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Coronavirus Financial Assistance – Daily Update – 18.3.2020

Coronavirus Financial Assistance – Daily Update – 18.3.2020

We are continually monitoring all information available regarding Coronavirus (Covid-19) and as you will all be aware the Prime Minister, Boris Johnson, is now making daily statements during this ever changing pandemic. Therefore, we are now releasing these daily information blogs detailing the financial information which has been announced by the government. We may not have all the answers yet, but if you have any questions on the points below, please contact the firm and we will do all we can to help you.

Statutory sick pay (SSP) relief package for SMEs:

  • SSP is payable from day 1 instead of day 4, for those affected by Coronavirus; and
  • The government currently plan to set up some method of allowing employers to claim a repayment for the extra SSP being claimed and details on how to make a claim are still to be released.

Rates reliefs for businesses in Scotland & England have been proposed (however, this guidance isn’t 100% clear as to what’s available in Scotland and what’s available in England and we’ll provide additional detail and confirmation when available). At this stage, it appears that the following will be available from 1 April 2020:

  • In Scotland:
    • Grant funding of £10,000 for all businesses in receipt of small business rates relief or rural rates relief;
    • A 75% rates relief for retail, hospitality and leisure sectors with a rateable value of less than £69,000;
    • A fixed rates relief of up to £5,000 for all pubs with a rateable value of between £69,000 and £100,000; and
    • 1.6% rates relief for Scottish properties, reversing planned inflationary increases.
  • In England:
    • Grant funding of £10,000 for all businesses in receipt of small business rates relief or rural rates relief; and
    • A 12-month business rates holiday for all retail, hospitality and leisure businesses.

Grant funding proposals are as follows (again, the information available isn’t entirely clear as to what’s available in Scotland and what’s available in England,  but our current understanding is that these are available in both Scotland & England):

  • As noted above, grant funding of up to £10,000 is to be made available for all businesses in receipt of small business rates relief or rural rates relief (additional information will follow, but current guidance states that these grants will be given automatically without application).
  • Grant funding of up to £25,000 for retail, hospitality and leisure businesses with property with a rateable value between £15,000 and £51,000 (please contact your local authority directly for additional information in this regard).

The Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme has been proposed to support long-term viable businesses who may need additional finance to ease cash-flow pressures:

  • The scheme will support loans totalling £1.2bn;
  • Individual loans of up to £5m per business will be supported;
  • Loans will be interest-free for the first 6-months and with reduced costs compared to other loans;
  • The funding is to be provided by regular British lenders (e.g. Barclays & RBS);
  • The Government will provide a guarantee of up to 80% for each loan, which is to provide the Lenders with the confidence they need to provide the funding;
  • The borrower is still liable for 100% of the debt (in simple terms, the guarantee will fall in place if the borrower fails); and
  • Further information on how to apply for these loans is to be released in the next few weeks, but you should consider contacting your bank early to make them aware of your potential requirements.

The HMRC Time To Pay Scheme is available to all businesses, who can contact HMRC directly to agree arrangements for any due tax liabilities.

If this is a concern, you should:

  • Contact HMRC on 0800 0159 559;
  • Have a note of any outstanding or impending tax liabilities;
  • Have a note of your relevant tax references to hand (e.g. UTR, VAT or PAYE references); and
  • Prepare a summary of your financial circumstances to substantiate why you need Time to Pay.

Please contact the office on 01573 225082 or email mail@dhco.co.uk for further information or guidance about the points above.



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