Self Employment Income Support Scheme: fourth grant now live

Self-employed workers will be able to claim the fourth Self Employment Income Support Scheme (SEISS) Grant from 22 April 2021.

Commenting on the launch of the grant, the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales (ICAEW) said the scheme has opened later than planned to allow HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) to “manage demand”.

What is the SEISS?

The SEISS is designed to support self-employed people throughout the coronavirus pandemic in a similar fashion to the UK’s landmark furlough scheme.

Under the initiative, eligible self-employed workers can claim 80 per cent of three months’ average trading profits, paid out in a single instalment, capped at £7,500.

To do so, they must declare that the coronavirus pandemic has affected them financially.

Who can apply?

Eligibility for the scheme will now be based on submitted 2019/20 tax return information, meaning you must have traded in 2019/20 and 2020/21 and submitted your tax return by 02 March 2021.

This comes in addition to the usual requirements:

  • Your trading profits must be no more than £50,000 and at least equal to your non-trading income.

And you must either:

  • Be currently trading but are impacted by reduced demand due to coronavirus; or
  • Have been trading but are temporarily unable to do so due to coronavirus.

And declare that:

  • You intend to continue to trade; and
  • You reasonably believe there will be a significant reduction in your trading profits due to reduced business activity, capacity, demand or inability to trade due to coronavirus.

Newly self-employed taxpayers will also have to declare their eligibility by confirming their identity and demonstrating business activity by providing three months’ worth of bank statements.

When can I apply?

It is understood that each self-employed worker is being given a personal claim date between 22 and 29 April. HMRC will inform workers when they can apply.

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