Update on Government Support

20th March 2020

More details continue to come through about the Government's support for individuals and businesses during this challenging period.

Another announcement is coming from The Chancellor this afternoon and we will update you with any further developments next week.

Meanwhile, you can find the announcements to date here: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/guidance-to-employers-and-businesses-about-covid-19/covid-19-support-for-businesses

Clear Vision clients will be hearing from our team over the next few days with our continued offer of support. 

Interest Rate

UK base rate was cut to 0.1% yesterday.  The lowest rate in the Bank of England’s history.

Payment of Tax - Time to Pay

We have received more evidence that HMRC are being accommodating—no penalties, no interest, no questions, three months grace.  You can ring 0800 0159 559 to discuss your payment requirements. Please note the following:

  • If you must stop your direct debit with HMRC if your tax, particularly VAT is paid in this way, you can’t ask for time to pay if the tax has already been paid via your direct debit
  • Your tax return needs to have been submitted before you ask for time to pay

Be prepared to wait for your call to be answered, as you can imagine the helpline is extremely busy.

Renters

Mortgage payers have been offered a 3 month payment holiday (details to be confirmed).  Nothing yet is reported for people who rent.  We would expect this to be addressed in the Chancellor's statement tonight. 

Small Business Grant of £10,000

This is non repayable free money but note it only applies to people with premises.  It is intended to help with overheads.  People with overheads have a double effect—without sales they have no income and have to pay money out.  If you don’t have premises you will have to rely on the loans that are available.  

Cashflow Projections

If you are looking for a loan you will need to know how much to ask for.  We are helping our clients work this out.  This short-term planning (3-4 months) will provide the financial clarity you need to reassure you at this time. 

Other Finance

The government backed interest-free no personal guarantee loans are the cheapest and easiest form of finance but other places to find money might be:

•    If you are over 55 you have access to your pension

•    Research and Development tax credits are available if you have done qualifying work

•    The re-calculation of your July payments on account if you are expecting your business income to reduce

The government has said very clearly that they will do whatever it takes to save small businesses.  The help has been timely and very significant; it feels like they will provide the cash to see us through this.

We await this afternoon's update with interest and will, of course, bring you further updates next week.

Keep safe and well

The Clear Vision Team