Coronavirus – Latest News
Everyone is concerned about the health implications of the rapid spread of the virus, but businesses and individuals are starting to worry about what the virus will do to their finances.
To help clients navigate through the next few difficult months David Allen has compiled a simple guide of issues to consider and help available. We will continue to update this as more information becomes available.
If you want to discuss any concerns that you have then please contact one of the team.
Update: 8 June 2020
Many restaurants and cafes have opened as a takeaway due to the impact of Coronavirus. We have highlighted some VAT considerations for hot and cold takeaway foods that could apply to you:
Hot takeaway food will continue to be subject to VAT at 20% (standard-rated).
Typical examples of food and drinks that are standard-rated if sold hot are:
- Chips sold on their own or as part of a meal
- Chinese, Indian and similar take-away meals and dishes
- Baked potatoes with a hot or cold filling
- Toasted sandwiches
- Cups of tea, coffee, chocolate etc
- Cups of soup
However some cold takeaway items can be zero rated for VAT purposes, examples include:
- Biscuits (biscuits wholly or partly covered in chocolate are standard rated)
- Chilled or frozen ready meals designed to be cooked at home
There are some food items that are standard rated regardless of how they are sold they include
- Ice cream
- Fizzy drinks
For further information or advice on how the rules on hot and cold takeaway food effect your business please contact us.
Update: 5pm 29 May 2020
Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme
On 29 May, the Chancellor announced three main changes to the scheme which begin from the end of June.
Flexible furloughing – from 1 July 2020
Previously if an employee was furloughed, they could not work at all. The introduction of flexible furloughing will help businesses begin to re-open.
From 1 July 2020, employers using the scheme will have the flexibility to be able to bring furloughed employees back to work part time. This allows employees to work part-time and remain furloughed for the rest of the time.
Employers will be responsible for paying employee’s wages whilst working. The government will continue to pay 80% of wages for any of their normal hours they do not work until the end of August.
The agreed arrangement between a business and their employee must cover at least one week and be confirmed to the employee in writing. Employers will need to report and claim for a minimum period of a week and will be required to submit data on the usual hours an employee would be expected to work in a claim period and the actual hours worked.
Part time work is not a requirement. If the employer does not have work for the employee, they can remain on furlough and the employer can continue to claim the grant for their full hours under the existing rules.
Employer Contributions – July to October
The Government is slowly tapering their contribution.
In June and July, the grant will remain the same. The government will pay 80% of wages, up to £2,500 per month, and reimburse employers NIC and employers pension. Employers will only have to pay employees for the hours they work, using the new flexible part time working.
From 1 August 2020, the government will continue to pay 80% of wages, up to £2,500 per month but employers will be expected to pay employer National Insurance (ER NICs) and pension contributions.
From 1 September, the support will reduce further. The government will pay 70% of wages, up to £2,187.50 per month for the hours the employee does not work. Employers will have to pay ER NICs, pension contributions and 10% of the wages to make up 80% of the total, up to £2,500.
From 1 October 2020, the Government will pay 60% of wages, up to £1,875 per month, for the hours the employee does not work. Employers will have to pay the remainder, as before, to make up 80% of wages, up to £2,500. This is the final month of the scheme.
Closing to new entrants from end of June
The CJRS scheme will close to new entrants from 30 June. Employers will only be able to furlough employees that they have furloughed for a full three-week period prior to 30 June, which means that an employee’s first furlough period must start by 10 June at the latest. Employers will have until 31 July to make any claims in respect of the period to 30 June.
Please get in touch with our dedicated payroll department if you would like help or support you with the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme.
Self-Employment Income Support Scheme (SEISS)
The Chancellor announced on 29 May an extension to the SEISS for eligible self-employed people whose trade has been adversely affected by the Coronavirus. Those eligible, will be able to claim a second and final SEISS grant in August. They will receive a taxable grant worth 70% of their average monthly trading profits for three months, paid out in a single instalment and capped at £6,570 in total.
The criteria remains the same as the first grant but people do not need to have claimed the first grant to claim the second grant.
Claims for the first SEISS grant must be made no later than 13 July and the eligible individual must make the claim themselves. The same applies to the second grant but we can ensure you have the information needed before making your claim, should you need support.
More information on the second SEISS grant will be available on 12 June.
If you require further information or support with your SEISS claim, please get in touch us and can help you.
Update: 1pm 1 May 2020
Announcement for Scottish businesses only – Newly self-employed Hardship Fund
Yesterday announced the support to newly self-employed individuals who have not been able to access support through other schemes.
✔️ Successful applicants will receive a one-off taxable payment of £2,000
✔️ You must be a self-employed individual who started trading between 6 April 2019 and the end of March 2020 (this does not include members of a partnership)
✔️ Your trading profits in 2019/20 must be below £50,000
✔️ You must intend to continue trading in 2020/21
✔️ Your self-employment income must be more than 50% of your total income
✔️ You are not eligible if you are in receipt of Universal Credit or working age benefit payment
✔️ If you are eligible for other Coronavirus related business support, you cannot apply for the Hardship payment as you are expected to exhaust all other possible sources of income before applying to this scheme
✔️ Applications are being processed by your local council within 10 working days of receiving all the information required to make a decision
✔️ Once your application has been approved, you will receive an email confirming that the hardship payment will be transferred to your bank within 4 working days
✔️ You can continue to work or take on other employment whilst in receipt of the Hardship payment
You can apply for the scheme at https://supportdg.dumgal.gov.uk/article/20814/Support-for-the-self-employed
If you would like more information, support or advice, please get in touch on 01387 270 340.
Update: 11am 28 April 2020
Last night’s announcement will be welcomed news for struggling businesses, particularly those small and medium sized.
The Coronavirus Bounce Back Loan will provide a lifeline to those that have been struggling through the red tape of the Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CBILS).
These loans will be:
✔️ Launched on 4 May 2020
✔️ Up to 25% of turnover, to a maximum loan of £50,000
✔️ Guaranteed 100% by the Government
✔️ Capital and interest free for the first 12 months
✔️ For businesses that were viable on 31 December 2019
You cannot apply if you’re already claiming under the CBILS.
The Chancellor has said that most eligible firms will be able to access this loan by filling out a standard form, and the funds will be available within 24 hours of approval.
Update: 4pm 24 April 2020
The UK Government has launched a new ‘support finder’ tool which will help businesses and self-employed people to quickly and easily identify what financial support is available to them during the Coronavirus pandemic.
The new business support finder tool can be found at www.gov.uk/business-coronavirus-support-finder
For a jargon-free summary of the support available, please see our website and if you would like to speak to us regarding your personal circumstances, please give us a call on 01228 711888 or 01387 270 340.
Update: 8pm 17 April 2020
Today the Chancellor has announced that the CJRS has been extended to 30 June 2020. This scheme was originally open for three months from the 1 March to the end of May but now businesses have much more certainty with the scheme being extended to the end of June.
Our dedicated payroll team are preparing for the online portal becoming live on Monday through which they can make the claim under the CJRS. We are working closely with our clients to get their claims submitted and provide the support and guidance they need at this time. If you have any queries or need any support and guidance in dealing with the impact of Coronavirus, please call our offices on 01228 711 888 or 01387 270 340.
Update: 8pm 15 April 2020
Important change to the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme
HMRC have updated their guidance regarding the CJRS, to change the date when an employee has to have been on the employer’s payroll in order to qualify for the furlough scheme. This date has been changed from 28 February 2020 to 19 March 2020. This will benefit people who previously fell outside the scheme because they had recently changed jobs, although their new employer would need to have included them on an RTI submission for PAYE purposes on or before 19 March 2020. HMRC have also confirmed that businesses will be paid the funds within six working days of the information being submitted via the online portal, which is going to be live from 20 April 2020.
If you have any queries in relation to furlough leave or any other queries, please do not hesitate to get in touch on 01228 711 888 or 01387 270 340.
Update: 6pm 15 April 2020
The Scottish Government have announced this morning that they are introducing further support measures for small businesses affected by the Coronavirus pandemic. This support is aimed at businesses or self employed individuals that were not able to fully access previously announced measures.
We are expecting more information to be released over the next few days and will keep you updated. If you would like help with the application process or to discuss your own circumstances, please give us a call on 01387 270 340.
Update: 9am 9 April 2020
Chancellor Rishi Sunak has pledged £750m of support for charities. This includes support for UK-wide smaller charities and for charities providing essential services, including hospices and organisations helping vulnerable people.
This is fantastic news for our Charity clients and we will be in touch once we have more details.
Update: 9am 26 March 2020
From 30 March 2020, the Government have granted a six month extension to MOT due dates for cars, motorcycles and light vans.
You do not need to do anything to extend your vehicle’s MOT expiry date if it’s on or after 30 March 2020. However, you must make sure your vehicle is safe to drive (‘roadworthy’).
For further guidance, please visit www.gov.uk/guidance/coronavirus-covid-19-mots-for-cars-vans-and-motorcycles-due-from-30-march-2020
Update: 25 March 2020
Application for Government Grants – Dumfries and Galloway
These Grants will be paid through the Council and an application form to apply for these is available below.