SEISS grant increase
Nov 11, 2020
Following on from the Prime Minister’s announcement of England going into a second lockdown on 5 November, the Chancellor Rishi Sunak has confirmed that support through the Self-Employment Income Support Scheme (SEISS) will be increased.
In his Winter Economy Plan the Chancellor announced that the SEISS grant would continue to be available. A third grant, scheduled to run from November to January 2021, was originally due to be at the reduced rate of 20% of average trading profits and be capped at £1,875. Later in October this was increased to 40% of average profits, capped at £3,750. Now, as the self employed navigate a second national lockdown, Rishi Sunak has confirmed that this third grant will be calculated at 80% of average trading profits, up to a maximum of £7,500 – a further increase on the 55% of profits initially announced.
Who is eligible for the SEISS grant?
Businesses that are temporarily unable to trade due to coronavirus were originally going to be excluded from claiming the third and fourth grants, but they will now be eligible.
However, disappointingly, those newly self-employed workers and limited company directors who were excluded from the first and second grants, will continue to receive no financial support from this third round of grants.
To be eligible for the third round of the SEISS, as a self-employed individual you must:
- have been previously eligible for the first and second grant of the SEISS (even if you did not actually claim a grant previously)
- declare that you intend to continue to trade
- either be currently actively trading, but impacted by reduced demand due to coronavirus or;
- have been previously trading but are temporarily unable to do so due to coronavirus
When will the grants be available?
The third SEISS grant will be paid faster than originally planned, and the claims window will open on 30 November rather than 14 December. HMRC expects to pay grants within six working days of the date of your claim. The deadline when applications will close is yet to be announced.
The third SEISS grant covers November, December and January. You will be able to claim 80% of your average trading profits for these three months, and the grant will be paid out to you in a single instalment capped at £7,500.
As per the first and second grants, the third round grants will be taxable income and subject to National Insurance contributions.
The level of a fourth grant, planned to cover February to April 2021, is being kept under review and will be announced in due course. The eligibility criteria remain unchanged, and there is likely to be no extension to those who were previously excluded.
If you would like any help or advice in making a claim for the third SEISS grant, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with the PT team. You can also read more about the SEISS grant extension in HMRC’s factsheet.