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Chancellor announces support package for the self-employed

Article Posted - 26th March 2020

The Chancellor, Rishi Sunak, has announced that the Government will provide grants of up to £2,500 per month for self-employed workers whose income has been affected by the impact of the coronavirus outbreak.

The grants will cover up to 80 percent of average monthly profits over the last three years, for at least three months.

Individuals will need to apply for the grant, which will be paid in a lump sum. The Chancellor said the grants would be paid from the beginning of June at the earliest, covering the three months to May.

The scheme will be open to those with a trading profit of less than £50,000 in 2018-19 or an average trading profit of less than £50,000 from 2016-17, 2017-18 and 2018-19. To qualify, more than half of their income in these periods must come from self-employment.

Anyone with more urgent needs would need to apply for Universal Credit or for business interruption loans.

How will self-employed status be identified?

Self-employed status will primarily be evidenced through tax returns. HMRC will contact individuals directly to invite applications.

Those who pay themselves a salary and dividends through their own company are not covered by the scheme but will be covered for their salary by the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme if they are operating PAYE schemes.

We will publish further details when they become available in our coronavirus guidance for landlords on financial support. The full suite of guidance is available here.  

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