs if you need to. This could include retests or tests of a vehicle that had an MOT due before 30 March.

 

Garages can also stay open to carry out repairs or services as well.

 

See: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/coronavirus-mot-centre-and-tester-guidance

 

 

 

 

KEEPING COURT AND TRIBUNAL BUILDINGS SAFE, SECURE AND CLEAN

 

This page provides details about security, cleaning and social-distancing arrangements in court and tribunal buildings during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

 

See:  https://www.gov.uk/guidance/keeping-court-and-tribunal-buildings-safe-secure-and-clean?utm_source=eebef7a2-8932-4d69-9e07-0c95bd6b494f&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=govuk-notifications&utm_content=immediate

 

 

 

C19 BUSINESS NEWS UPDATE

Written 26 May 2020

PRIME MINISTER SETS OUT TIMELINE FOR RETAIL TO REOPEN IN JUNE

Prime Minister Boris Johnson sets out a timeline for retail to reopen in June.

Thousands of high street shops, department stores and shopping centres across England are set to reopen next month once they are COVID-19 secure and can show customers will be kept safe, the Prime Minister Boris Johnson has confirmed today.

The Prime Minister has set out:

  • Outdoor markets and car showrooms will be able to reopen from 1 June, as soon as they are able to meet the COVID-19 secure guidelines to protect shoppers and workers. As with garden centres, the risk of transmission of the virus is lower in these outdoor and more open spaces. Car showrooms often have significant outdoor space and it is generally easier to apply social distancing.
  • All other non-essential retail including shops selling clothes, shoes, toys, furniture, books, and electronics, plus tailors, auction houses, photography studios, and indoor markets, will be expected to be able to reopen from 15 June if the Government’s five tests are met and they follow the COVID-19 secure guidelines, giving them three weeks to prepare.

Businesses will only be able to open from these dates once they have completed a risk assessment, in consultation with trade union representatives or workers, and are confident they are managing the risks. They must have taken the necessary steps to become COVID-19 secure in line with the current Health and Safety legislation.

The government is taking action to help businesses re-open and protect their staff and customers, including:

Publishing updated COVID-secure guidelines for people who work in or run shops, branches, and stores, after consultation with businesses, union leaders, Public Health England and the Health and Safety Executive.

Working with local authorities to continue to carry out spot checks and follow up on concerns by members of the public.

The updated guidance considers the best practice demonstrated by the many retailers which have been allowed to remain open and have applied social distancing measures in store. Measures that shops should consider include placing a poster in their windows to demonstrate awareness of the guidance and commitment to safety measures, storing returned items for 72 hours before putting them back out on the shop floor, placing protective coverings on large items touched by the public such as beds or sofas, and frequent cleaning of objects and surfaces that are touched regularly, including self-checkouts, trolleys, coffee machines and betting terminals, for example.

The vast majority of businesses will want to do everything possible to protect their staff and customers, but tough powers are in place to enforce action if they do not, including fines and jail sentences of up to two years.

As per the roadmap, hairdressers, nail bars and beauty salons, and the hospitality sector, remain closed, because the risk of transmission in these environments is higher where long periods of person to person contact is required.

STATUTORY SICK PAY – GOVERNMENT CALCULATOR OPEN

The calculator to claim back SSP due to Coronavirus is now live on the Government website.

See: https://www.gov.uk/calculate-statutory-sick-pay

SSP Calc

You are only responsible for paying SSP if:

  • you pay Class 1 National Insurance contributions for your employee (or would do if not for their age or their level of earnings)
  • your employee was sick for 4 or more days in a row (including non-working days)
  • your employee has told you they’re sick within your own time limit (or 7 days if you do not have one)

You cannot use the calculator for periods of sickness before 6 April 2011.

Contact us if you need assistance. We can help you complete any claim(s).

GENERAL GOVERNMENT ANNOUNCEMENTS

Over the Bank holiday weekend, the Government has been busy outlining new funding and changes to legislation. Below is a summary of key announcements. Please scan through these as some will be important to you, your business, and your loved ones.

Coronavirus outbreak FAQs: what you can and cannot do

The most frequently asked questions on what you can and can’t do during the coronavirus outbreak.

See: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/coronavirus-outbreak-faqs-what-you-can-and-cant-do?utm_source=c8e98732-5687-4ced-8368-f7ecd3e73714&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=govuk-notifications&utm_content=immediate

Business support grant funding – guidance for local authorities

Guidance for local authorities setting out details of the Small Business Grants Fund (SBGF) and Retail, Hospitality and Leisure Grant Fund (RHLGF).

See: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/coronavirus-covid-19-guidance-on-business-support-grant-funding?utm_source=1bc31221-7a64-4a82-8e9f-88e1fd4a4bc4&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=govuk-notifications&utm_content=immediate

Reallocating road space in response to COVID-19: statutory guidance for local authorities

New Road Layout for social distancing

Guidance for local authorities on managing their road networks in response to the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak.

Advice to local authorities on reallocating road space to:

  • encourage cycling and walking
  • enable social distancing

in response to COVID-19 issues. This statutory guidance is made under section 18 of the Traffic Management Act 2004.

Guidance on the phased return of sport and recreation

Guidance for the public, providers of outdoor sport facilities, elite athletes, personal trainers and coaches on the phased return of sport and recreation.

See: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/coronavirus-covid-19-guidance-on-phased-return-of-sport-and-recreation?utm_source=586c784b-fae0-4b93-83c0-f584f1aeecb5&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=govuk-notifications&utm_content=immediate

Staying safe outside your home

This guidance sets out the principles you should follow to ensure that time spent with others outside your home is as safe as possible. If you are clinically vulnerable or extremely vulnerable, you should follow the guidance on social distancing and for vulnerable people and you can also get support.

See:  https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/staying-safe-outside-your-home?utm_source=c9fe7da3-d934-4bdb-abf6-7444bea5fe36&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=govuk-notifications&utm_content=immediate

Remote education during coronavirus

Information, guidance and support for teachers and leaders on educating children during the coronavirus outbreak.

This page and information for parents will be updated regularly to include further resources and reflect the latest information and developments.

See: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/remote-education-during-coronavirus-covid-19?utm_source=7bdeea2e-9ac6-4b33-a849-8665f61cbf9a&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=govuk-notifications&utm_content=immediate

PM confirms schools, colleges, and nurseries on track to begin phased reopening

Schools, colleges, and nurseries across England remain on track to open to more children from 1 June, the Prime Minister confirmed today (24 May 2020).

Primary schools will welcome back children in Reception, Year 1 and Year 6, while nurseries and other early years providers will begin welcoming back children of all ages.

Secondary schools, sixth forms and colleges will also provide face-to-face contact for Year 10, Year 12 and equivalent 16-19 further education students to help them prepare for exams next year. It is expected this will begin from 15 June, with around a quarter of these secondary students in at any point.

See: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/pm-confirms-schools-colleges-and-nurseries-on-track-to-begin-phased-reopening?utm_source=bd825779-ed8a-4a73-b97f-2ea8706d36c4&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=govuk-notifications&utm_content=immediate

Additional funding for local authorities to support new test and trace service

Local authorities will be central to supporting the new test and trace service across England, with the government providing a new funding package of £300 million.

Each local authority will be given funding to develop tailored outbreak control plans, working with local NHS and other stakeholders.

Work on the plans will start immediately. Their plans will focus on identifying and containing potential outbreaks in places such as workplaces, housing complexes, care homes and schools.

See: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/300-million-additional-funding-for-local-authorities-to-support-new-test-and-trace-service?utm_source=c5091b80-9b26-41e5-a069-b549e9451e66&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=govuk-notifications&utm_content=immediate

Financial support for voluntary, community and social enterprise (VCSE) organisations to respond to coronavirus

The government has pledged £750 million to ensure VCSE can continue their vital work supporting the country during the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak, including £200 million for the Coronavirus Community Support Fund, along with an additional £150 million from dormant bank and building society accounts.

See: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/financial-support-for-voluntary-community-and-social-enterprise-vcse-organisations-to-respond-to-coronavirus-covid-19?utm_source=03c3e55f-a62b-4b1e-8033-249b50bfa282&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=govuk-notifications&utm_content=immediate

£50 million Funding to support the recovery of high streets

The Reopening High Streets Safely Fund will help councils in England introduce a range of safety measures in a move to get people back to work and customers back to the shops.

To prepare for the reopening of non-essential retail when the scientific advice allows, the Reopening High Streets Safely Fund will help councils in England introduce a range of safety measures in a move to kick-start local economies, get people back to work and customers back to the shops.

It will also support a range of practical safety measures including new signs, street markings and temporary barriers. This will help get businesses get ready for when they can begin trading safely, not only in high streets and town and city centres, but also in other public spaces like beachfronts and promenades.

Councils will also be able to use this money to develop local marketing campaigns to explain the changes to the public and reassure them that their high streets and other commercial areas are safe.

It is the government’s ambition to reopen non-essential retail in a phased way from 1 June, subject to the scientific advice. The government will set out further detail on how and when these can reopen safely shortly.

See: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/50-million-boost-to-support-the-recovery-of-our-high-streets?utm_source=a66dbfa1-4808-44f7-94d9-56af80c1f2c2&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=govuk-notifications&utm_content=immediate

Reopening High Streets Safely Fund guidance

Guidance to help local authorities and partners to deliver activities supported through the Reopening High Streets Safely Fund.

See: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/reopening-high-streets-safely-fund-guidance?utm_source=5f8590d8-6723-4259-b449-f6059b1e51f1&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=govuk-notifications&utm_content=immediate

Additional funding to support Citizens Advice service 

Citizens Advice and Citizens Advice Scotland to receive funding of up to £15 million to help them deal with increased demand during the COVID-19 pandemic.

See:  https://www.gov.uk/government/news/up-to-15-million-to-support-the-citizens-advice-service-during-covid-19-pandemic?utm_source=d4c0cc65-da07-4b89-bd75-3236f3507ddd&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=govuk-notifications&utm_content=immediate

Plans announced for London’s Covid-19 recovery

A new London Transition Board will co-ordinate London’s response as it emerges from the lockdown and begins to reopen its economy while controlling the virus.

See:  https://www.gov.uk/government/news/plans-announced-for-london-s-covid-19-recovery?utm_source=0e20791a-5f99-4406-a146-f82d5d350ebb&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=govuk-notifications&utm_content=immediate

Transport Secretary announces new measures to “keep passengers safe now and level up for the future”

Funding to protect and increase transport services, level up infrastructure and regenerate local economies after the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak.

  • additional funding to increase frequency and capacity of bus, tram and light rail services, to help people travel safely
  • further investment in railways to regenerate local economies and level up Britain
  • preferred route announced for £1 billion upgrade to major road link which runs across Northern Powerhouse, from Teeside to Cumbria.

See:  https://www.gov.uk/government/news/transport-secretary-announces-new-measures-to-keep-passengers-safe-now-and-level-up-for-the-future?utm_source=995d1a50-29b0-4336-9eee-11e5b218d198&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=govuk-notifications&utm_content=immediate

Safer travel guidance for passengers

Walking, cycling, and travelling in vehicles or on public transport during the coronavirus outbreak.

See: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/coronavirus-covid-19-safer-travel-guidance-for-passengers?utm_source=a6b7b029-5d8b-4656-8002-7eb4302be59d&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=govuk-notifications&utm_content=immediate

Guidance on accessing green spaces safely

This guidance sets out the key principles of enjoying the benefits of being outside, while protecting yourself and others from coronavirus.

The risk of the coronavirus being passed on to others outdoors is considered to be low as long as people maintain social distancing.

In England you can leave your home to exercise and spend time outdoors for recreation.

When travelling to outdoor spaces, it is important that people respect the rules in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. Do not travel to different parts of the UK where it would be inconsistent with guidance or regulations issued by the relevant devolved administration.

In England, you can now:

  • spend time outdoors, including exercise, alone, with your household, or with one person who is not in your household as long as you stay two metres apart
  • exercise more than once a day
  • take part in other outdoor sports and activities, including fishing – on your own, with your household, or with one other person while adhering to social distancing rules
  • drive to outdoor open spaces, including beaches and beauty spots, irrespective of distance – you should travel in a private vehicle, alone or with members of your own household
  • visit gardens and land maintained for public use as an alternative open space to spend time outdoors, although buildings and amenities such as cafes will remain closed and access may be limited to members or those with tickets to ensure social distancing. You should check ahead and follow social distancing guidelines
  • go swimming in either lakes or the sea as part of daily exercise provided that social distancing guidelines are observed – you cannot use public indoor and outdoor pools
  • all forms of water sports practiced on open waterways, including sailing, windsurfing, canoeing, rowing, kayaking, surfing, paddle-boarding and the use of privately-owned motorised craft (in line with the guidance issued by the relevant navigation authority) are allowed – you can continue to use towpaths for walking, running and cycling, being mindful of other users and people living in boats along the water

There are no restrictions on how far you can travel to get to the countryside. However, you should not stay overnight. Campsites and caravan parks are closed, and you cannot visit a holiday or second home.

To stay safe, you must:

  • take hygiene precautions when you are outside
  • wash your hands as soon as you are back indoors
  • keep at least two metres apart from anyone outside your household at all times
  • take hand sanitiser with you when you set off in case there are no handwashing facilities

See: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/coronavirus-guidance-on-access-to-green-spaces?utm_source=4f652c90-f1e8-4eef-bd9a-449d84143950&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=govuk-notifications&utm_content=immediate

Essential international travel guidance

This page provides guidance on travel during the COVID-19 pandemic. The Foreign & Commonwealth Office advises against all but essential travel.

See: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/coronavirus-covid-19-essential-international-travel-guidance?utm_source=7b8202e9-6fb1-483f-b9ea-26865840612c&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=govuk-notifications&utm_content=immediate

Providing home care

The document brings together guidance for social care staff, registered providers, local authorities and commissioners who support and deliver care to people in their own homes in England.

It covers:

  • personal protective equipment
  • shielding and care groups
  • hospital discharge and testing
  • government support for social care
  • information collection and governance

 

See: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/coronavirus-covid-19-providing-home-care?utm_source=ccac70cb-8dfd-4f27-a013-aa369a4ff844&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=govuk-notifications&utm_content=immediate

Travellers exempt from UK border rules

This guidance explains who will be exempt from new UK border rules introduced due to coronavirus. The rules will apply to travellers to the UK from 8 June 2020.

Some travellers will be exempt from new UK border rules introduced to due to coronavirus. This means they may not need to provide their journey or contact details or self-isolate for 14 days after they arrive in the UK.

See:  https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/coronavirus-covid-19-travellers-exempt-from-uk-border-rules?utm_source=5d7187f7-1ca2-44ff-87a6-7aaa4375a0ef&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=govuk-notifications&utm_content=immediate

Support for care homes

The government has announced a new care homes support package backed by a £600 million adult social care infection control fund. This has been introduced to tackle the spread of COVID-19 in care homes. This guidance provides information on the support package.

The government has written to councils and care providers outlining the details of the support package and has provided additional advice and resources to help stop the spread of infection.

See: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/coronavirus-covid-19-support-for-care-homes?utm_source=30d7e376-f6f6-4990-af18-191af21d2a4b&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=govuk-notifications&utm_content=immediate

Monitoring emissions from some environmental permitting activities: RPS C7

When you can delay and reschedule some emissions to air and water monitoring and other environmental monitoring because of COVID-19 (coronavirus) restrictions.

This COVID-19 regulatory position statement (RPS) applies to the following activities permitted under the Environmental Permitting (England and Wales) Regulations (2016):

  • installations
  • waste operations
  • radioactive substances (nuclear or non-nuclear) activities
  • water discharge and groundwater activities

We normally expect all permit holders to comply in full with all the conditions in their permits. This includes conditions requiring them to monitor emissions to air and water and do other environmental monitoring.

If you follow the conditions in this COVID-19 RPS, you can make certain reasonable adjustments to those monitoring requirements. For example, you can delay and reschedule some of those specified in your permit.

This COVID-19 RPS only applies if you cannot comply with the monitoring requirements specified in your permit due to coronavirus (COVID-19) restrictions.

You must get written agreement from the Environment Agency before you use this COVID-19 RPS.

See:  https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/monitoring-emissions-from-installations-radioactive-substances-and-waste-activities-rps-c7?utm_source=dffe0275-94cc-4e4c-b271-0ab472684a57&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=govuk-notifications&utm_content=immediate

 

 

 

C19 BUSINESS NEWS UPDATE

Written 22 May 2020

Time to reflect and plan ahead

As we emerge slowly from lockdown, now is a good time to take stock of things and look ahead to how we can run our businesses with the “New Normal” environment we face.

What is clear is that some form of social distancing will remain, and many businesses are adopting new ways of working within the rules. The Government has published guidance to assist employers: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/working-safely-during-coronavirus-covid-19

Please keep reviewing these guidelines as they change regularly.

Government supports continue. The Job Retention scheme has been extended until October, although we are not yet sure what percentage of support the Government will provide post July.

Self-employed income support grants are open for applicants on-line and we have no confirmation yet as to whether the Government will extend the scheme. If and when they do, we will provide you with further information.

The online service you will use to reclaim Statutory Sick Pay (SSP) will be available from 26 May 2020. See:    https://www.gov.uk/guidance/claim-back-statutory-sick-pay-paid-to-employees-due-to-coronavirus-covid-19

You can find out what Government supports are available here: https://www.gov.uk/business-coronavirus-support-finder

We have been helping many clients with bank loans and VAT deferral so please contact us about the loans available if you have not already done so.

The reality of the situation is that not all businesses are going to survive. If your customers are in isolation and cannot get to you or you cannot deliver or they cannot pay you, there is the reality of reduced or no sales for the next few months and even beyond if the virus remains.

It is worth remembering that the situation we face is one we cannot change. What you can do is stay healthy and ensure your loved ones are too. After all, if the business closes and you are healthy you can start again. The reverse is not true.

Many businesses are re-purposing or pivoting their operations and are adapting to the new ways of doing things. We are helping them with digital bookkeeping and forecasting with “What if” scenarios so they can look at all angles of their businesses.

So, here is what you need to do right now:

  1. Stay healthy, follow the Government guidelines for you, your family, co-workers, employees and community. Work from home where you can manage administration.
  2. Plan – what will your business look like in six months’ time? The best way to predict your future is to create it.
  3. So, take time to look at your business, Strengths, Weaknesses. Opportunities and Threats. Make notes, involve everyone. Brainstorm. Draft a written plan.
  4. Work out your expenses (including salaries) for the next six months.
  5. Estimate your cash flow over the next six months. We have the tools to help.
  6. If you need help in doing these calculations talk to us – we can talk you through these for you. Without the figures you cannot make clear decisions.
  7. Once you have a grasp on your figures and you consider you have a “viable” business (can you survive for the next six months?):
    1. Get your members of staff involved in a discussion of likely trading conditions and get their input on reducing costs and maintaining revenues.
    2. Review your list of products and services and eliminate those that are unprofitable or not core products/services.
    3. Get rid of won’t pay customers.
    4. Review your debtors list and chase up overdue invoices (if appropriate).
    5. Offer existing debtors extended payment terms and/or discounts.
    6. Agree extended payment terms with all suppliers in advance.
    7. Put extra effort into making sure your relationships with your better customers are solid.
    8. If your business is not viable – talk to us and we will run through the options.

Above all stay strong! Remember your health and welfare is more important than anything else just now. We will help you every step of the way. Together we will get through this!

 

 

 

 

C19 BUSINESS NEWS UPDATE

Written 20 May 2020

CORONAVIRUS STATUTORY SICK PAY REBATE SCHEME SET TO LAUNCH

Employers will be able to make claims through the Coronavirus Statutory Sick Pay Rebate Scheme from 26 May.

The government has announced a new online service will be launched on 26 May for small and medium-sized employers to recover Statutory Sick Pay (SSP) payments they have made to their employees.

Employers are eligible if they have a PAYE payroll scheme that was created and started before 28 February 2020 and they had fewer than 250 employees before the same date.

The repayment will cover up to 2 weeks of SSP and is payable if an employee is unable to work because they:

  • have coronavirus; or
  • are self-isolating and unable to work from home; or
  • are shielding because they have been advised that they are at high risk of severe illness from coronavirus

 

You can check if your business can claim back Statutory Sick Pay paid to employees due to coronavirus (COVID-19) here: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/claim-back-statutory-sick-pay-paid-to-employees-due-to-coronavirus-covid-19

This scheme will allow small and medium-sized employers, with fewer than 250 employees, to apply to HMRC to recover the costs of paying coronavirus-related SSP.

Employers will be able to make their claims through a new online service from 26 May. This means they will receive repayments at the relevant rate of SSP that they have paid to current or former employees for eligible periods of sickness starting on or after 13 March 2020.

To prepare to make their claim, employers should keep records of all the SSP payments that they wish to claim from HMRC.

Further information

The current rate of SSP is £95.85 per week (before 5 April the rate was £94.25).  Employers can choose to go further and pay more than the statutory minimum. This is known as occupational or contractual sick pay.

Where an employer pays more than the current rate of SSP in sick pay, they will only be able to reclaim the SSP rate.

The scheme covers all types of employment contracts, including:

  • full-time employees
  • part-time employees
  • employees on agency contracts
  • employees on flexible or zero-hour contracts

Note: Other SSP eligibility criteria apply.

Connected companies and charities can also use the scheme if their total combined number of PAYE employees is fewer than 250 on or before 28 February 2020. Employees do not have to provide a doctor’s fit note for their employer to make a claim under the scheme.

Employers can furlough their employees who have been advised to shield in line with public health guidance and are unable to work from home, under the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme. Once furloughed, the employee should no longer receive SSP and would be classified as a furloughed employee. Where an employee has been notified to shield and has not been furloughed, the rebate will compensate up to 2 weeks of SSP from 16 April 2020.

If you need assistance with a claim please contact us.

ADDITIONAL £40M FOR CUTTING-EDGE START-UPS

Innovative businesses and start-ups are set to benefit from a £40 million government investment to drive forward new technological advances. The government is doubling investment in the Fast Start Competition with an additional £20 million. The competition aims to fast-track the development of innovations borne out of the coronavirus crisis while supporting the UK’s next generation of cutting-edge start-ups – helping to build the businesses of tomorrow and propel their future prosperity.

Among the successful projects to receive the funding to date, is a virtual-reality surgical training simulator and an online farmers’ market platform.

  • £40 million of government funding to support the UK’s next generation of innovative businesses
  • projects to benefit from the funding include virtual reality training platforms for surgeons, virtual farmers’ markets and other innovations borne out of the coronavirus pandemic
  • funding comes from a £211 million government investment package to encourage businesses developing new technologies

The Fast Start Competition was launched in April in response to the outbreak and is being managed by Innovate UK

See:  https://www.gov.uk/government/organisations/innovate-uk

APPRENTICESHIP PROGRAMME RESPONSE

Guidance for apprentices, employers, training providers and assessment organisations in response to the impact of coronavirus (COVID-19).

See: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/coronavirus-covid-19-apprenticeship-programme-response?utm_source=df7cee49-94a8-491e-bb5d-1ff1066c2886&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=govuk-notifications&utm_content=immediate

The Government sates this is a difficult time for apprentices, employers and providers of apprenticeship training, assessment and external assurance. The government is committed to supporting apprentices, and employers continue to build the skills capabilities the country needs now and in the future.

The Education and Skills Funding Agency (ESFA) is responding by taking steps to ensure that, wherever possible, apprentices can continue and complete their apprenticeship, despite any break they need to take as a result of coronavirus (COVID-19), and to support providers during this challenging time.

The support they are providing includes:

  • supporting employers, providers, and apprentices to work together to mutually agree where and how this training takes place. This includes in the workplace where a provider is able to do so safely and where that workplace meets new ‘coronavirus secure’ guidelines on ensuring the workplace is safe
  • confirming flexibilities to allow furloughed apprentices to continue their training and to take their end-point assessment, and to allow existing furloughed employees to start a new apprenticeship, as long as it does not provide services to or generate revenue for their employer
  • encouraging training providers to deliver training to apprentices remotely, and via e-learning, as far as is practicable
  • allowing the modification of end-point assessment arrangements, including remote assessments wherever practicable and possible – this is in order to support employers, providers and end-point assessment organisation (EPAOs) to maintain progress and achievement for apprentices
  • clarifying that apprentices ready for assessment, but who cannot be assessed due to coronavirus issues, can have their end-point assessment rescheduled
  • apprentices whose gateway is delayed can have an extension to the assessment time frame
  • enabling employers and training providers to report and initiate a break in learning, where the interruption to learning due to coronavirus is greater than 4 weeks
  • confirming that, where apprentices are made redundant, it is the ambition to find them alternative employment and continue their apprenticeship as quickly as possible and within 12 weeks
  • confirming that where apprentices are made redundant and are ready to go through gateway, that providers and EPAOs are able to make the necessary assessment arrangements to support these apprentices
  • confirming that they are extending the transition period onto the apprenticeship service. Funds available for new starts on non-levy procured contracts can now be used until 31 March 2021. All starts will be through the apprenticeship service from 1 April 2021

The Government are keeping the developing situation, and guidance, under review and will continue updating this guidance as new information is available and/or the situation evolves.

The information should be read alongside the government’s COVID-19 guidance and support for businesses, in particular the salary support for furloughed employees, which also applies to apprentices.

They have also broken down some of this guidance into articles for employers, training providers and EPAOs, as well as articles for apprentices. These can be found on the Apprenticeship Service Help page.

Employers, training providers and EPAOs: https://help.apprenticeships.education.gov.uk/hc/en-gb

Apprentices:  https://help.apprenticeships.education.gov.uk/hc/en-gb/sections/360003798540-Apprentice

Read guidance from the Institute for Apprenticeships and Technical Education (IFATE) on the delivery of assessment here: https://www.instituteforapprenticeships.org/response-to-covid-19/

WALES – ADDITIONAL £64.5M AS A RESULT OF TRANSPORT FUNDING IN ENGLAND

Wales will receive an additional £64.5 million as a result of UK Government funding allocated to Transport for London earlier this week.

See: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/wales-to-receive-additional-645m-as-a-result-of-transport-funding-in-england?utm_source=eb514740-52ba-4f2c-a891-ed1e1f80041c&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=govuk-notifications&utm_content=immediate

NORTHERN IRELAND – ENTERPRISE RELIEF FUND FOR YOUNG ENTREPRENEURS

This Initiative offers self-employed young people affected by the coronavirus outbreak flexible access to grants and business support.

The Prince’s Trust and Ulster Bank recently launched a £5 million fund supporting young entrepreneurs across the UK to keep their businesses afloat during the coronavirus crisis.

The Prince’s Trust and NatWest Enterprise Relief Fund are offering grants to 18 to 30-year olds across the UK who are self-employed or running their own business.

In conjunction with cash grants, the initiative will offer one-to-one support and guidance to anyone who needs it and who may be worried about their future.

Use for the Grants:

Grants can be used to maintain core business operations during the crisis, as well as meet any existing financial commitments, such as paying for essential equipment or settling invoices from suppliers.

Additionally, grants will also support young people to diversify their business to respond to opportunities created by the crisis.

Who is eligible?

To be able to apply for the Enterprise Relief Fund, you must be a business owner aged 18 to 30, who created their business in the last four years and do not have any other source of income during the crisis.

See: https://www.nibusinessinfo.co.uk/content/coronavirus-enterprise-relief-fund-young-entrepreneurs

 

Gov.Uk Updates Guidance On Which Employees You Can Put On Furlough To Use The Corona Job Retention Scheme

Written 15 May 2020

Find out which employees you can put on furlough and claim for through the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/check-which-employees-you-can-put-on-furlough-to-use-the-coronavirus-job-retention-scheme

This is a summary of information on the Government website.

Employees you can claim for

You can only claim for furloughed employees that were employed on 19 March 2020 and who were on your PAYE payroll on or before 19 March 2020. This means a Real Time Information (RTI) submission notifying payment in respect of that employee to HMRC must have been made on or before 19 March 2020. If you had employees that were employed on 28 February 2020 but not on 19 March 2020, please see the section below on employees who were made redundant or stopped working for you after 28 February 2020.

Was the employee employed with you as of this date? Date RTI submission notifying payment was made to HMRC Eligible for CJRS?
28 February 2020 On or before 28 February 2020 Yes
28 February 2020 On or before 19 March 2020 Yes
28 February 2020 On or after 20 March 2020 No
19 March 2020 On or before 19 March 2020 Yes
19 March 2020 On or after 20 March 2020 No
On or after 20 March 2020 On or after 20 March 2020 No

If you made employees redundant or they stopped working for you after 28 February

If you made employees redundant, or they stopped working for you on or after 28 February 2020, you can re-employ them, put them on furlough and claim for their wages from the date on which you furloughed them, even if you do not re-employ them until after 19 March 2020.

This applies as long as the employee was on your PAYE payroll as at 28 February 2020, which means an RTI submission notifying payment in respect of that employee to HMRC must have been made on or before 28 February 2020. If your employee stopped working for you and was on a fixed term contract, you should also refer to the section ‘If your employee is on a fixed term contract’ below.

If you made employees redundant or they stopped working for you after 19 March 2020

If you made employees redundant, or they stopped working for you on or after 19 March 2020, you can re-employ them, put them on furlough and claim for their wages through the scheme from the date on which you furloughed them.

This applies as long as the employee was employed on 19 March 2020 and was on your PAYE payroll on or before 19 March 2020. This means an RTI submission notifying payment in respect of that employee to HMRC must have been made on or before 19 March 2020. If your employee stopped working for you and was on a fixed term contract, you should also refer to the section ‘If your employee is on a fixed term contract’ below.

If your employee is on a fixed term contract

An employee on a fixed term contract can be re-employed, furloughed, and claimed for if either:

  • their contract expired after 28 February 2020 and an RTI payment submission for the employee was notified to HMRC on or before 28 February 2020
  • their contract expired after 19 March 2020 and an RTI payment submission for the employee was notified to HMRC on or before 19 March 2020

If the employee’s fixed term contract has not already expired, it can be extended, or renewed. You can claim for them if an RTI payment submission for the employee was notified to HMRC on or before 19 March 2020.

Employees that started and ended the same contract between 28 February 2020 and 19 March 2020 will not qualify for this scheme. This is not specific to employees on fixed-term contracts, the same would apply to employees on all other contracts.

If your employee had multiple employers over the last year

If an employee has had multiple employers over the past year, has only worked for one of them at any one time, and is being furloughed by their current employer, their former employer/s should not re-employ them, put them on furlough and claim for their wages through the scheme.

If your employees are working reduced hours

If an employee is working, but on reduced hours, or for reduced pay, they will not be eligible for this scheme.

If your employee has more than one job

If your employee has more than one employer they can be furloughed for each job. Each job is separate, and the cap applies to each employer individually.

Employees can be furloughed in one job and receive a furloughed payment but continue working for another employer and receive their normal wages.

If you employ apprentices

Apprentices can be furloughed in the same way as other employees and they can continue to train whist furloughed.

However, you must pay your Apprentices at least the Apprenticeship Minimum Wage/National Living Wage/National Minimum Wage (AMW/NLW/NMW) as appropriate for all the time they spend training. This means you must cover any shortfall between the amount you can claim for their wages through this scheme and their appropriate minimum wage.

Guidance is available for changes in apprenticeship learning arrangements because of coronavirus (COVID-19) in:

 If your employee does volunteer work

 A furloughed employee can take part in volunteer work, if it does not provide services to or generate revenue for, or on behalf of your organisation or a linked or associated organisation.

You cannot furlough your employee and then ask them to volunteer for you in the same or a different role.

If your employee does training

Furloughed employees can engage in training, as long as in undertaking the training the employee does not provide services to, or generate revenue for, or on behalf of their organisation or a linked or associated organisation. Furloughed employees should be encouraged to undertake training.

Where training is undertaken by furloughed employees, at the request of their employer, they are entitled to be paid at least their appropriate national minimum wage for this time. In most cases, the furlough payment of 80% of an employee’s regular wage, up to the value of £2,500, will provide sufficient monies to cover these training hours. However, where the time spent training attracts a minimum wage entitlement in excess of the furlough payment, employers will need to pay the additional wages (see National Minimum Wage Section for more details).

Furloughed employees working as union or non-union representatives

Whilst on furlough, employees who are union or non-union representatives may undertake duties and activities for the purpose of individual or collective representation of employees or other workers. However, in doing this, they must not provide services to or generate revenue for, or on behalf of your organisation or a linked or associated organisation.

If your employee’s health has been affected by coronavirus
(COVID-19)

If your employee is shielding

Employees who are unable to work because they are shielding in line with public health guidance (or need to stay home with someone who is shielding) can be furloughed.

If your employee has caring responsibilities

Employees who are unable to work because they have caring responsibilities resulting from coronavirus (COVID-19) can be furloughed. For example, employees that need to look after children can be furloughed.

If your employee becomes sick while furloughed

Furloughed employee retain their statutory rights, including their right to Statutory Sick Pay. This means that furloughed employees who become ill must be paid at least Statutory Sick Pay. It is up to employers to decide whether to move these employees onto Statutory Sick Pay or to keep them on furlough, at their furloughed rate.

If a furloughed employee who becomes sick is moved onto SSP, employers can no longer claim for the furloughed salary. Employers are required to pay SSP themselves, although may qualify for a rebate for up to 2 weeks of SSP. If employers keep the sick furloughed employee on the furloughed rate, they remain eligible to claim for these costs through the furloughed scheme.

If your employee is on leave

If your employee is on unpaid leave

If an employee started unpaid leave after 28 February 2020, you can put them on furlough instead. If you put them on furlough then you should pay them at least 80% of their regular wages, up to the monthly cap of £2500.

If an employee went on unpaid leave on or before 28 February, you cannot furlough them until the date on which it was agreed they would return from unpaid leave.

If your employee is self-isolating or on sick leave

If your employee is on sick leave or self-isolating as a result of Coronavirus, they will be able to get Statutory Sick Pay, subject to other eligibility conditions applying. The Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme is not intended for short-term absences from work due to sickness, and there is a 3-week minimum furlough period.

Short term illness/self-isolation should not be a consideration in deciding whether to furlough an employee. If, however, employers want to furlough employees for business reasons and they are currently off sick, they are eligible to do so, as with other employees. In these cases, the employee should no longer receive sick pay and would be classified as a furloughed employee.

Employers are also entitled to furlough employees who are being shielded or off on long-term sick leave. It is up to employers to decide whether to furlough these employees. You can claim back from both the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme and the SSP rebate scheme for the same employee but not for the same period of time. When an employee is on furlough, you can only reclaim expenditure through the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme, and not the SSP rebate scheme. If a non-furloughed employee becomes ill, needs to self-isolate or be shielded, then you might qualify for the SSP rebate scheme, enabling you to claim up to two weeks of SSP per employee.

If your employee is on maternity leave, adoption leave, paternity leave, shared parental leave or parental bereavement leave

The normal rules for maternity and other forms of parental leave and pay apply.

Although, you may need to calculate your employee’s average weekly earnings differently, if your employee was furloughed and then started leave on or after 25 April 2020 for:

  • maternity pay
  • adoption pay
  • paternity pay
  • shared parental pay
  • parental bereavement pay

You can claim through the scheme for enhanced (earnings related) contractual pay for employees who qualify for either:

  • maternity pay
  • adoption pay
  • paternity pay
  • shared parental pay
  • parental bereavement pay

If your employee gets Maternity Allowance

If your employee is getting Maternity Allowance while they are on maternity leave, they should not get furlough pay at the same time.

If your employee has agreed to be put on furlough, tell them to contact Jobcentre Plus to stop their Maternity Allowance payments.

If your employee agrees to be put on furlough and end their maternity leave early, they will need to give you at least 8 weeks’ notice and they will not be eligible for furlough pay until the end of the 8 weeks.

Individuals you can claim for who are not employees

As well as employees, the grant can be claimed for any of the following groups, if they are paid via PAYE: office holders (including company directors), salaried members of Limited Liability Partnerships (LLPs), agency workers (including those employed by umbrella companies), and limb (b) workers.

The guidance below sets out specific considerations for those individuals who are paid via PAYE, but who are not necessarily employees in employment law. Unless explicitly set out below, all other guidance is applicable to these cases, and should be followed.

Office holders

Office holders can be furloughed and receive support through this scheme. The furlough, and any ongoing payment during furlough, will need to be agreed between the office holder and the party who operates PAYE on the income they receive for holding their office. Where the office holder is a company director or member of a Limited Liability Partnership (LLP), the furlough arrangements should be adopted formally as a decision of the company or LLP.

Company directors

As office holders, salaried company directors are eligible to be furloughed and receive support through this scheme. Company directors owe duties to their company which are set out in the Companies Act 2006. Where a company (acting through its board of directors) considers that it is in compliance with the statutory duties of one or more of its individual salaried directors, the board can decide that such directors should be furloughed. Where one or more individual directors’ furlough is so decided by the board, this should be formally adopted as a decision of the company, noted in the company records, and communicated in writing to the director(s) concerned.

Where furloughed directors need to carry out particular duties to fulfil the statutory obligations they owe to their company, they may do so provided they do no more than would reasonably be judged necessary for that purpose, i.e. they should not do work of a kind they would carry out in normal circumstances to generate commercial revenue or provides services to or on behalf of their company.

This also applies to salaried individuals who are directors of their own personal service company (PSC).

Company directors with an annual pay period

Those paid annually are eligible to claim, as long as they meet the relevant conditions. This includes being notified to HMRC on an RTI submission on or before 19 March 2020, which relates to a payment of earnings in the 19/20 tax year. The requirement for there to be payment of earnings in the 19/20 tax year applies for any employee being claimed for under the scheme, irrespective of how frequently they are paid (e.g. weekly, fortnightly, or monthly). This will be relevant for those on an annual pay period if the last payment notified to RTI was before 5 April 2019 and no further payments were notified until after 19 March 2020.

An employer can make their claim in anticipation of an imminent payroll run, at the point they run their payroll or after they have run their payroll.

Salaried members of Limited Liability Partnerships (LLPs)

Members of LLPs who are designated as employees for tax purposes (‘salaried members’) under the Income Tax (Trading and Other Income) Act (ITTOIA) 2005 are eligible to be furloughed and receive support through this scheme.

The rights and duties of a member of an LLP are set out in an LLP agreement and in the absence of an agreement, default provisions in the LLP Act 2000, based upon company and partnership law. Such an agreement may include separate agreement between the LLP and an individual member setting out the terms applicable to that member’s relationship with the LLP.

To furlough a member, the terms of the LLP agreement (or any such agreement between the LLP and the member) may need to be varied by a formal decision of the LLP, for example to reflect the fact that the member will perform no work in the LLP for the period of furlough, and the effect of this on their remuneration from the LLP. For an LLP member who is treated as being employed by the LLP (in accordance with s863A of ITTOIA 2005), the reference salary for this scheme is the LLP member’s profit allocation, excluding any amounts which are determined by the LLP member’s performance, or the overall performance of the LLP.

Agency Workers (including those employed by umbrella companies)

Where agency workers are paid through PAYE, they are eligible to be furloughed and receive support through this scheme, including where they are employed by umbrella companies.

Furlough should be agreed between the agency, as the deemed employer, and the worker, though it would be advised to discuss the need to furlough with any end clients involved. As with employees, agency workers should perform no work for, through or on behalf of the agency that has furloughed them while they are furloughed, including performing such work through or on behalf of the agency for the agency’s clients.

Where an agency supplies clients with workers who are employed by an umbrella company that operates the PAYE, it will be for the umbrella company and the worker to agree whether to furlough the worker or not.

Limb (b) Workers

Where Limb (b) Workers are paid through PAYE, they can be furloughed and receive support through this scheme.

Those who pay tax on their trading profits through Income Tax Self-Assessment, may instead be eligible for the Self-Employed Income Support Scheme (SEISS), announced by the Chancellor on 26 March 2020.

Contingent workers in the public sector

The Cabinet Office has issued guidance on how payments to suppliers of contingent workers impacted by COVID-19 should be dealt with where the party receiving the contingent worker’s services is a Central Government Department, an Executive Agency of a Central Government Department or a Non-Departmental Public Body.

Read more information on contingent workers impacted by COVID-19. This guidance applies to agency workers paid through PAYE, as well as those paid through umbrella companies on PAYE and off-payroll workers supplying their services through a Personal Service Company (PSC).

Contractors with public sector engagements in scope of IR35 off-payroll working rules (IR35)

Public sector bodies will follow the Crown Commercial Services guidance in the vast majority of cases. In a small number of cases, for example where organisations are not primarily funded by the government and whose staff cannot be redeployed to assist with the coronavirus response, it may be appropriate to claim under the CJRS. Contractors who are deemed employees according to the off payroll working rules might be eligible for this scheme.

In this scenario, if the public sector organisation wished to furlough a contractor, they would have to confirm this with both the contractor’s Personal Service Company (PSC) and the fee-payer (as set out in the off-payroll working rules, usually the agency paying the contractor’s PSC). It should be formally agreed between these parties that the contractor is to do no work for the public sector organisation during their period of furlough. The fee-payer would be able to apply for the furlough payment of 80% of the monthly contract value, up to a maximum of £2,500, as well as the employer NICs on that subsidised wage. The fee-payer would then pay at least the amount of wage-grant received to the PSC and report the payment via PAYE using the contractor’s details, making the usual tax and National Insurance contributions (NICs) deductions for contracts in scope of the off-payroll rules. The PSC would then be required to report the amount it pays to the contractor as deemed employment income via PAYE using box 58A on the PAYE Real Time Information return.

Where a contractor is continuing to receive payments from a public sector client (including through the CJRS or other any other scheme), income from this client should be excluded from any calculation of the reference pay for the purposes of the CJRS if the contractor also decides to furlough themselves as an employee or director of their own company.

If you’ve consolidated your payroll and have new employees on it

Where a group of companies have multiple PAYE schemes and there is a transfer of all employees from these schemes into a new consolidated PAYE scheme after 28 February 2020, the new scheme will be eligible to furlough those employees and claim the grants available under the CJRS.

Employee transfers under TUPE and on a change in ownership

A new employer is eligible to claim under the CJRS in respect of the employees of a previous business transferred after 28 February 2020 if either the TUPE or PAYE business succession rules apply to the change in ownership.

After you have checked which employees you can claim for

Once you know whether you can put your employees on furlough and claim through the scheme for their wages, you should agree this with them before you start your claim.