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COVID-19: Summary of Financial Support Measures – last updated 28 January 2022

This article summarises the current business support measures the UK and Scottish governments, along with other NGBs and organisations have introduced as a result of the COVID-19 outbreak.

For each measure we have listed the date of the latest change. Click on any of the measures listed and you will be taken to the appropriate part of this article which covers that topic in more detail.

Last updated 28 January 2022: Statutory Sick Pay the claims portal for SSP refunds is now open; December and January Business Support Top Up (Scotland only) information about the Close Contact Services Fund and the Scottish Wedding Industry Fund has been added

Business Interruption Insurance – updated 1 February 2021
Business Rates Holidays – updated 28 October 2021
Business Ventilation Fund (Scotland only) – updated 17 November 2021
GOV.UK Business Support Finder Tool – updated 21 April 2020
Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS)/Furloughed Staff – updated 31 October 2021
Covid Corporate Financing Facility (CCFF) – updated 14 April 2020
Creative Scotland Funding – updated 22 December 2021
December and January Business Support Top Up (Scotland only)updated 28 January 2022
Employee Taxable Expenses and Benefits – updated 5 June 2020
Eviction Protection for Commercial Tenants (England only) – updated 17 June 2021
Helplines: HMRC and Scottish Government 
Landlords – Private Rented Sector Loan (Scotland only) – updated 11 March 2021
Northumberland Covid Recovery Grant  – updated 18 January 2022
Omicron Hospitality and Leisure Grants (England only)updated 18 January 2022
Recovery Loan Scheme – updated 28 October 2021
Self-employed Support (SEISS) – updated 4 October 2021
Statutory Sick Payupdated 28 January 2022
Test & Trace/Self Isolation Support – updated 16 August 2021
VAT Cut: food, accommodation and attractions – updated 3 March 2021

 

Omicron Hospitality and Leisure Grants and Additional Restrictions Grants (England only)

(Update as of 18 January 2022) Following increasing pressure from the UK’s hospitality and leisure sectors, additional support measures have been put in place for businesses that have been impacted by the Omicron variant.

Businesses in the hospitality, leisure and accommodation sectors in England will be eligible for one-off Omicron Hospitality and Leisure Grants (OHLG) of up to £6,000 per premises.

Recipients of the one-off grant must be solvent businesses, and ratepayers in the hospitality and leisure sector eg a pub, hotel, restaurant, cinema, or amusement park. The level of the grant is dependent upon the rateable value of the property:

  • £2,667 for a property with a rateable value between £0 – £15,000 on 30 December 2021
  • £4,000 for a property with a rateable value between £15,000 – £51,000 on 30 December 2021
  • £6,000 for a property with a rateable value over £51,000 on 30 December 2021

Businesses can make an application for each property with a rateable value that they operate from, although each property requires a separate application.

You must apply to your Local Authority for payment.  More details including the evidence you will need to provide can be found using the following links. Or you can find a link to your local council by entering your postcode here.

The government has also provided to local authorities to make discretionary grants to businesses been impacted by Omicron but do not meet the eligibility criteria for OHLG.  This Additional Restrictions Grant (ARG), does vary based on each authorities local economic need but can include those businesses operating in the hospitality, leisure and accommodation sectors which do not have a rateable value and self-employed taxi and private hire drivers.  Please check each council’s website for further details.

If you require any further information please contact the Partner who looks after your affairs here at GWA.

 

December and January Business Support Top Up (Scotland only)

(Update as of 28 January 2022) The Scottish government have announced funding to provide December and January Business Support Top Up for the hospitality sector to help compensate businesses who have lost bookings during this key trading period.

To be eligible for grants, businesses must be registered for non-domestic rates (NDR) as of 8 December 2021, and also as one of the following categories of business:

  • public houses
  • restaurants
  • cafes
  • other licensed premises classed as hospitality
  • nightclubs
  • hotels with bars and restaurants

The grants are a one-off payment and are dependent upon the rateable value of the business property:

  • £4,500 for premises with a rateable value of up to and including £51,000
  • £6,800 for premises with a rateable value of £51,001 or above

For most of the eligible businesses, local authorities already hold sufficient data in order to establish eligibility and will contact businesses directly to make payment.  More details are available here on the scot.gov website.

In addition the Scottish government have allocated funding to a January Business Support Top Up which includes a wider range of business in the hospitality and leisure sectors including sports facilities, cinemas, casinos and soft play centres.  This funding is also being administered by local authorities who should contact businesses directly.

The one-off payments are based on the rateable value of premises:

For hospitality businesses:

  • £1,400 for premises which have a rateable value of up to and including £51,000 or
  • £2,100 for premises have a rateable value of £51,001 or above

For leisure businesses

  • £2,100 for premises which have a rateable value of up to and including £51,000 or
  • £3,150 for premises have a rateable value of £51,001 or above

More information including a full list of eligible businesses can be found here on the scot.gov website.

 

The Close Contact Services Fund provides support for Scottish businesses in close contact settings who are impacted by the requirement for physical distancing and capacity limits.

To be eligible you must own or rent premises with a non-domestic rates (NDR) and be registered as one of the following categories of business:

  • beauty service
  • hairdressing and hair removal service
  • spa and wellness service.

The grant is a one-off payment of £1,000 for self-employed businesses or £1,500 for an NDR registered premised business owner. More information can be found here on the scot.gov website.

 

The Scottish Nightclub Closure Fund can also provide one-off grant support for nightclubs that have been required to close due to COVID-19 requirements. The one-off payments are based on the rateable value of premises:

  • £25,000 for premises which have a rateable value of up to and including £40,000
  • £35,000 for premises which have a rateable value between £40,001 and £75,000
  • £55,000 for premises which have a rateable value of £75,001 or above.

More information can be found here on the scot.gov website.

 

The Business Support Table Service Fund will provide financial support to public houses affected by the measure to control the Omicron variant in January 2022 that table service must be introduced.

The fund will be administered by local authorities. One-off payments will be based on the rateable value of premises:

  • £2,500 for premises which have a rateable value of £51,000 or below
  • £5,000 for premises which have a rateable value of £51,001 or above

More information can be found here on the scot.gov website.  The fund will close for applications on 11 February 2022.

 

The Scottish Taxi and Private Hire Driver and Operator Support Fund 2022 has also been announced by the Scottish government.

If you are a driver, you may be eligible for a payment of £750 if you received support through the Taxi Driver and Private Hire Vehicle Driver Support Fund in 2021.

If you are a taxi or private hire operator and received support though the 2021 funding schme you may also be entilde to an additional on-off grant. This will be based on the number of vehicle licences each operator holds, and which are currently active:

  • owner/operators with one vehicle – a single award of £750
  • operators with two to nine vehicles – a single award of £3,000
  • operators with 10 – 49 vehicles – a single award of £7,000
  • operators with 50 or more vehicles – a single award of £15,000.

You should not need to apply for this as payments are being administered by your local authority.  More information can be found here on the scot.gov website.

 

The Scottish Wedding Industry Fund Top Up is available for those businesses previously in receipt of grant funding from the 2021 Scottish Wedding Industry Support Fund.

You do not need to apply for this funding.  The enterprise agency within your local area will contact you via email from 20 January 2022.  However, you musr respond to this email by 5pm on Monday 31 January.
Eligible businesses will receive an additional 12.5% of their original grant award. Therefore businesses who previously received:

  • £5,000 will receive an additional £625
  • £10,000 will receive an additional £1,250
  • £15,000 will receive an additional £1,875
  • £25,000 will receive an additional £3,125.

 

Statutory Sick Pay

(Update as of 28 January 2022) The government will cover the cost of Statutory Sick Pay (SSP) for COVID-related absences for businesses across the UK with fewer than 250 employees.

The maximum claim per employee is two weeks at the statutory sick pay (SSP) rate of £96.35 per week (£192.70 in total).  Employers will be able to claim for COVID related sickness absences occurring from 21 December 2021.

The reintroduction of the SSP Rebate scheme is temporary.  An end date has not yet been announced, but related legislation states that a claim may not be made after the end of 24 March 2022.

The online claims process is now open and can be found with further guidance here on the GOV.UK website.

 

COVID-19 Job Retention Scheme (CJRS)

(Update as of 31 October 2021) More details in relation to the CJRS can be found here on the GOV.UK website.

Overclaims:  We would strongly encourage all of our clients that have received CJRS grants to double-check their entitlement.  The recently introduced Finance Act 2020, provides recipients with a 90-day period to inform HMRC of any overclaimed amount and also provides HMRC with powers to recover grant payments to which the recipient is not entitled, as well as to charge penalties.

The onus is on the taxpayer to notify HMRC if they have overclaimed and this must be done within 90 days of the Act’s Royal Assent (so by 20 October 2020) or 90 days of receipt of the grant, whichever is the later. HMRC has published guidance on how to repay overclaimed CJRS grants as well as a factsheet on how the penalty rules will apply.

It is important to note that error penalties may also apply if there are mistakes are made when putting the grant figures on tax returns. The key risks affecting entitlement to CJRS grants include:

  • grants not used for the purposes for which they are intended;
  • calculation errors; and
  • employees working during periods that they are on furlough.

For  more information on the penalties that may be charged in relation to an overpayment please see the latest HMRC factsheet.

There is the ability to delete a claim, as long as it is within 72 hours of submitting it, via the online claim service. If your claim has been submitted for a period of longer than 72 hours you should follow the process outlined below.

If you have made an error and overclaimed but do not plan to submit further claims, you should contact HMRC to inform them of the error, and discuss how to pay back any overclaimed amounts. HMRC will provide a reference number and will also confirm the process for making the necessary payment to correct the error.  If you have made an error and overclaimed and are planning to make further claims, the error can be adjusted for within your next CJRS claim. Your new claim amount will be reduced to reflect the overclaimed amount.  You should keep a record of this adjustment for six years.

If you have made an error that has resulted in an underclaimed amount, you should contact HMRC. HMRC will conduct further checks before any additional payment is made.

If you have any concerns or questions about CJRS we would encourage you to contact us and we will be happy to help.  Further guidance can be found here on the HMRC website.

 

Support for the Self-employed (SEISS)

(Update as of 4 October 2021) Claims for the fifth Self-Employed Income Support Scheme grant (SEISS) have now closed. The last date for making a claim was 30 September 2021.

More information on the grant can be found here on the GOV.UK website.

Overclaims:  We would strongly encourage all of our clients that have received SEISS grants to double-check their entitlement.  The recently introduced Finance Act 2020, provides recipients with a 90-day period to inform HMRC of any overclaimed amount and also provides HMRC with powers to recover grant payments to which the recipient is not entitled, as well as to charge penalties.

The onus is on the taxpayer to notify HMRC if they have overclaimed and this must be done within 90 days of the Act’s Royal Assent (so by 20 October 2020) or 90 days of receipt of the grant, whichever is the later. HMRC has published guidance on how to repay overclaimed SEISS grants as well as a factsheet on how the penalty rules will apply.

It is important to note that error penalties may also apply if there are mistakes are made when putting the grant figures on tax returns. The key risks affecting entitlement to SEISS grants include:

  • the trade was not adversely affected by coronavirus;
  • the trade did not continue in the tax year 2019/20 (eg. because the business was incorporated); or
  • there was no intention to continue to trade in the tax year 2020/21.

For  more information on the penalties that may be charged in relation to an overpayment please see the latest HMRC factsheet.

A word of warning. We know there has been an escalation in the number of fraudulent texts, telephone calls and emails pretending to be from HMRC.  Please be extra vigilant and never provide any bank account, credit card or payment details.  You will only ever be asked to access SEISS via the GOV.UK online service.

 

Test and Trace Support Payment (England) / Self-Isolation Support Grant (Scotland)

(Update as of 16 August 2021) In England, from 16 August 2021, fully vaccinated adults are no longer required to self-isolate if identified as a contact by NHS Test and Trace. This means they are no longer eligible for the Test and Trace Support Payment scheme.

If you are not fully vaccinated, employed or self-employed on a low income, and can’t work from home while self-isolating, you may be entitled to financial support of £500. To be eligible for the £500 payment, you must have been notified through NHS Test and Trace and have received a unique 8 character ID number. You must also:

  • be aged over 16
  • be employed or self-employed and unable to work from home and face losing income as a result
  • receive at least one of the following benefits: Universal Credit, Working Tax Credit, income-based Employment and Support Allowance, Jobseeker’s Allowance, Income Support, Housing Benefit and/or Pension Credit
  • have been told to stay at home and self-isolate by NHS Test and Trace on or after 28 September 2020
  • you have been told to self-isolate by NHS Test and Trace, either because you have tested positive for coronavirus or you have recently been in close contact with someone who has tested positive and you have NOT been fully vaccinated

In Scotland, the Self-Isolation Support Grant is to help people who are working on low incomes to self-isolate to prevent the spread of COVID-19. To qualify for a payment you must:

  • have been told to self-isolate by Test and Protect Scotland (or equivalent service from elsewhere in the UK); or
  • have been notified by the Protect Scotland app (or equivalent app) to self-isolate and this requirement can be individually verified; or
  • be the identified appropriate parent or primary carer of a child under 16 who has been required by the Test and Protect Service (or equivalent service) or a school-based Incident Management Team notification to self-isolate
  • be the identified appropriate carer of a person over 16 who has been required by the Test and Protect Service (of equivalent service), local public health director or a local Incident Management Team notification to self-isolate.

In addition you must:

  • be employed or self-employed
  • have reduced earnings because you’re unable to work from home
  • are assessed as having a low income

You must apply to your Local Authority for the self-isolation payment.  More details including the evidence you will need to provide can be found using the following links:

 

Employee Taxable Expenses and Benefits

(Update as of 5 June 2020) The government has provided information about how to treat certain expenses and benefits that may be applicable to employees during the COVID-19 crisis.  Information can be found here on the GOV.UK website and it includes how to report these to HMRC.

The list of expenses and benefits is pretty extensive and some of the guidance does not allow much flexibility to assist employees bearing in mind the current exceptional circumstances. We would therefore recommend you read the information quite carefully and if you have any questions or require further clarification please get in touch.

 

Business Rates Holidays

(Update as of 28 October 2021) Eligible businesses within the retail, hospitality and leisure sectors in England will see the 100% business rate holiday change at the end of June 2021.

From 1 July 2021 until 31 March 2022 this relief will be reduced and businesses will receive 66% business rates relief. The reduction will be capped at £2m per business for properties that were forced to close on 5 January 2021, or £105,000 per business for those legally allowed to open during the last national lockdown starting 5 January.

For retail, hospitality, leisure and aviation businesses in Scotland the 100% rates relief will continue for the 2021/22 tax year until 31 March 2022. However, from April 2021, you will be required to fill in an application form with your local council to receive this relief

More details on the eligibility for the business rates relief can be found here on the GOV.UK website and here on the mygov.scot website.

In the Autumn budget the Chancellor announced that there will also be a 50% discount on business rates for one year from 2022 to 2023, up to a cap of £110,000.

You may be entitled to other types of business rates relief eg. small business, rural, charitable or enterprise zone relief.  If you have any concerns or require further guidance please do get in touch.

 

Recovery Loan Scheme

(Update as of 28 October 2021) The Recovery Loan Scheme (RLS) replaces Bounce Back Loans and Coronavirus Business Interruption Loans (CBILS/CLBILS) which ended on 31 March.

The new scheme aims to help businesses impacted by COVID-19 and can be used for any legitimate business purpose, including managing cashflow, investment and growth.

The RLS will be open to all businesses including those who have already received support under the existing COVID-19 guaranteed loan schemes.  A key aim of the scheme is to improve the terms on offer to businesses.  If you are able to secure a commercial loan from a lender on better terms, without requiring the guarantee provided by the RLS, you should consider doing so.

Lenders can provide up to £10 million as one of the following facilities:

  • term loan – with loan periods from 3 months to 6 years
  • overdraft – with loan periods from 3 months to 3 years
  • invoice finance – with loan periods from 3 months to 3 years
  • asset finance – with loan periods from 3 moths to 6 years

The minimum facilities available under the scheme are £1,000 for asset and invoice finance and £25,001 for term loans and overdrafts. The maximum amount is £10 million per business (maximum £30million per group).

If you are borrowing £250,000 or less the lender will not require any form of personal guarantee. If you are borrowing more than £250,000 the lender may request personal guarantees.

The specific terms of each loan will depend on the individual lender. You will be required to follow the lender’s usual borrowing process, which will include standard credit and fraud checks, and lenders will ask for information to support the application and demonstrate that the repayments are affordable. Required information may  include:

  • a business plan
  • management accounts
  • historic accounts
  • details of assets held by the business.

In the Autumn Budget, the government announced that the Recovery Loan Scheme will be extended by six months to 30 June 2022.  Hoevere, from 1 January 2022, the following changes will come into force:

  • the scheme will only be open to small and medium sized enterprises (turnover <£45m)
  • the maximum amount of finance available will be £2 million per business (maximum amount per Group limited to £6m)
  • the guarantee coverage that the government will provide to lenders will be reduced to 70%

These changes will apply to all offers made from 1 January 2022.

The RLS is administered by the British Business Bank. More information including FAQs for applicants can be found here on the British Business Bank website.

If you would like to discuss the RLS in more detail or require help in collating the information required to apply please get in touch.

 

Covid Corporate Financing Facility (CCFF)

(Update as of 14 April 2020) The Covid Corporate Financing Facility (CCFF), which is co-ordinated by HM Treasury and Bank of England, will provide funding to all UK businesses by purchasing commercial paper of up to one-year maturity, issued by firms that make a material contribution to the UK economy. Commercial paper, also called CP, is an instrument used for obtaining short-term funding.

This should help businesses across a range of sectors pay wages and suppliers, whilst they are experiencing disruption to their cash flows.

This will be administered by the Bank of England and further details can be found on the Bank of England website.

 

VAT Cut – Food and Non-Alcoholic Drinks / Accommodation and Attractions

(Update as of 3 March 2021) The reduced 5% VAT on food, accommodation and attractions will continue to apply until 30 September 2021.  From 1 October, businesses in these sectors won’t go straight back to the 20% rate and instead will pay an interim rate of 12.5% for another six months.

The reduced 5% rate of VAT will apply to:

  • food and non-alcoholic drinks sold by restaurants, pubs, bars, cafés and similar premises for on-premises consumption
  • hot takeaway food and hot takeaway non-alcoholic beverages
  • supplies of accommodation, including camping and pitches
  • admission to attractions, including zoos, cinemas and theme parks

For businesses affected it will also mean an amendment to accounting software and possibly prices.

It is worth noting that businesses can benefit from lower VAT rates at the time of booking even where the higher VAT rate applies when the customer benefits from the product or service. For example, the payment for hotel reservation received before October 2021 is subject to 5% VAT even if the room is taken in July 2022.

The purpose of the VAT reduction is to support businesses, but the contract that a business may have in place with their customer might require them to pass on any VAT savings to them. This could result in some negotiating to share any VAT savings. Ideally a VAT inclusive price will have been agreed up front so that the full saving can be retained by the business.

More details can be found on the GOV.UK website.  If you require any clarification please do call either the partner who looks after your affairs or our expert VAT team who will try and answer any questions you may have.

 

Protection from Eviction for Commercial Tenants

(Update as of 17 June 2021) Within England, the measures that apply to commercial tenants who are unable to pay rent on their commercial property have been extended. Commercial tenants will now be protected from the risk of eviction until the 25 March 2022.  The measures were due to end on 30 June 2021.

It is important to highlight that this measure is not the same as a rental holiday. Commercial tenants are being protected from eviction if they are unable to pay rent but will still be liable for their rent. Landlords and tenants will be encouraged to work proactively together to find ways to restructure and, hopefully, meet both parties’ financial needs.

 

Aid for Private Rental Landlords (Scotland only)

(Update as of 11 March 2021) The Scottish Government have extended funding to support landlords whose tenants are having difficulty paying rent during the COVID-19 crisis. Landlords who are eligible can apply to the Private Rent Sector (PRS) Landlord COVID-19 Loan Scheme for support.

The scheme supports landlords who:

  • were, or had applied to become, registered before 01 February 2020
  • are not classified as businesses
  • have five or fewer properties to rent in Scotland, and
  • have lost rental income due to tenants being unable to pay rent because of COVID-19 or if a property became vacant after 01 February 2020 and you have been unable to get a new tenant due to COVID-19 restrictions.

As part of the process landlords will also need to confirm they understand the terms of the Coronavirus (Scotland) Act 2020 in relation to eviction proceedings.  You must also have discussed and reached an agreement with your tenant on managing any associated rent arrears.

A loan will cover lost rental income for a period of up to six months, backdated to the 01 August 2020.  An initial payment of half of the agreed amount will be available and landlords will be asked to verify the continued loss of income before the second instalment is paid.

However, it should be noted that before applying for a loan from the scheme, if you are a landlord who is facing difficulties with mortgage repayments on a rental property you should first seek a mortgage repayment holiday from your lender. Also, if you are eligible for other forms of support eg. the Self-Employment Income Support Scheme (SEISS) you would be expected to take these options rather than apply for this loan.

More details and the online application form can be found here on the GOV.SCOT website.

 

Business Interruption Insurance

(Update as of 1 February 2021) If you have not already done so, you should check your business insurance policies to see if business interruption cover for pandemics is in place.

In January 2021, a ruling by the Supreme Court backed small firms over business interruption insurance claims.  You can read more about these details in our previous update.

The FCA have a useful ‘policy checker’ and FAQs to help find out if your insurance policy may cover business interruption losses caused by COVID-19.

 

Business Ventilation Fund (Scotland only)

(Update as of 17 November 2021) The Scottish Government has announced a Business Ventilation Fund which will provide funding to help small and medium sized businesses improve their ventilation, and help reduce the spread of COVID-19.

Businesses will be able to claim back costs of up to £2,500 per eligible premises to undertake work such as the installation of carbon dioxide monitors and remedial improvement work to windows and vents. Support will initially target high-risk settings where people come into close contact, such as restaurants, bars and gyms but will be available across a range of sectors and services.

Where a business operates multiple premises, it can apply for a grant for each premise which is eligible. An upper limit of £50,000 in total will apply to any eligible business operating multiple premises.

All businesses who wish to apply for funding will be required to complete a self-assessment of the ventilation of their premises to provide proof of need prior to confirming eligibility or carrying out works.

The Business Ventilation Fund will open to applications during the week beginning 22 November and will be accepted until Thursday 31 March 2022 or until the fund runs out, whichever comes first.  The application process is be via the FindBusinessSupport.gov.scot website.

 

Creative Scotland Funding

(Update as of 22 December 2021) Creative Scotland has been provided with additional funding to provide support for the creative community impacted by the rapid spread of the new Omicron variant.

COVID-19 Cancellation Fund for Creative Freelancers: the fund offers a one-off award to support creative freelancers who are experiencing immediate financial hardship due to the loss of income caused by the current COVID-19 Omicrom situation. This can include the cancellation or deferral of performances, productions, exhibitions and show. You can request between £500 and £2000 to help offset your financial impact and applications will open at 2pm on Thursday 6 January 2022.  More information can be found here on the Creative Scotland website.

In addition £10.2 million will be made available to for cultural organisations and venues.  Details in relation to this funding will be published in early January.

 

Northumberland Covid Recovery Grant

(Updated as 18 January 2022) The Northumberland Covid Recovery Grant is now closed to new applications. This is to allow Northumberland County Council to process the applications they have received.  As a finite resource the grant scheme may reopen if funds remain. Updates to the scheme will be provided via the website link below.

The grants were put in place for Northumberland-based businesses, to help them implement a credible plan to recover from the financial effects of Covid-19. To be eligible your business must:

  • have a significant operational base and / or employees in Northumberland
  • have been established prior to 1 April 2021
  • employ fewer than 250 people in Northumberland
  • have a business bank account, separating personal and business finance, which has been established prior to 1 April 2021
  • be able to demonstrate solvency
  • be able to outline a credible and costed recovery plan
  • be able to fund their share of the recovery plan

Businesses not eligible for grants include home-based and mobile businesses, registered charities and organisations that provide social welfare and community facilities.

Grants support 40% of your recovery plan’s costs, with a minimum grant of £6,000 per business and a maximum grant of £20,000 per business.  Application must include details of your recovery plan.   Full details of the grant can be found here on the Northumberland County Council website.

If you would like guidance or help in preparing your business recovery plan please do get in touch with the partner who normally handles your affairs or call our Berwick-upon-Tweed office.

 

GOV.UK Business Support Finder Tool

(Update as of 21 April 2020) A ‘support finder’ tool is available on the GOV.UK website that helps businesses and self-employed individuals identify what financial support is available to them as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. The online service requires you to fill in a simple and quick questionnaire which will then determine what measures you may be eligible for.

The ‘support finder’ can be found here on the GOV.UK website.

 

HMRC and Scottish Government Helplines

(Update as of 30 March) HMRC has a set up helplines providing practical help and advice to support businesses and self-employed people concerned about not being able to pay their tax as a result of COVID-19.

The main helpline number is 0800 0159 559.
Opening hours are Monday to Friday 8am to 8pm, and Saturday 8am to 4pm.
The helpline will not be available on Bank Holidays.

To increase capacity there is now an additional dedicated phone number 0800 024 1222.
Opening hours for the helpline will be 8am to 4pm Monday to Friday only.

The Scottish business helpline specific to COVID-19 is based at the existing Scottish Enterprise call centre in Clydebank.

The business helpline number is 0300 303 0660.
Opening hours are Monday to Friday 8.30am to 5.30pm.

Guidance for employees, employers and businesses

Government guidance on healthcare advice for employers and support for businesses can be found here on the GOV.UK website.

 

We do appreciate that the range and breadth of the financial support on offer is fast moving and can be confusing. We continue to encourage you to contact us if you need support or would like a query or question answered. Our phone numbers and email addresses remain as they were. We are open for business and happy to help.

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