Furlough ends this week. What Covid support is there now for York businesses?

Coney Street in York. Photograph: YorkMix
29 Oct 2020 @ 5.53 pm
| Business

Ask the expert

Stephen Smith is the YorkMix finance and tax expert. He runs TaxAssist York, and is here to help you with all your money concerns

Welcome to my first Ask The Expert column. I’ll be running a monthly article giving advice on everything from sourcing grants, benefits and finance, maximising your profits, starting a business and reducing your tax bills.

And I’m here to answer your financial questions – you can see my first answers below!

Today, I’ll be looking at the new financial support options open to York businesses, as the furlough scheme ends on Saturday (31 October). It’s something a lot of my clients have been asking me about in recent days.

With York now in Tier 2, it was welcome news that the Government has introduced further support for the city’s businesses. So what help can they get?

Local Restrictions Support Grant (Tier 2)

This new scheme is for businesses in York which do not legally have to close but are severely impacted by the restrictions of Tier 2.

City of York Council have been given further funding to allocate to hospitality, hotel, bed and breakfast and leisure businesses based on their rateable value. Applications once open can be made here.

They are the equivalent to 70% of grants available to legally closed businesses, which are under the tighter Tier 3 restrictions.

Self Employment Income Support Scheme (SEISS)

The Government have announced they are increasing payments for the third grant.

It is aimed at self employed workers who have seen their income hit by the restrictions, covers November 2020 to January 2021, and has increased from 20% to 40% of average monthly trading profits.

A further grant payment is being reviewed to cover February to April next year.

The Job Support Scheme

The Job Retention Scheme – better known as furlough – is ending on Saturday (31 October) where the Government – for October – was supporting 60% of normal wages capped at £1,875 with a 20% top up from the employer.

From 1st November, the Job Support Scheme will begin. Here employees must work a minimum of 20% of their hours and the employer will pay them as normal for hours worked.

Under the scheme, employers will pay 5% of unworked hours up to £125 per month along with national insurance and pension contributions – with employees receiving at least 73% of their normal wage if they are earning £3,125 per month or less.

If you are looking for advice or help with applying for any of these schemes, please contact our office for further details.

Contact Stephen

TaxAssist Accountants York
63-65 Heworth Road, Heworth, York, YO31 0AA
01904 414411

Your questions to Stephen

We’ve had a number questions sent in and Stephen has covered a couple of the key ones below.

Do you have a question for Stephen? Drop it in the comments below, or email it to [email protected].

I have a rental property that I am looking to sell but I heard that I now need to pay Capital Gains Tax earlier rather than on my tax return. What are the new rules and am I affected?

From 6th April 2020, the rules have changed on Capital Gains tax when you sell a second property that’s not your main home. Instead of just reporting it on your self assessment, you now need to file a return and pay within 30 days of completion.

There has also been a change in the rules in regards to lettings and private residence relief which may also affect your calculation – for further details or help in working out your tax owed, please contact my office for a free consultation.

Myself and my girlfriend are both self employed and are unable to work due to self isolation via track and trace but we’ve been told we can’t apply for the self isolation fund of £500. On top of that we both unsuccessfully applied for the self employment grant and we can’t understand why!

There are a number of criteria that you have to meet to access the grant.

The track and trace support payment is available for both employed and self employed who have been told to self isolate by NHS Test & Trace, unable to work from home and claim one of the benefits listed here.

If you don’t qualify, there are discretionary funds available, if you aren’t receiving any of the benefits listed but are facing financial hardship. Both these payments are administered by City of York Council so you would need to contact them to apply.

In regards to the SEISS grant, the eligibility from Government has always been that you must have

  • filed a 2018/19 tax return by 23 April 2020
  • have profits of less than £50,000
  • will be continuing to trade
  • and have been negatively affected by Covid-19.

If you feel that you were incorrectly declared ineligible, appeals can be made to HMRC.

Stephen Smith FCCA is Managing Director of TaxAssist Accountants York