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As Covid-19 continues to grip the country more people are looking for reassurance around what support there is for business.

While we featured this in a blog early last week, there were further announcements at the end of the week.

There were also a lot of questions from business owners about what the announcements actually meant.

Accountancy firms and tax advisers will be advised at some point soon but until then we can only highlight the measures that matter to most businesses.

Covid-19 support so far

This list of measures looks at the announcements that were either new or updated late last week:

  • A coronavirus Job Retention Scheme
  • Deferring VAT and Income Tax payments
  • A Statutory Sick Pay relief package for SMEs
  • A 12-month business rates holiday for all retail, hospitality, leisure and nursery businesses in England
  • Small business grant funding of £10,000 for all business in receipt of small business rate relief or rural rate relief
  • Grant funding of £25,000 for retail, hospitality and leisure businesses with property with a rateable value between £15,000 and £51,000
  • The Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme, offering loans of up to £5 million for SMEs through the British Business Bank
  • A new lending facility from the Bank of England to help support liquidity among larger firms, helping them bridge coronavirus disruption to their cash flows through loans
  • The HMRC Time To Pay Scheme

Here we look at some of those announcements to clarify some points.

The Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme

Looking at this, it appears that this is aimed at supporting up to 80% of the salary of somebody that would have otherwise been laid off as part of this crisis up to a maximum of £2,500 per month – these are classed by HMRC as ‘furloughed workers’.

It is not aimed at those staff who are still working and working from home.

There will be no doubt further measures to be introduced to reduce the risk of this support from being abused.

Small Business Grant Funding

The small business grant funding of £10,000 for all businesses is for those in receipt of small business rate relief or rural rate relief.

There has been conflicting advice given around this so far that whilst it seems to suggest that the eligibility is very broad, there are likely to be restrictions elsewhere.

Some of the media report that it ‘up to’ £10,000 and not every business will receive it. The truth is that while such measures are announced at press conferences, the finer details do not always come out until a week or two later.

At the moment, local councils, who will administer these scheme, are still being briefed by the government. Once that has been completed we will know more, but it is clear that there is not an application process. If you qualify, you will simply receive the grant.

However, we will keep you posted and advise that you wait until an official announcement is made about how this will be administered.

For more detailed guidance around any of the above please click here.

If you want to speak to us about your business, contact us now.