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Self-employment Income Support Scheme – Treasury Direction published

On the 4th May, the Treasury published its Direction to HMRC giving legal footing to the Self-Employed Income Support Scheme (“SEISS”)

Full details of the updated guidance allowing individuals to check if they can claim a grant through the scheme and the Treasury Direction can be found following the links. 

A summary of the key elements include:

  • a claim may only be made in relation to a trade, the business of which has been adversely affected by coronavirus or coronavirus disease (para 4.2(a)).  Examples are included in the guidance which include if someone is unable to work because they are shielding or if trading has had to stop or down scale due to fewer or no customers.
  • the claimant only needs to have completed a tax return in one of three relevant years (it is no longer confined to completing a tax return for 2018/19), albeit they need to have traded in 2018/19, 2019/20 and intend to trade in 2020/21.  They need to have had an income (profit before tax) of under £50,000pa.  For details on how HMRC will work out your eligibility, click here. 
  • If eligible, the SEISS entitles you to claim a taxable grant of 80 per cent of your average monthly trading profits. This will be paid out in a single instalment covering three months (though it is not clear which months), and will be capped at £7,500 in total. The grant will be based on your average trading profits over the three tax years ending in 2018 –19.
  • Universal credit can still be claimed while you wait for the grant.  You can also continue to work, start a new trade or take on other employment.

How to claim:

HMRC has produced an online eligibility tool  which you can use to find out if you are eligible to make a claim. In order to use the online tool, you will need:

  • a self-assessment unique taxpayer reference,
  • national insurance number,
  • Government gateway user ID and password,
  • bank account number and sort code

The online service to submit your claim will be available from 13 May 2020.  If you are eligible, HMRC will inform you of the date you can make your claim from.  Once approved, payment should be received within 6 working days.

These are extremely stressful and worrying times we are living through at the moment and we hope you find our updates useful.  Our specialist employment solicitor, Lisa Aitken is on hand to answer any questions you may have regarding your employment rights and government schemes.  For free initial advice, contact Lisa on 07960 469988 or email:


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