23 OCTOBER 2020
With businesses and individuals getting their head round more localised lockdowns (with rescue packages being negotiated region by region) and the three-tiered system, the landscape is moving as fast as ever and the government has duly responded.
In recognition of the challenging times ahead, the Chancellor announced on 22 October that he would be increasing support through the existing Job Support and Self-employed schemes, and expanding business grants to support companies in high-alert level areas. In Rishi Sunak’s own words, even businesses not forced to shut were facing ‘profound economic uncertainty’. So this is welcome news. In summary, what’s the latest?
- The Job Support Scheme (JSS) announced in September which was due to start from 1 November, has just been made more generous. Firstly employees are now only required to work 20% of their normal hours (previously (previously 33%). Of the hours not worked, the employer must pay the employee at least 5% of their usual wage (previously 33%) and the government will contribute 61.67% (previously 33%), up to a cap of £1,541.75 per employee per month
There’s a useful factsheet now available HERE.
- For the self-employed, further SEISS grants will be made available and the scheme has also been made more generous. The grant will now cover 40% of average monthly profits up to £3,750 for the period Nov-Jan with a further grant to follow covering February to April. More cash grants, to be distributed by Local Authorities, have also been announced. Up to £2,100 per month (based on the rateable value of properties) will be available for businesses in the hospitality, accommodation and leisure sector who are impacted by restrictions in high-alert level areas.
- These grants are on top of the other grants previously announced where businesses required to close for at least 3 weeks from 9 September due to local restrictions, would be eligible for grants of £1,000 or £1,500 per 3-week period of closure. This scheme is now being made more generous. Businesses should be able to receive up to £3,000 per month and will be eligible for payment after 2 weeks of closure. More details can be read HERE.
- Over 1m businesses will get flexibilities to help pay back loans. “Pay as You Grow” is available for Bounceback Loans with terms extended for up to 10 years. Interest only payments are also now available, as well as a suspension of payments altogether for 6 months.
- The deadline for applying for the Coronavirus Business Interruption loan scheme is extended to 30 Nov with terms being extended to 10 years (initially 6). Rishi hinted that a new loan plan will be announced from 1 Jan.
- VAT liabilities that were deferred up to 31 Mar can now be spread over 11 instalments over 2021-22, with 0% interest.
- The 15% reduction on VAT rates for the hospitality sector has been extended until 31 Mar.
- Greater flexibility has been given for Self-Assessment (SA) tax that was deferred up to 31 Jan 2021. Taxpayers with up to £30,000 of SA liabilities due will be able to use HMRC’s self-service Time to Pay facility to secure a plan to pay over an additional 12 months, to 31 Jan 2022. Any taxpayer not able to pay their tax bill on time, including those who cannot use the online service, can continue to use HMRC’s Time to Pay SA helpline to agree a payment plan.
You can read more on today’s announcements HERE
With businesses and individuals having to consider so many elements, we are committed to bringing you a variety of virtual events and super relevant articles to help inform your decision-making. The next few weeks are no exception. Here are the latest highlights:
- The needs of all businesses are fast-changing. For the Founders, CFOs and Boards of Early Stage, Scale-Up and High Growth businesses this has never been truer. That’s why we’ve created CP FUTURES. Our specialists will support these firms with their growth agenda, navigating finance, strategy, technology and culture. You can get the full picture HERE
- Towards the end of November, brace yourself for Rebelution 2. To celebrate Entrepreneurs’ Week, we’ve assembled a stellar line up including GymShark, Propercorn, James & James, Trunki and Snaffling Pig. 5 Days of explosive content – November 16-20. Just for you. Make sure you don’t miss a thing HERE
- Let’s face it, we all need a good laugh. And exercise too. So, we’ve brought together the best of both these worlds for a ‘Laughtercise’ Zoom session on Tuesday 27th October 9.30-10.15. Perfect for all the family, this will add some welcome cheer. Book your place HERE. There are two highly relevant articles on R&D. The first is titled ‘Let’s stop calling it R&D v2.020’ and offers a brilliant insight into what R&D tax relief is available if you know where to look. Read more HERE. The other, by our R&D Incentives Partner, Chris Knott, clarifies how furlough payments/periods of furlough will affect R&D claims. Catch it HERE.
- The FRC recently introduced a raft of major changes to audits. We have a great summary article: New Audit ethical standard; shape up for the shake up. You can read it HERE.
- And on 5thNovember our R&D Incentives Team will be hosting an online session talking about “Cash through COVID and the future of R&D claims. For more info and to sign up click HERE.
So, in a sense of déjà vu, businesses and individuals need to adjust to new schemes and timelines. As more details are revealed, our team of specialists will address any questions you may have. Simply get in touch.