Local restrictions support grants
The Government has announced further funding to support businesses forced to close and hospitality, accommodation and leisure businesses impacted by local restrictions on socialising. We have allocated additional restrictions grant funding to also support businesses directly supplying the sectors that have also been severely impacted.
If you are forced to close by national restrictions, or your business was severely impacted by the local restrictions on socialising introduced on the 18 September 2020, you may be eligible to apply for a Local Restrictions Support Grant.
If you don't pay business rates, for example if you trade from a shared space, you can still apply for a grant if you meet the eligibility criteria.
Unlike the previous national lockdown grant scheme, businesses that occupy properties with a rateable value of more than £51,000 may apply.
£500 self-isolation payment
If you have lost income because you have been required to self isolate, you may be eligible for a payment of £500 through the Test and Trace Support payment scheme. The government has made this available to some people who are on a low income who claim certain benefits and have had to self-isolate on or after Monday 28 September 2020.
The scheme will run until 31 January 2021. If you have more than one period of self-isolation during the life of the scheme you can apply more than once. The payment is taxable but not subject to National Insurance.
Furlough Scheme Extended to March 2021
The Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme has been extended until March with employees receiving 80% of their current salary for hours not worked. To be eligible, employees must be on an employer's PAYE payroll by 23:59, 30 October 2020.
Job Support Scheme
The Job Support Scheme, which was scheduled to come in on Sunday 1 November, has been postponed until the furlough scheme ends.
It will enable employees to work just 20% of their usual hours with employers and the government paying 66.67% of the unworked hours.
Employers will be required to pay staff for the hours worked and an additional 5% contribution for the hours not worked. The government will pay the remaining 61.67% for the hours not worked, up to a maximum of £1,541.75.
Support for the self-employed
The scheme has now been extended and self-employed individuals can receive 80% of their average trading profits for November. The claims window has been brought forward from 14 December to 30 November.
The self-employment Income Support Scheme provides two grants, each for three-month periods covering November 2020 to January 2021 and February 2021 to April 2021.
Bounce Back Loan
The application deadline has been extended until 31 January 2021.
The Government's Bounce Back Loan is designed to help small and medium-sized businesses borrow between £2,000 and £50,000. The government will guarantee 100% of the loan and there won't be any fees or interest to pay for the first 12 months. Loan terms will be up to 6 years. No repayments will be due during the first 12 months.
Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan scheme
The scheme has now been extended and applications for funding can be submitted until 31 January 2021.
This scheme, delivered by the British Business Bank, will support businesses with a turnover of less than £45m per year to access bank lending and overdrafts. The government will provide lenders with a guarantee of 80% on each loan (subject to a per-lender cap on claims) to give lenders further confidence in continuing to provide finance to SMEs. The scheme will support loans of up to £5 million in value.
Businesses can access the first 12 months of that finance interest free. All the major banks will offer the scheme once it has launched so businesses should talk to their bank or finance provider (not the British Business Bank) as soon as possible.
Support for businesses paying tax
All businesses and self-employed people in financial distress, and with outstanding tax liabilities, may be eligible to receive support with their tax affairs through HMRC's Time To Pay service. These arrangements are agreed on a case-by-case basis and are tailored to individual circumstances and liabilities.
HMRC have set up a help line 0300 456 3565. They will give you advice on your tax and any benefits you are eligible to claim.
Statutory Sick Pay package of relief
The Government will bring forward legislation to allow small-and medium-sized businesses and employers (less than 250 employees) to reclaim Statutory Sick Pay paid for sickness absence due to COVID-19. The refund will cover up to 2 weeks' SSP per eligible employee who has been off work because of COVID-19. Employees who are self-isolating are now able to get SSP from the first day they are off work.
Businesses that have cover for both pandemics and government-ordered closure should be covered further to confirmation from government and the insurance industry on 17 March 2020 that advice to avoid pubs, theatres etc is sufficient to make a claim as long as all other terms and conditions are met. Businesses are encouraged to check the terms and conditions of their specific policy and contact their providers. Most businesses are however unlikely to be covered as standard business interruption insurance policies are dependent on damage to property and will exclude pandemics.
The standard rate in Universal Credit and Tax Credits has increased by £20 a week for one year from 6 April, meaning claimants will be up to £1,040 better off.
Further support and information
Other online support and advice can be found:
North East Fund - loans and other financial support for businesses: www.northeastfund.org
Transmit Start-ups -information on cashflow, funding and finance: transmitstartups.co.uk/coronavirus-support/
Federation for Small Business (FSB) - business and continuity planning: www.fsb.org.uk
Gateshead Council supplier invoices
If you are a business who works with Gateshead Council and needs to submit an invoice please email them to email@example.com in pdf format. Please only include one invoice in each pdf. Wherever possible please clearly quote a purchase order number as failure to do so could significantly delay the processing of the invoice.
Once you have emailed an invoice please do not send a hard copy.
Any queries about outstanding invoices should be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org