SELF-EMPLOYED workers who have been affected by coronavirus have just five days left to apply for the first set of government grants.
The deadline for Self-Employment Income Support Scheme applications falls on Monday, July 13.
The scheme is designed to help people who have lost work because of Covid-19, for instance because custom has dried up or because of shielding or care responsibilities.
The grant provides 80 per cent of three months’ profits up to a cap of £7,500 in total (or £2,500 per month).
The first grant, which is closing from July 13, covers lost profits from March, April and May.
A second grant has also been introduced to help self-employed workers that struggle in June, July and August.
Many self-employed people will qualify for both grants, if their business continue to be affected by coronavirus and lockdown.
But anyone who is already losing income must apply for the first grant quickly, before it closes for good.
Missing the deadline for the first grant will not disqualify you from the second, but it will mean you lose out on any help for troubles in the earlier part of the year.
To be eligible for the financial help, you need to have traded in the tax year 2019 to 2020 and intend to carry on trading.
You must also:
You’ll also need to show that your business has been adversely affected by coronavirus.
This could be because:
The government has provided examples of when you might be ‘adversely affected’.
You can’t claim the grant if you’re a limited company or operating a trade through a trust.
How much you’ll get will depend on how much your business made over the last three years.
The taxable grant is based on your average trading profit over the years:
HMRC will work out your average trading profit by adding together your total trading profits or losses for the three years and then dividing it by three.
The first grant will be worth 80 per cent of your average monthly trading profits, paid out in a single instalment covering all three months from March to May.
It will be capped at £7,500 in total.
The grant amount HMRC calculates will be paid directly into your bank account, in one instalment.
The payments you get will be taxable, so you will pay some of the money to the government as you would with your normal income.
The second grant will be similar to the first, but you’ll have to show that your profits were adversely affected after July 15.
You’ll be able to apply from August 17.
You won’t get quite as much money as in the first grant, as the government will only pay 70 per cent of your average profits.
The cap will also be reduced to £6,570 in total for the three months.
The government has confirmed that this second grant will be the final one it offers.
You can claim for the second grant even if you did not make a claim for the first.
Lots of self-employed workers have complained that have fallen through the gaps and won’t receive any government grants.
Here’s everything you need to know about the scheme’s second round including how to apply.
If you’re not eligible for the SEISS or furlough schemes, you can apply for help through Universal Credit.