Self-employment income support scheme – second grant remains open for applications

Aug 31, 2020

The application process for the second SEISS grant opened on 17 August. HMRC has been busy in recent weeks writing to self-employed people who may be eligible. As with the first grant, taxpayers have been given a date to make a claim. They can claim any time between their allocated date and 19‌‌ October 2020.

The eligibility criteria for the second grant is exactly the same as the first grant – so self-employed people who were eligible for the first SEISS grant will be eligible for the second grant, so long as their business has been adversely affected since 14‌‌ July 2020.  This typically means that their business has experienced lower income and/or higher costs because of COVID-19 since 14‌‌ July.

According to HMRC, there is no minimum threshold over which a business’s income, costs or activity need to have changed by, but taxpayers must keep appropriate records as evidence of how their business has been adversely affected.

The second taxable grant is worth 70% of average monthly trading profits, a reduction from the 80% available under the first grant. This is being paid out in a single instalment and is based on three months’ trading profits capped at a maximum of £6,570. Once people have completed a claim, they will receive payment within 6 working days.

Self-employed parents whose income may have been affected if they took time out to have children are also now able to claim if they meet the eligibility criteria. There’s more information for new parents, including an online form on GOV‌.UK

Once again, HMRC is reminding agents that they cannot make a claim for a client. This is because it will trigger an alert and that leads to delays in payment reaching people who need the money to support their business.  However, you can play a critical role in helping your client understand their eligibility and level of entitlement.

If your clients can apply online, this is the quickest and easiest way to claim whilst helping HMRC prioritise those that most need extra help. It takes most people less than 5 mins to claim online using their Government Gateway account. There are also new webinars and a short video on HMRC’s YouTube channel that you or your clients can use to ensure you know how the process works.