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COVID-19: The Self-Employment Income Support Scheme (‘SEISS’): Second grant now available

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By Shanice Golder

In addressing the detrimental impact that the coronavirus pandemic has had on businesses, the first stage of the SEISS paid out £7.8 billion benefitting over 2.7 million people who were self-employed or in business partnerships. Applications for the first stage closed on 13th July 2020.

On 17th August 2020, the second stage of the scheme opened and is available to claim until 19th October 2020.

Is your business eligible for the second grant?

Those businesses who were eligible for the first stage of the scheme, and whose business has been adversely affected by coronavirus on or after 14th July 2020, will be eligible for the second grant. HMRC will contact eligible customers to advise them that they can claim.

You may be eligible for a grant under the second stage, even if you did not claim under the first stage.

In order to be eligible for a grant under the second stage, you must:

  • be self-employed or a member of a partnership prior to and since 6 April 2019

  • have traded in and since the 2018/19 tax year and submitted your self–assessment tax return for that year on or before 23rd April 2020

  • you intend to continue to trade in the 2020/21 tax year; and

  • your business has been adversely affected on or after 14th July 2020.

However, those with self-employed trading profits above £50,000 are not eligible, nor are sole directors of limited companies.

What does “adversely affected” mean?

There is no strict definition of “adversely affected”; it encompasses a business experiencing a lower income or being subject to increased costs as a result of the pandemic. This may be as a result of:

  • social distancing measures or staff taken ill meaning reduced staff

  • staff shielding or self-isolating

  • purchasing protective equipment

  • cancelled consumer/ supply contracts

  • less custom

There is no minimum threshold over which your business’ income or costs need to have changed.

How much is the second grant and is it repayable?

The amount available under the second grant is calculated at 70% of the businesses’ average monthly trading profits and is paid in a single instalment capped at a maximum of £6,570.00.

The grant is not repayable. However, it is taxable to Income Tax and self-employed National Insurance.

How can I claim and how long will it take to receive the money?

It is proposed that, following a claim, once deemed eligible and the amount of the grant has been calculated by HMRC, the grant should take 6 working days to reach the applicant.

You can claim from HMRC online using your Government Gateway account. The claim has to be made by the individual taxpayer and, therefore, we are unable to make a claim on your behalf. However, we can help you with any queries you may have.

For further information, please contact peter.stevens@twmsolicitors.com

For further details about our expertise in this area, please click here.

Click here to view more articles relating to the impact of COVID-19 

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