Self-employment income support scheme – status of agents and Northern Ireland verification issues

Jul 06, 2020

In recent discussions with HMRC, we once again raised the issue of Northern Ireland ID verification issues and the inability of agents to make SEISS claims on behalf of clients. HMRC has confirmed that agents will not be able to make claims for clients when the second grant opens for applications next month.  

However, we understand the issue with Northern Ireland ID verification using a Northern Ireland driving licence to set up a Government Gateway ID has now been resolved. Should taxpayers still not be able to set up a Government Gateway ID they must apply for the SEISS by phone.  

The rational for agents not being able to apply for the SEISS scheme on behalf of clients is that the SEISS scheme is short lived. According to HMRC, their resources were better directed to enabling agents to make claims under the job retention scheme which runs for a longer period until 31 October 2020 and became much more complex with the introduction of flexible furloughing from 1 July.