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Applications Open for Third Tranche of Support for Self Employed

Applications Open for Third Tranche of Support for Self Employed

HMRC has opened applications for the third tranche of financial support intended to help self-employed people across the UK who have seen their earning ability curtailed during 2020 due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Anyone potentially eligible for the financial support being made available will need to apply to the Self Employed Income Support Scheme (SEISS), which has been giving grants to eligible claimants at various points throughout the year.

The latest and third instalment of the scheme is intended to provide support to self-employed people through until the end of March 2021 if they still cannot work because of the pandemic and the broader public health situation.

Applications for a third SEISS grant opened at the end of November, with eligible claimants potentially getting grants worth up to 80 per cent of their past average monthly trading profits, up to a limit of £7,500.

Claims being made for grants at this point need to be made before January 29, with the extended programme available to anyone who was given grants during the first and second phases of the SEISS.

Among the requirements made of applicants is that they should have traded during the tax year 2018 to 2019 and submitted the relevant tax returns to HMRC on that basis.

Applicants must also intend to continue trading during the tax year 2020 to 2021 and have trading profits worth no more than £50,000.

Limited company directors have been told that they are not eligible to make claims for self-employment support through the SEISS.

Part of the process of applying for a support grant as a self-employed person involves demonstrating how the pandemic and the various lockdowns have impacted your business, which means evidencing reduced demand or an inability to trade.

Many thousands and potentially millions of freelancers and self-employed people have seen their financial situations made markedly worse this year as a result of the pandemic.

In fact, a recent report published by the digital bank Starling and the Association of Independent Professionals and the Self-Employed (IPSE) suggested that around one million freelancers in the UK have been pushed into debt over the course of the pandemic.

David Tattersall
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