Advice and support available for Kings Heath businesses during the COVID-19 outbreak
Posted on Thu, 19 Mar 2020 in: News
It goes without saying that we are going through some very testing times at the moment. We’d like to assure you that we are doing everything that we can to help you through these difficult times. Please see some information below from the government that you might find useful. The Chancellor has set out a package of temporary, timely and targeted measures to support public services, people and businesses through this period of disruption caused by COVID-19. Please see below some important information about what is available to you, when you can claim and how to claim.
1. Business Coronavirus Support Finder
2. Business Support Grant Fund
3. Support for Self-Employed
4. Business Loan Scheme
5. Claiming wages through the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme
6. Business rates holiday and tax relief
1) Business Coronavirus Support Finder
Coronavirus (COVID-19) support is available to employers and the self-employed. You may be eligible for loans, tax relief and cash grants.
Use this simple business support finder tool to see what support is available for you and your business.
2) Business Support Grant Fund
- What is it
- Who can apply
- How to apply
- Support for the self-employed
The Government has announced two grant funding schemes to help support small businesses, and businesses in the retail, hospitality and leisure sectors.
Birmingham City Council have received 11,000 grant applications (out of an expected 19,000) and have so far paid over 4000 applicants. We have spoken to the Council and they have confirmed that their systems have improved and they expect to clear the backlog by the second week in May
The Small Business Grant Fund (SBGF) is available to all businesses in England that are in receipt of either Small Business Rates Relief (SBRR) or Rural Rates Relief (RRR); these businesses will be eligible for a payment of £10,000.
The Retail Hospitality and Leisure Grant (RHLG) is available to all businesses in England that have a rateable value of less than £51,000. Eligible businesses in these sectors with a property that has a rateable value of up to and including £15,000 will receive a grant of £10,000. Eligible businesses in these sectors with a property that has a rateable value of over £15,000 and less than £51,000 will receive a grant of £25,000.
Please use the Business Coronavirus Support Finder Tool to find out what support your business is entitled to. Business owners must apply to Birmingham City Council directly to receive the grants. Birmingham City Council have received 11,000 grant applications (out of an expected 19,000) and have so far paid over 4000 applicants. We have spoken to the Council and they have confirmed that their systems have improved and they expect to clear the backlog before the first week in May.
If you have not applied to BCC for a business support grant yet, please do so here: https://www.birmingham.gov.uk/xfp/form/714
You will need:
- Business rates account number
- Name of person that appears on the business rates bill
- VAT number, if applicable
- Companies House number, if applicable
- Rateable value of your property
If you can not find your business rates account number, please e-mail email@example.com and request it from them.
[Note: Does your business not qualify for a grant because your rateable value is above £50k? Join the ‘Raise the Bar’ campaign - a petition urging the government to raise the £25,000 grant rateable value threshold from £51k to £150k to ensure that these crucial businesses survive through COVID-19.)
If you're self-employed or a member of a partnership in the UK and have lost income due to coronavirus (COVID-19) you are entitled to a support grant from the government.
If you are entitled to the grant, HMRC will aim to contact you in May 2020. We are monitoring the situation daily, and should an application mechanism be released online we will let you know how to claim and what information you will need to process your application.
In the meantime, we would recommend that you:-
- Check you are entitled to this grant using the # tool
- Make a note of your Unique Tax Payer Reference
- Ensure you have copies of your tax return for 2016 to 2017, 2017 to 2018 and 2018 to 2019 (if available)
For more information, please visit:
4) Business Loan Schemes
- What loan schemes are available
- Who can apply
- How to apply
There are currently two loan schemes available for businesses that have been adversely affected by the Coronavirus pandemic:
1. Coronavirus Bounce Back Loan
If your small to medium-sized business (SME) is affected by coronavirus, you may be able to borrow between £2,000 and £50,000 through a Bounce Back Loan scheme.
The government will guarantee 100% of the loan and for the first 12 months you will not have to pay any fees or interest, or make repayments.
You may be eligible for this scheme if your business:
- is based in the UK
- has been negatively affected by coronavirus
- was not an ‘undertaking in difficulty’ on 31 December 2019
This includes self-employed people.
This scheme was announced on 27 April 2020 and will be available from 4 May 2020; more information will be available over the next few days.
1. Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme
If you are a small to medium-sized business (SME) you may be able to apply for a temporary loan, overdraft, invoice finance and asset finance of up to £5 million, for up to 6 years.
You may also be eligible for Business Interruption Payment to cover the first 12 months of interest payments and any lender fees. The government will give lenders 80% guarantee on each loan (subject to pre-lender cap on claims).
Self-employed people are also eligible for Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme.
You may be eligible for this scheme if you meet all of the following criteria:
- your business is UK-based, with a turnover of no more than £45 million per year
- you have a borrowing proposal which would be considered viable by the lender, if not for the current pandemic
- you can self-certify that coronavirus (COVID-19) has adversely impacted your business
5) Claiming wages through the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme
You can claim for 80% of your employee’s wages plus any employer National Insurance and pension contributions if you have put them on furlough because of coronavirus (COVID-19). You will need to apply directly to the Government to make a claim.
To make a claim for furloughed employees wages, click here:
You will need:
- to be registered for PAYE online
- your UK bank account number and sort code
- your employer PAYE scheme reference number
- the number of employees being furloughed
- each employee’s National Insurance number
- each employee’s payroll or employee number (optional)
- the start date and end date of the claim
- the full amount you’re claiming for including employer National Insurance contributions and employer minimum pension contributions
- your phone number
- contact name
You also need to provide either:
- your name (or the employer’s name if you’re an agent)
- your Corporation Tax unique taxpayer reference
- your Self Assessment unique taxpayer reference
- your company registration number
Alternatively, your Accountant can make the claim with HMRC on your behalf.
6) Business rates holiday and tax relief
Business rates holiday for retail, hospitality and leisure
Businesses in the retail, hospitality and leisure sectors in England will not have to pay business rates for the 2020 to 2021 tax year.
You do not need to do anything. If you are eligible, Birmingham City Council will apply the discount automatically.
You’re eligible if your property is a:
- restaurant, café, bar or pub
- cinema or live music venue
- assembly or leisure property - for example, a sports club, a gym or a spa
- hospitality property - for example, a hotel, a guest house or self-catering accommodation
1. Deferring VAT
If you’re a UK VAT registered business and have a VAT payment due between 20 March 2020 and 30 June 2020, you have the option to defer payment until 31 March 2021.
2. Support for businesses paying tax: Time To Pay Service
If you cannot pay your tax bill on time because of coronavirus, you may be able to delay it without penalty using HMRC’s Time to Pay service.
You may be eligible if you are a UK business that:
- pays tax to the UK government
- has outstanding tax liabilities