As there have been numerous different schemes opening and closing to support Businesses through the Pandemic, we have compiled a Business Support Update to keep you informed of the latest changes and support available.
Strategic Framework Business Fund
The Scottish Government have announced a COVID support fund – Strategic Framework Business Fund. The aim of this latest grant is to support businesses forced to close due to their local COVID restrictions.
In order to be eligible for the grant you must have been affected for any period after 2nd November. You must have a business bank and pay non-domestic rates. The grants are paid every 4 weeks, however they can be for a period of less than 4 weeks in length.
Unfortunately this grant is applied for via local councils and as such we are unable to apply for them on your behalf however if you need any help then please do let us know.
For more information, visit https://findbusinesssupport.gov.scot/service/funding/strategic-framework-business-fund
Business support update – CJRS
The Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme has now been extended. This covers any Employee, employed before the 30th October and whose work has been reduced due to the Pandemic. For the period 1 November 2020 to 30 April 2021 the government grant will cover the full 80% of wages – the Employer paying the usual National Insurance and Pension. Employers will not be required to contribute or top-up for the hours not worked.
Claims for each month must be made before the 14th of the following month.
For more information, visit https://findbusinesssupport.gov.scot/service/funding/coronavirus-job-retention-scheme
Creative Freelancer Fund
The Scottish government has supported a grant through Creative Scotland and Screen Scotland. The fund has been introduced to support creative freelancers with one off payments from £500 to £2,000. Applications have reopened this week and will be open as long as funds are available.
For more information, visit https://findbusinesssupport.gov.scot/service/funding/hardship-fund-for-creative-freelancers
Hospitality, retail and leisure top-up grants
The Chancellor has announced a one-off grant to support retail, hospitality and leisure businesses. The top-up grant will be worth up to £9,000 per property. It has been introduced to support businesses through the coming spring. The grants will be awarded to closed businesses that cannot operate remotely.
For more information, visit https://www.gov.uk/government/news/46-billion-in-new-lockdown-grants-to-support-businesses-and-protect-jobs
VAT Deferral New Payment Scheme
Businesses who deferred VAT due from 20 March to 30 June 2020 will now have the option to pay in smaller payments over a longer period. The amount that had previously been due by the end of March 2021 can now be paid in 11 smaller instalments due by March 2022. This will be an opt-in process and means that deferred VAT liabilities no longer need to be paid by the end of March 2021.
We will be coming out with more details on this shortly and how to opt for it.
New Self Assessment Self-Serve Time To Pay Scheme
If you deferred paying your July 2020 Payment on Account, you will need to pay the deferred amount, in addition to any balancing payment and first 2020/21 Payment on Account, by 31 January 2021. This may be a larger payment than you usually pay in January.
If you are unable to pay your Self-Assessment (SA) bill in full by 31 January 2021, you can set up a Time to Pay payment plan of up to 12 months online. If employers have SA tax debts of up to £30,000, they will be able to access this Time to Pay facility through GOV.UK and will get automatic and immediate approval. If their SA debts are over £30,000, or they need longer than 12 months to repay their debt in full, they will still be able to use our Time to Pay arrangement by calling HMRC.
Extension to the reduced rate of VAT for Hospitality and Tourism
The government has extended the temporary reduced rate of VAT (5%) to tourist attractions and goods and services supplied by the hospitality sector. This relief came into effect on 15 July 2020 and will now end on 31 March 2021 across the UK.
For more information, visit https://www.gov.uk/guidance/vat-reduced-rate-for-hospitality-holiday-accommodation-and-attractions
Employees asked to Work from Home
If you’ve asked your employees to work from home, and you’ve not reimbursed them already, your employees may be entitled to claim tax relief on additional household expenses they’ve incurred, such as heating and lighting.
From 6 April 2020, this tax relief is based on £6 per week or £26 per month. It was £4 per week, or £18 per month before 6 April 2020.
For more information, visit https://www.gov.uk/tax-relief-for-employees/working-at-home
Please feel free to contact us if you have any questions regarding the business support updates and schemes available.