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Latest update: Covid-19 business continuity advice
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Latest update: Covid-19 business continuity advice

Interruption Loans & Grant Support Information announced within the budget

A new Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme, delivered by the British Business Bank, will enable businesses to apply for a loan of up to £5 million, with the government covering up to 80% of any losses with no fees.

Businesses can access the first 6 months of that finance interest free, as government will cover the first 6 months of interest payments.

For businesses with fewer than 250 employees, the cost of providing 14 days of Statutory Sick Pay per employee will be refunded by the government in full. This will provide 2 million businesses with up to £2 billion to cover the costs of large-scale sick leave.

There will be a £10,000 cash grant to our smallest businesses, delivered by local authorities. Small businesses that pay little or no business rates and are eligible for small business rate relief (SBBR) or rural rate relief will be contacted by their local authority – they do NOT need to apply. The funding will be provided to local authorities in early April.

Guidance for local authorities on the scheme will be provided shortly.

Finally, the government is introducing a business rates holiday for retail, hospitality and leisure businesses in England for the 2020 to 2021 tax year.

A £25,000 grant will also be provided to retail, hospitality and leisure businesses operating from smaller premises, with a rateable value between £15,000 and £51,000.

Any enquiries on eligibility for, or provision of, the reliefs should be directed to the relevant local authority. Guidance for local authorities on the business rates holiday will be published by 20 March.

 

Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme

• A new Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme will launch in the week commencing 23 March. This will cover loans and overdrafts. The maximum is £1.2 million and there is no fee payable to the Government. This is borrowing that must be repaid, these are not grants.
• To access the Scheme, you should talk to your bank or finance provider as soon as possible and discuss your business plan with them. This will help your finance provider to act quickly once the scheme has launched. If you have an existing loan with monthly repayments you may want to ask for a repayment holiday to help with cash flow.
• The lending decision is taken by each individual provider, not by government. To find the full rules of the Scheme and list of accredited lenders, search online for “Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme” and this will take you to the British Business Bank website. All the major banks will offer the Scheme once it has launched. There are 40 accredited providers in all.

The Government currently advises businesses to continue to operate as usual where possible.

There is presently no reason businesses or individuals should stop carrying out their daily activities as they normally would.

Businesses should check for daily updates at GOV.UK and subscribe to receive email alerts to ensure they are acting on the most up to date information.

 

Tax Helpline to support businesses affected by coronavirus (COVID-19)
HMRC has a set up a phone helpline to support businesses and self-employed people concerned about not being able to pay their tax due to coronavirus (COVID-19).
The helpline allows any business or self-employed individual who is concerned about paying their tax due to coronavirus to get practical help and advice. Up to 2,000 experienced call handlers are available to support businesses and individuals when needed.
If you run a business or are self-employed and are concerned about paying your tax due to coronavirus, you can call
HMRC’s Helpline for help and advice: 0800 0159 559.

For those who are unable to pay due to coronavirus, HMRC will discuss your specific circumstances to explore:

  • Agreeing an instalment arrangement
  • Suspending debt collection proceedings
  • Cancelling penalties and interest where you have administrative difficulties contacting or paying HMRC immediately
The Helpline number is 0800 0159 559 – and is an addition to other HMRC phone contact numbers.
Opening hours are Monday to Friday 8am to 8pm, and Saturday 8am to 4pm. The helpline will not be available on Bank Holidays.For individual businesses, the first port of call for advice and support is gov.uk. However, businesses in England, of all sizes, can pick up the phone and speak directly to an advisor at the Staffordshire Business Helpline on 0300 111 8002 or the National Business Support Helpline on 0300 456 3565

Other Useful Contacts

NEW: Companies House has produced guidance if coronavirus (COVID-19) has affected your company and you need more time to file your accounts. Find all the information here.

For more information on Late Payment visit the following link:
https://www.smallbusinesscommissioner.gov.uk/

For more information on support with paying your Tax visit the following link:
https://www.gov.uk/difficulties-paying-hmrc
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