HOW TO TAKE ADVANTAGE OF GOVERNMENT GRANTS FOR SMES

Government has recently announced the relief packages consist of different schemes to support SMEs as a result of Covid-19 which breakdown is provided as follows. 

We are awaiting details from HMRC and soon the new mechanism is developed for Job retention and SSP schemes, we will let you know soon of how we can get advantage of it. 


1) Support for businesses through the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme

Under the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme, all UK employers will be able to access support to continue paying part of their employees’ salary for those employees that would otherwise have been laid off during this crisis.

Eligibility – All UK businesses are eligible.

How to access the scheme – You will need to designate affected employees as ‘furloughed workers,’ and notify your employees of this change – changing the status of employees remains subject to existing employment law and, depending on the employment contract, may be subject to negotiation. We will submit information to HMRC about the employees that have been furloughed and their earnings through a new online portal – this will be introduced soon by HMRC and we will apply retrospectively soon the portal is up and running. HMRC will reimburse 80% of furloughed workers wage costs, up to a cap of £2,500 per month.

2) Support for businesses who are paying sick pay to employees

HMRC will bring forward legislation to allow small-and medium-sized businesses and employers to reclaim Statutory Sick Pay (SSP) paid for sickness absence due to COVID-19. The eligibility criteria for the scheme will be as follows:

* this refund will cover up to 2 weeks’ SSP per eligible employee who has been off work because of COVID-19

* employers will be able to reclaim expenditure for any employee who has claimed SSP (according to the new eligibility criteria) as a result of COVID-19

* employers should maintain records of staff absences and payments of SSP, but employees will not need to provide a GP fit note. If evidence is required by an employer, those with symptoms of coronavirus can get an isolation note from NHS 111 online and those who live with someone that has symptoms can get a note from the NHS website

 https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/self-isolation-advice

* eligible period for the scheme will commence the day after the regulations on the extension of SSP to those staying at home comes into force

* the government will work with employers over the coming months to set up the repayment mechanism for employers as soon as possible

3) Business rates holiday for retail, hospitality and leisure businesses

Business rates holiday for retail, hospitality and leisure businesses in England for the 2020 to 2021 tax year. Businesses that received the retail discount in the 2019 to 2020 tax year will be rebilled by their local authority as soon as possible.

Eligibility

You are eligible for the business rates holiday if:

* your business is based in England

* your business is in the retail, hospitality and/or leisure sector

Properties that will benefit from the relief will be occupied hereditaments that are wholly or mainly being used:

* as shops, restaurants, cafes, drinking establishments, cinemas and live music venues

* for assembly and leisure

* as hotels, guest & boarding premises and self-catering accommodation

4) Cash grants for retail, hospitality and leisure businesses

The Retail and Hospitality Grant Scheme provides businesses in the retail, hospitality and leisure sectors with a cash grant of up to £25,000 per property. For businesses in these sectors with a rateable value of under £15,000, they will receive a grant of £10,000. For businesses in these sectors with a rateable value of between £15,001 and £51,000, they will receive a grant of £25,000. You can check the valuation of your property on the following link https://www.gov.uk/correct-your-business-rates and based on that you can apply for the grant.

Eligibility – You are eligible for the grant if:

* your business is based in England

* your business is in the retail, hospitality and/or leisure sector

Properties that will benefit from the relief will be occupied hereditaments that are wholly or mainly being used:

* as shops, restaurants, cafes, drinking establishments, cinemas and live music venues

* for assembly and leisure

* as hotels, guest and boarding premises and self-catering accommodation

How to access the scheme – You do not need to do anything. Your local authority will write to you if you are eligible for this grant. Guidance for local authorities on the scheme will be provided shortly. Any enquiries on eligibility for, or provision of, the reliefs and grants should be directed to the relevant local authority. https://www.gov.uk/find-local-council

5) Support for businesses that pay little or no business rates

The government will provide additional Small Business Grant Scheme funding for local authorities to support small businesses that already pay little or no business rates because of small business rate relief (SBBR), rural rate relief (RRR) and tapered relief. This will provide a one-off grant of £10,000 to eligible businesses to help meet their ongoing business costs.

Eligibility

You are eligible if:

* your business is based in England

* you are a small business and already receive SBBR and/or RRR

* you are a business that occupies property

How to access the scheme – You do not need to do anything. Your local authority will write to you if you are eligible for this grant. Guidance for local authorities on the scheme will be provided shortly. Any enquiries on eligibility for, or provision of, the reliefs and grants should be directed to the relevant local authority. https://www.gov.uk/find-local-council

6) Support for businesses through the Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme

The new Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme supports SMEs with access to working capital (including loans, overdrafts, invoice finance and asset finance) of up to £5 million in value and for up to 6 years. The government will pay to cover the first 12 months of interest payments and any lender-levied fees, so smaller businesses will not face any upfront costs and will benefit from lower initial repayments. The government will provide lenders with a guarantee of 80% on each loan (subject to a per-lender cap on claims) to give lenders further confidence in continuing to provide finance to SMEs.

This scheme is being delivered through commercial lenders, backed by the British Business Bank.

Eligibility- You are eligible for the scheme if:

* your business is UK based, with turnover of no more than £45 million per year

* your business meets the other British Business Bank eligibility criteria

How to access the scheme- The scheme is now open for applications. To apply, you should talk to your bank or one of the 40 accredited finance providers (not the British Business Bank) as soon as possible, to discuss your business plan. You can find out the latest on the best ways to contact them via their websites. All major banks are offering this scheme. If you have an existing loan with monthly repayments you may want to ask for a repayment holiday to help with cash flow. The full rules of the scheme and the list of accredited lenders are available on the following link //www.british-business-bank.co.uk/ourpartners/coronavirus-business-interruption-loan-scheme-cbils/accredited-lenders/ 

It is possibility that some of the above schemes may not apply on your businesses. Please let us know if you need any further help to understand how to apply for one of the above schemes.

You can contact our specialist tax advisor at MJ Support & Co to look into your business affairs and assess if you can apply for the government grant and any other cash grant available for different sectors. Our tax advisors and accountants are well versed in property, construction, hospitality and retail sectors and helped several in personal tax planning as well as financial planning.

Why you choose us!

Support In Government Grants And Relief Packages – We will assess if you can apply for the government grant and get any cash benefit of any of the schemes provided on this page. 

Tax Planning – To ensuring meeting all deadlines, we won’t leave it until last minute, when it is too late!

No Penalty Guarantee – We offer systemised accounting and tax advice to enable our clients to meet with HMRC regulations.

Regular Compliance Checks – Offering regular compliance check to meet with the compliance requirements of small businesses and individual landlords.

No Surprise Bills – Call or email your Property Tax Accountant at any time and you won’t get billed for it.

We Make Your Life Easy – Life is beautiful, so when it comes to your tax affairs, we keep things simple and take away the hassle for you.

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