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Coronavirus Update – 22nd March 2020

Obp Chartered Accountants | 22nd March 2020

Here is a quick summary of the announcements made by the government to-date outlining the support available during the coronavirus outbreak.

Remember some of the measure highlighted by the chancellor are directed at English businesses and therefore if your business is in Wales we need to look at how the Welsh Government are acting on these.

Support with payments to HMRC

No VAT payments will need to be made until 30 June 2020. You will still need to complete a return and pay the VAT will not be due until 5 April 2021.

The payment on account for income tax self-assessment by 31 July 2020 will be deferred to 31 January 2021.

There is a new helpline to call if you find you have difficulty making other payments to HMRC. The number is 0800 0159 559. Be sure to contact HMRC before defaulting on any payments due but the above VAT and Income Tax payments will be implemented without the need to call them.

Coronovirus Job Retention Scheme

HMRC will pay 80% of a furloughed workers wage cost up to a maximum of £2,500 per month. Furloughed workers are those wo are asked to be absent  temporarily from work as opposed to being made redundant. Although this scheme can be backdated to 1 March we are still waiting for further detail to see how the grant will be received in practice.

Sick Pay

We are still waiting for further details on how employers will be able to recover the new statutory sick pay as a result of the new legislation put in place. The refund will cover 2 weeks’ SSP per eligible worker wo has been off sick because of COVID-19. HMRC guidelines state ‘the government will work with employers over the coming months to set up the repayment mechanism for employers as soon as possible’.

Business Rates

£10,000 cash grants will be provided to all eligible for Small Business Rates Relief with a rateable value of £12,000 or less. The rebate will be administered automatically through the Business Rates system.Retail, leisure and hospitality businesses with a rateable value of £51,000 or less will receive 100% business rates. There will also be a further grant of £25,000 for retail, leisure and hospitality businesses with a rateable value of between £12,001 and £51,000.

Loans

Loans will be made available at preferential rates to assist businesses manage the coronavirus impact on their business. The first 12 months of the interest will be interest free. The loan is available through a list of accredited lenders of the British Business Bank which covers all major banks. The scheme will be available from the week commencing 23 March and you will probably need a business plan to discuss with them.

Personal Finance assistance

Measures have put been put in place to assist families personal finances such as mortgage repayment holidays. Please contact your mortgage providers for further advice on how their particular support reflects the Chancellor’s announcements. I would also query what impact a repayment holiday would have on your credit score, especially if you are looking to move your mortgage in the near future.

Useful links

https://www.gov.uk/guidance/coronavirus-covid-19-information-for-individuals-and-businesses-in-wales#welsh-government-support-for-businesses

https://www.gov.uk/government/news/tax-helpline-to-support-businesses-affected-by-coronavirus-covid-19?&utm_source=twitter&utm_medium=social&utm_campaign=covid19

https://gov.wales/coronavirus-covid19

https://gov.wales/emergency-support-businesses-hit-coronavirus

https://gov.wales/businesses-offered-capital-repayment-holidays-help-manage-coronavirus-impact

And finally

We have been using the latest digital software for a number of years at Obp chartered accountants. This allows us to review your accounts, prepare the necessary compliance documents, business plans and provide real time advice with current information. Although we would much prefer face-to-face to contact with our clients it also means that we can do all this work remotely. Please feel free to e-mail us with your queries on and we will get back to you as soon as possible. We will also post any updates on social media.     

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