The latest on government financial support for self-employed workers

Melanie Richardson


Accurate as of 10th April 2020

The government have put in place several measures to support self-employed workers that have been affected by the Coronavirus. This article will help you understand if you are eligible and how you can gain access to the scheme.



Quick links:


Self-employment income support scheme:


Deferral of Self-Assessment payment:



Self-employment Income Support Scheme (SEISS)



What is it?


SEISS will support self-employed individuals or partnerships whose income has been negatively impacted by COVID-19. It is a grant of 80% of profits worth up to £2,500 per month.


How is it calculated?


HMRC uses your last three years’ average profits from your tax returns (2016-17, 2017-18 & 2018-19) to calculate the size of the grant. To work out the average HMRC will add together the total trading profit for the 3 tax years (where applicable) then divide by 3 (where applicable) and use this to calculate a monthly amount.



Am I eligible?


The scheme is available to people where the majority of their income comes from self-employment and who have profits of less than £50,000.


You must meet all of the below criteria:


  • Be self-employed or a member of a partnership
  • Have lost trading profits due to COVID-19
  • Filed a tax return for 2018-19
  • Have traded in 2019-20, be currently trading at time of application and intend to continue trading in the tax year 2020-21
  • Have trading profits of less than £50,000 and more than half your total income come from self-employment


How long does the scheme last?


It is open for an initial three months with people being able to make their first claim by the beginning of June.


How do I access it?


HMRC will use their date to get in touch with you and invite applications when the scheme is live; they will then pay the grant directly into your bank account if successful.


For further information HMRC are publishing updated guidance here:



Deferral of self-assessment payment


If you’re due to make a self-assessment payment on account by the 31st of July 2020 then you may defer the payment until January 2021. The deferral is optional and if you are able to make the payment you should do so.


This is an automatic offer and you do not need to apply for this. There will be no penalties or interest for late payment until the 31st of January 2021.



If you are self-employed and have further questions about help that is available to you at this time please get in touch with your Swindells’ partner who will be able to advise you further.

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