Submitted by Catherine Dhanjal
| on Thu, 03/19/2020 - 14:43 | In Uncategorized
Since the Budget just over a week ago, the government has already announced additional measures designed to help businesses mitigate the impact that the Covid-19 virus pandemic is having on the economy.
Business rates holiday for companies in leisure, retail and hospitality
All businesses in leisure, retail and hospitality are now eligible for a 100% business rates holiday, going far beyond the original announcement of this being just for businesses with a rateable value below £51,000.
Businesses affected by the government’s advice to avoid pubs and theatres has caused concern amongst those businesses who were unsure whether they would be able to claim on their insurance. The government has now announced that businesses who have policies that cover pandemics or government-ordered closure should be able to claim. Businesses need to check the terms and conditions of their policy and to contact their insurer direct for clarification. Standard business interruption insurance policies exclude pandemics and are more focused on damage to property.
HMRC Time to Pay
The government may provide support for businesses and self-employed people whose finances are affected by Covid-19. Decisions are being made on a case-by-case basis but support for tax affairs may be available. The helpline number is: 0800 0159 559.
Businesses in retail, hospitality and leisure can apply for a £25,000 grant if they have a rateable value over £15,000 and below £51,000.
Small business grants
The small business grant has increased to £10,000 (from £3,000) for small businesses who are eligible for small business rates relief.
Government-backed loans will be available for businesses affected by the pandemic.
Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme
Businesses can now borrow up to £5m with the interest suspended for the first six months.
Airlines, railway operators and bus companies could be temporarily nationalised to ensure critical services run during the pandemic.
IR35 for the private sector has been postponed until April 2021.
Statutory Sick Pay (SSP)
Small and medium sized businesses with up to 250 employees will be entitled to a full refund on statutory sick pay for a 14-day isolation period. Staff will not need to provide a sick note.
We expect more details be revealed in the coming days, including information which makes it clearer how to apply for various measures. It is probable that additional measures will be announced over the coming weeks.
Banks are also taking measures to make available payment holidays on mortgages, credit cards and loans.
The latest government guidance is available online at: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/guidance-to-employers-and-businesses-about-covid-19
How we can help
If you need help with any tax-related issues and would like to speak to us, give us a call on 01761 241 861 or email us today.
We will be pleased to advise you or to invite you into our offices in Paulton, near Bristol and Bath, for a consultation.